Sex, drugs, pizza and soda; all had an important part to play in the first Speak and Eat Conversation Series of the semester.
The Speak and Eat Conversation Series is a monthly meeting in which students can come to be educated on topics circulating around campus, and is run by the Dr. Harley Flack student mentoring program. The topic changes contingent upon what has been happening around campus recently and gives students advice and tips on what to do if a conflicting situation comes up, and of course, there is food involved.
The club is open to everyone, although there are three levels of involvement. Students can be professional mentors, peer mentors, and mentees. Mentors can get paired up with mentees and educate others through games, trivia, slideshows and videos.
Mentor Yesica Molina took lead of the meeting as she presented slides and even a game of Jeopardy that got everyone involved.
“It’s the second week of school so we try to give the sex drugs and alcohol because its first-year students and they don’t know what to do. They just try to go out and drink and they don’t know the consequences of that and they don’t understand what it is to be safe on a college campus,” Molina said.
Temple Jordan, assistant director for mentoring and inclusion programs through SJICR and advisor of the Flack program agreed that the conversation pertains to the time. She focuses more on making sure students have resources to turn to. This year the program is celebrating its 25 anniversary at Rowan University.
“If you feel like you’re isolated and you don’t have a network on campus that is a part of what the mentoring program wants to do is to create a space where you feel welcome and you feel like you’re supported, and you can come and be who you are,” Jordan said.
The group interacted, conversed, and laughed as the program was under way. Students talked to each other and shared experiences, stories, and knowledge of the topic presented.
Jordan and Molina both stressed the importance of community. They wanted to make sure that each student has a place to come and feel welcome at all times.
“It is a come one come all, type thing,” Jordan said. “We try to feed you and give you other types of things. If you have any questions, if you need mentorship, if you need help, assistance or guidance, if you feel like college is a place where you feel isolated and you need a community that’s what we’re trying to create.”
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