Flames of the Torch

This week, the Torch reported on Trojan’s annual sexual health report card. In the survey, sponsored by Trojan and conducted by Sperling’s BestPlaces, St. John’s was ranked number 139 out of 140 schools surveyed.

Typically, we don’t hear much about this report, aside from some talk on social media – but this week, Student Government Inc. (SGI) brought it up at one of their floor meetings, and discussed the University’s ranking.

Being ranked second to worst on a list regarding the sexual health of colleges is no laughing matter.

Frank Obermeyer, SGI’s secretary, made this point at the most recent floor meeting. He said that SGI has met with the director of Violence Prevention to discuss sex education and sexual health. He said that they hope to make some changes by learning about what other schools are doing.

Although St. John’s is a Catholic school and pre-marital sex is against the religion, it is a well-known fact that students are having sex. Colleges across the nation offer students access to free condoms, as well as testing for STD’s. At SJU, these are currently not options.

Despite the University’s religious affiliation, a movement to provide students with these things is forming. We at the Torch support these efforts.

Sexual health education is a necessity for all, and it is an unfortunate reality that its importance is undervalued in college campuses across the nation; students deserve an environment that fosters healthy attitudes toward sex.

Proper sexual health and wellness education is key for all people; especially students. It’s essential to a healthy lifestyle overall.

We support more expansive sex education on campus. We also support providing students with support, such as STD testing, and access to contraception.

The Torch commends SGI, especially Obermeyer, for starting to shed light on this topic. The conversation that has begun is a valuable one, and we applaud them for taking initiative and being open on such an important topic.

College is designed to be a time when students find and use their voices. We believe that it is important for the student body to act reasonably, responsibly, and passionately in pursuit of change when change is needed.

We hope to see their efforts continue, and look forward to seeing progression on this matter at St. John’s.