Where Did All the Condoms Go?

Wednesdays at FAU used to be free condom days for students. Recently, the Today & Beyond Wellness Center free condoms have disappeared from the Breezeway and nobody seems to know why.

“Do you mean the gym?” asks Ian Davis, a junior at FAU who has no idea where the Today & Beyond Wellness Center is located. Davis says, “I’ve been here for three years now, and I didn’t even know it existed.”

Other students are also puzzled by the Today & Beyond Wellness Center’s location including junior Ariel Brenner, “I know they have bed races, but what else do they do?”

On the second floor of the Breezeway, there’s a dimly lit and deserted hallway with seven rooms full of untapped resources. This Student Services hallway is home to some of the most useful facilities for students including a pharmacy, multicultural office, Greek Life office and counseling, all with the intent to help the student body in both healthful and practical ways. The only problem seems to be that no one knows they exist.

So what exactly is this Today & Beyond Wellness Center and why is it so important? Junior Chloe Ramsey says, “It’s the place where I used to get the free rubber duckies and condoms, but now they stopped sitting in the Breezeway on Wednesdays!”

However, the Today & Beyond Wellness Center is full of more than just rubber ducks and condoms. In fact, if you do happen to visit the center in SS 222 above the cafeteria, you will also find free agendas, pens, candy and HIV testing dates. The Today & Beyond Wellness Center is not just a freebie room though, it offers much more including counseling, the Peer Education Team and a place to sign up for the Learning Initiative for Team Building.

Rosemary Dunbar, the Today & Beyond Wellness Center director, says that “we are a resource for students who are having any kind of issues, problems or concerns. We get them help on campus or from outside resources.”

The mission statement for the Today & Beyond Wellness Center as printed on the flyers in the office is “to provide education, support and resources for FAU students and staff in all areas of wellness…” A decrepit bulletin board on the first floor of the Breezeway advertises the Peer Education Team, a program created in part by the Wellness Center that consists of 35 active members who carry out that mission statement. These students volunteer their time to assist in the facilitation of workshops, peer theater presentations and classroom programs.

The programs include the Wellness Expo, triathlon, Sexually Responsible Bed Race, breast and testicular cancer awareness program and more. Classroom events include “Under the Influence,” “Disordered Eating: An American Pastime” and other educational lectures.

That 50-foot tower just north of the gymnasium is also used by the viable Wellness Center with a program called the Learning Initiative for Team Building (L.I.F.T). The L.I.F.T program uses the ropes course to provide a venue for active learning which stimulates creative problem solving techniques.

The Today & Beyond Wellness Center also aims activities towards students who live on campus. Dunbar says, “Sometimes we do informational programs and fun-based games all with an education proponent for the dorms.”

As far as Condom Wednesdays are concerned, Dunbar says that the Wellness Center “sets up tables in the Breezeway all the time; most things we do are on Wednesdays and each month we have a couple of big events.” She says that the Today & Beyond Wellness Center only stretches to the Boca campus but that Davie and other campuses have their own wellness centers. All centers hand out free condoms, but the rubber ducks are native to Boca.

That hall of opportunity just above the Breezeway cafeteria holds many options for students, and as Dunbar says, “The Today & Beyond Wellness Center is a department that is strictly meant to help the students with any concerns or health issues, and we work to find proper resources or support to help the student.”

If you are interested in the Peer Education Team, please call (561) 297-3615. If you are interested in the Learning Initiative for Team Building, call (561) 297-0153.