UHS hosts annual Healthyhorns Fest

Estefania Espinosa

Through games and freebies, University Health Services informed students about the resources it provides at their annual Healthyhorns Fest at Gregory Plaza on Wednesday.

Senior program coordinator Sherry Bell said the event, which has changed names several times since its inception, has been held for 34 years. Bell said despite the light rain, UHS expected a turnout of more than 1,000 students, a similar turnout rate to previous years, but he said the group won’t have attendance totals for a few days.

Activities included sexuality trivia spin-the-wheel, blood pressure checks and a stress management booth. Lines of students gathered at the free chair massages and the photo booth where they were encouraged to share their picture on social media using the hashtag “#HHFest.” UHS booths were staffed by peer educators, UHS clinic volunteers, the Student Health Advisory Committee and UHS staff who gave away apples, T-shirts, condoms, hand sanitizer and calendars.

Plan II senior Alex Ryden, an officer liaison for SHAC, said the organization works closely with UHS and often volunteers at their events. SHAC also conducts surveys and collects feedback from students about UHS services to improve the resources available to students.

Chemistry and history senior John Broussard, who has attended Healthyhorns Fest since his first year at UT, said he did not know UHS offered sports medicine and physical therapy programs.

“They always seem to have something new,” Broussard said.

Broussard said his favorite booth was “Is Your Backpack Causing You Pain?,” where he discovered he was carrying 10 percent of his body weight and was in danger of hurting his back.

English sophomore Seo Kong, who had never attended Healthyhorns Fest before, said UHS offers diverse programs and helpful information.

“Anybody who comes here can find something that they’re interested in,” Kong said.

Citing the National College Health Assessment, Bell said the main physical health conditions that negatively impact academic performance in college students are colds, sore throats and the flu.

Bell advised students to take advantage of the upcoming UHS 2015 Flu Shot Campaign, which begins Sept. 29. Bell said the standard price will be $10 for any student without insurance but most insurances will cover the cost.

Bell said she hopes students will continue to use UHS services after this event.

“The goal of UHS is to keep students performing at their best academic level,” Bell said.