Rubber Lovers teaches proper condom use


File photo

Bridget Owens, a senior health studies major and student worker with the Health Education Resource Center, demonstrates the use of a dental dam during a RubberLovers session in the Charleston/Mattoon Room in the Martin Luther King Jr. University Union on February 20, 2014. At the session, students took a pre-test to determine how much knowledge they already had about sexual matters. The session ended with a post-test designed to measure how much the students had learned during the session.

Luis Martinez, Entertainment Editor

Wednesday marks this semester’s first meeting for Rubber Lovers, a program designed to teach Eastern students the steps to proper condom protection to help maintain a healthy Eastern campus.

The program is a part of the Health Education Resource Center, and it is designed to be an interactive, 18 step program.

Melany Zwilling, a graduate assistant and the sexual health promotion coordinator from the HERC, helps run the Rubber Lovers program.

“At the beginning of the semester usually we have 50 to 100 (students) attend, towards the end, we can have varied numbers,” Zwilling said. “Students actually go through all 18 steps of putting a condom on a wooden penis after I have shown them the steps.”

Zwilling also said there will be many activities for students to go through as they try to complete all 18 steps of the program.

“By attending just one presentation during the school year, students can become a certified Rubber Lover,” Zwilling said. “The presentation also discusses how to protect against the transmissions of Sexually Transmitted Infections, how to prevent unplanned pregnancies, and the importance of getting tested.”

Zwilling also said new students who attend the program and complete the steps would be a certified Rubber Lover, including receiving a certification card.

“Once a certified Rubber Lovers member, students will receive a certification card that allows them discounted safer sex supplies at the EIU pharmacy over those who are not Rubber Lovers,” Zwilling said, “New students should attend this presentation to learn facts and information regarding safer sex practices to keep EIU a healthy campus.”

Returning students who received their certification in previous years must renew their membership once an academic year to received the discounted rates.

The Rubber Lovers will showcase their program starting August 26th at 5:30 p.m. in Coleman Hall in room 1255, and will continue at Coleman Hall until September 15th, when it will be in the Charleston-Mattoon room in the Martin Luther King Jr. University Union.

The rest of the meetings for the year will continue in the MLK Union, but will switch from room to room depending on the date.

The final Rubber Lovers meeting of the Fall semester will take place on November 10th in the Charleston-Mattoon room in the MLK Union at 7 p.m.


Luis Martinez can be reached at [email protected] or 581-2812