By Kelly Corbett
On Monday, Sept. 16, Green Hall was dressed in purple and white as students gathered to listen to a special speech. Some may have just been passing by as the speaker caught their attention, but to others, it was a sign of relief that they weren’t alone. Nonetheless, inspirational messages on chalkboards, which invited students to jot down their thoughts on a specific topic, crowded the lawn across from the Brower Student Center.
This past week Delta Phi Epsilon hosted its annual Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders (ANAD) week in an attempt to promote self-love, raise funds and spread eating disorder awareness.
The week kicked off on Monday, Sept. 16 with a rather informative vigil at Green Hall about those suffering with eating disorders. Afterward, students were asked to take candles and make their way over to the Science Complex Fountain for a candle lightning, which was by no means a typical candle lighting.
Students dedicated the candle to themselves or someone they know who is fighting or has in the past struggled with an eating disorder. After lighting their candles, students placed them in the fountain to represent the drowning of their insecurities. As the candles all floated together, it was obvious that no one was alone.
“The most impactful part of the night was watching the candles float together,” senior biomedical engineering major Kendra Knowles said.
Allie Cullen, philanthropy chairperson of Delta Phi Epsilon, stated that her sorority hoped this week would bring awareness to eating disorders and support individuals and their families who may be suffering with the disease.
“The biggest misconception is that only females struggle with eating disorders,” Cullen said. Although a large portion of those with eating disorders are female, 10 percent of men suffer from an eating disorder as well, according to the National Eating Disorders Association. Even more surprising, one in five college women suffer from bulimia, according to the National Institute of Mental Health. This statistic and several more were given on Wednesday, Sept. 10 as Counseling and Psychological Services presented “The Perfect Body” workshop at Roscoe West Hall.
The workshop began as students were asked to write down a compliment, which they later shared, about the person sitting next to them. The room came alive as students performed skits demonstrating extreme dieting versus a healthy diet. The workshop concluded with a trivia round in which winners were issued prizes.
As the week winded down, Delta Phi Epsilon found a tasty way to raise funds. Students were given the opportunity to “pie” sorority members in the face after giving a small donation.
On Friday, Sept. 20, students laced up the rentals and bowled for a cause at Slocums Bowling Alley during an all-day fundraiser.
Other fundraising events during the week included a kickball tournament on Tuesday, Sept. 17 and a fundraiser with Palermos Pizzeria on Wednesday, Sept. 18. Although ANAD week is over, Delta Phi Epsilon hopes to keep eating disorder awareness up all year round.