“Breaking Free: Only I Can Define Me,” is the theme that will launch CSUN’s 13th annual Eating Disorder Awareness Week, taking place February 25-28.
The series of events are hosted by the Joint Advocates on Disordered Eating, a program for peer educators whose mission is to inform and prevent eating disorders while encouraging a positive body image among students on campus.
Through a variety of lectures and interactive activities that will both educate and entertain the ultimate message is, “not to let ourselves be limited by society or feel the need to look a certain way and break free from stereotypes,” said peer educator Komal Tejwani.
“Mirror Mirror: Body Image and Media,” a lecture by Melanie Klien, a faculty member from the sociology department, will start the week off in the Thousand Oaks Room located in the University Student Union.
“She is very engaging and her lectures are well received and thought provoking,” said Dorna Basiratmand, a graduate assistant for JADE.
Through the support of the University Student Union and Associated Students Union the campus will welcome Dr. Jean Kilbourne on Tuesday to present, “Slim Hopes/Still Killing Us Softly: Advertising, Gender an Obsession with Thinness,” in the Northridge Center.
“We could not have Jean Kilbourne on campus without the help of the University Student Union and Associated Students Union,” said Basiratmand. “It was definitely a collaborative effort between us.”
Kilbourne is a widely recognized lecturer on college campuses throughout the United States.
“We are expecting about 600 or more people, 150 of which will be from the community. We have gotten calls from as far as San Diego,” said JADE director Ellen Mayer. The event is expected to reach capacity.
While the lecture is scheduled to begin at 1:45 p.m. there is an added benefit for those who arrive early; the first 30 students will receive a free copy of Kilbourne’s book “Can’t Buy My Love: How Advertising Changes the Way We Think and Feel,” said Tejwani.
Kilbourne will be signing copies of her book after the lecture which will be available for purchase at the event.
After months of planning, JADE’s will host one of their biggest events on Thursday, a large outdoor fair called, “Every Body is Beautiful,” which will take place on the Matador Walkway from 10a.m. to 2p.m.
“We anticipate reaching a lot of students with our outdoor event. It is a way of combining humor, fun, and information,” said Mayer. “I think that when people are relaxed and having a good time they are able to take it all in.”.
A stigma seems to still remain when it comes to eating disorders, in particular for men.
“There will be a booth especially for men. It will help them take a look at men’s issues surrounding body image,” said Mayer.
“We anticipate reaching a lot of students with out outdoor event. It is a way of combing humor, fun and information in a fair like atmosphere while they relax and take it all in,” said Mayer. “I think that when people are relaxed and having a good time they are able to process it.”