Community Health Organization on Campus

BY Christine Renner
and Kristy Mokar
SC Staff Writers

Approximately once a month Michelle Rossi, a representative from the Schuylkill County Wellness Center joins members from ESU’s Community Health Organization (CHO) to facilitate a sexual education program called Voices/Voces. The Voices program has inspired students at ESU to broaden their knowledge on STDs and HIV/AIDS.  A short video, along with commercials, are shown to help students feel more comfortable in situations and discussions that involve condom use and testing for infections.

Michelle then leads a discussion covering a range of topics regarding safe sexual practices.  Students are encouraged to speak freely and ask questions.

CHO partnered with Schuylkill County Wellness Center to offer the program on campus in the Spring semester of 2012.

The program has been held in various dormitories on campus and about 10 students participate in the presentation each month.  Students are provided with free condoms and correct information including how and why to use them.

A recent participant was asked about the prevention program and stated, “I now know what to do if I were put into this scenario. The free condoms were also a bonus because it’s nerve racking to buy them in front of strangers.”

The Voices/Voces programs are typically held on Wednesday evenings at 7pm.  Details are posted in the ESU Bulletin.  Christine Renner and Kristy Mokar, members of CHO, have coordinated the program scheduling on behalf of CHO and ESU.

The last program for this semester is scheduled for Wednesday, November 28, 2012 at 7pm in Lenape Lounge.

ESU’s Community Health Organization (CHO) was established in 2005 as a service learning initiative for undergraduate and graduate students in the Department of Health Studies.

Recognized and registered within the ESU Student Activity Association, this club is open to any student on campus interested in public health.

The primary mission of CHO is to provide students opportunities to engage in public health initiatives on and off campus.

For on campus initiatives, CHO members have a history of writing grant proposals to improve campus health.

Students are encouraged to work with local community health organizations to build public health infrastructure.  Over the years, many students have authored/co-authored professional conference papers with the efforts that have been brought forth by CHO.

Examples of some of CHO’s previous funded programs include improving recycling, water conservation, educating about safer sex, and engaging in “This is Public Health” sticker campaigns.

Current CHO projects include the partnership with Schuylkill County Wellness Center to provide the Voices/Voces program on campus and a partnership with the Red Cross Monroe County chapter to assist with blood drives on campus.

Future projects include the development of a community food garden, collaboration with ESU’s Alcohol, Drug and Tobacco commission and the use of social media as a venue to educate ESU students on public health related issues.

CHO meets the first Tuesday and the last Tuesday of every month at 3pm in the conference room in Denike.

Please drop by a meeting or contact Jamie Thomas at if you would like more information about CHO or its projects.

Email Christine and Kristy,
repectively at:; and