Komen on the Go: Breast Cancer Event Expands Awareness for Students
A breast cancer awareness event by the Susan G. Komen for the Cure organization was held at California State University, Dominguez Hills on Nov. 3. The Komen on the Go program is a nationwide outreach effort targeted at college students and communities to provide education and involvement opportunities in the fight against the disease. A mobile learning station was on the Carson campus, with interactive video exhibits and information available to students and the local community.
Junior Esbeyde Garcia was on her way to her job at the Loker Student Union’s Game Room when she was invited to view Komen on the Go’s informational video. She says that the experience was an eye opener in that it made her aware that breast cancer is not just an older woman’s disease.
“You can be as young as 20,” she says. “I’m 20 and I could, if I’m not careful, acquire this disease also.”
Garcia registered for more information and volunteer opportunities on the Komen Website, in order to help spread the word about breast cancer.
“My aunt is a breast cancer survivor,” she says, “so I wanted to get more involved because that was a promise I made to her.”
Kim Kirchhoff, a Komen staff member, says that student response to Komen on the Go, which makes stops at universities and community sites throughout the country, has been enthusiastic. She added that male students have shown interest.
“Men can get breast cancer as well, so we definitely encourage men to come through,” she says. “They’re also the one who could be finding a lump in a [partner’s] breast, so it’s important for them to know what they’re looking for. A lot of times, they might know a family member who’s affected by breast cancer and they just want to learn more.”
Garcia, a psychology major, is hoping to go to graduate school at Loyola Marymount and looks forward to specializing in teen body image and self-esteem. She said that she would encourage a young cancer survivor whose appearance might be changed by a mastectomy by helping them to “see the positive.”
“I would tell them, ‘Thank God that you’re still alive,’” she said.
For more information about Susan G. Komen for the Cure and Komen on the Go, click here.
- Joanie Harmon
Photo above: Komen on the Go staff members Kim Kirchhoff (at left) and Erica Turner help psychology major Esbeyde Garcia (seated) learn about breast cancer and getting involved in the cause.
Photo by Joanie Harmon