Gear Up Step Up
Who We Are The University Health Center’s (UHC) Peer Educators and Interns provide fun and interactive presentations and programs for the University of Maryland community on wellness as it pertains to issues of: sexual and relationship violence, drugs and alcohol, sexual health, mental health, and other topics related to healthy behaviors and lifestyles for college students.
The University of Maryland has charged the UHC’s Peer Educators and Interns to train every incoming student in a bystander intervention program called Step Up! Given this monumental task which will almost double our current presentations and programs, the UHC must re-evaluate its infrastructure and current model for training and supporting the peer educators. We are seeking support and funding to elevate and expand our peer program as we deliver this very important message across campus. Our goal is to create the safe and inclusive campus that all Terps deserve and we know that improved support materials and a strong brand could allow us to do our best work!
How We Transform UMD Fostering an environment rich across the spectrum of wellness provides a more comprehensive approach to student retention and success. Stress related anxiety and depression remain the most common mental health diagnoses among college students; this impedes retention rates as well as the long-term success of our students. Additionally, sexual violence, relationship violence, binge-drinking, and risky sexual behaviors all occur at statistically higher rates for college-aged populations, often concurrently. Step UP, our bystander intervention presentation, issues a response to this by activating the masses to identify red flags and normalize students’ communication with their peers about potentially high risk situations. Step UP relies on creating incremental and manageable change, where students are encouraged to replace instances of violence or apathy with moments of action, safety, and support. This workshop sets the foundation for educational opportunities in all areas of wellness and is a promising tool to foster new positive social norms on our campus.
How You Can Help Due to funding restraints, the UHC has limited resources to provide our team with an appropriate uniform or one that is on par with other student organizations providing such visible services. Therefore, all donations will be used to purchase program materials and apparel for our Peer Educators to equip them with the professional presence that is critical when facilitating these difficult and important conversations. Similar to other groups across campus who are known for their look and can be identified by others across campus as student leaders, creating a uniform including polos, backpacks, and name-tags for our Peer Educators is essential for us to be recognized as credible and established student leaders and will allow the campus to know who we are if they ever need Step Up assistance. We believe that the visual representation of the peers should reflect the importance of their role on campus; a professional uniform will help enhance our legitimacy and distinguish us as student leaders as we provide face-to-face training with all incoming students. Any additional funds will be used to enhance future activities for our peer education efforts on campus.
Gratitude Your support will enhance our peer educators' abilities to provide essential and impactful prevention education on our campus. Thanks to you, our peer educators and the Step Up! message will be more recognizable, accessible, and professional which will help our campus community easily identify and understand ways in which we can all be active bystanders and where to go for support. Please like us on facebook and follow us on twitter to stay up to date about our wellness and prevention efforts and to see how your donation is supporting our peer education programming!
Gifts in support of the University of Maryland are accepted and managed by the University of Maryland College Park Foundation, Inc., an affiliated 501(c)(3) organization authorized by the Board of Regents. Contributions to the University of Maryland are tax deductible as allowed by law. Please see your tax advisor for details.