Scholarship of Discovery; Scholarship of Community Application
This off-campus health education internship was conducted at the Christian Activity Center (CAC) in East St. Louis, IL. East St. Louis is a community filled with poverty, violence, poor health, and failing schools. The need for life skills and wellness education is significant. The goal of the internship was to provide practical health-related information to enlighten young women about their own bodies and high-risk behaviors in hopes that they could apply the information and make adjustments or choices to improve their own lives. To meet this objective a proven successful curriculum, Smart Girls Life Skills Training© (Smart Girls), was taught in conjunction with an educator from Southern Illinois Healthcare Foundation (SIHF). There were seven class sessions held that covered different topic matter: enhancing self esteem, goal setting, assertiveness training, dating relationships, sexual responsibility, sexually transmitted infections, and a review celebration day. Approximately 15 adolescent females volunteered to take the class. A research component was incorporated to evaluate the effectiveness of the education. The participants took pre and post-tests before and after each session, a comprehensive post-test following the whole course, and a repeat comprehensive posttest two and a half months later. A control group of five girls also took the same repeat comprehensive post-test. The results revealed an increase in knowledge from the pre-test scores to the post-test. Additionally, significant results between the control group (M=70.2) and the experimental group (M=90.2) were determined. The results showed that the purpose was met but further research could be conducted.
Busler, Rebecca J., "Effectiveness of Wellness and Life Skills Education for Adolescent Females of Inner-City East St. Louis" (2014). Honors Program Projects. 52.