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Sex in the Dark Highlights Events Planned by Student Health Services

Wed, 02/09/2011 - 10:29am | By: Van Arnold

The phrase “condom fashion show” should easily suffice in grabbing people's attention.

Student Health Services at The University of Southern Mississippi hopes the unconventional “contest” will do much more than that by helping raise awareness about the dangers of unprotected sex.

The fashion show is part of a special Sex in the Dark event sponsored by Student Health Services and the Southern Miss Activities Council from 7-9 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 10 in the R.C. Cook Union Building, Room B. The program will also include a panel discussion by campus “sexperts” who will answer questions submitted anonymously about sex and sexual relationships.

“The fashion show is just a fun activity that's edgy enough to get people talking – which is what we want,” said Jodi Ryder, health education and promotion coordinator at Southern Miss. “Sex can be an uncomfortable topic and we want to create a fun, relaxed atmosphere to bring awareness to the risks and responsibilities that come with it.”

Ryder notes that the fashion show will consist of Southern Miss students modeling outfits they constructed from condoms supplied by Student Health Services. “Don't worry, there are rules to make sure all entries are decent,” said Ryder. A cash prize will be awarded to the winner.

February represents a busy month for Student Health Services which also plans activities related to National Eating Disorders Week (Feb. 20-26) as well as the department's annual health fair, set for 10 a.m.-2 p.m. on Feb. 23 in the Union lobby.

When asked if she believes students are doing enough to protect themselves health-wise, Ryder said, “I would like to say yes but I don't think that's the case. That's why we have these awareness events. When I'm out talking with students I realize how unaware they are of risks and dangers that come with certain behaviors. We offer a lot of education as well as clinical services at a price you can't beat.”

For more information about Student Health Services call 601.266.5266 or visit