Last week, Knox County Health Department (KCHD) staff members administered 100 sexually transmitted disease tests to Kenyon students at no cost — almost as many tests as at last semester’s three free clinics combined.
The clinic, held at the Cox Health and Counseling Center on Sept. 21, was part of a program launched last semester in conjunction with the KCHD, according to Director of Health Services Kim Cullers. The clinics are funded by an Ohio Department of Health infertility prevention grant, which provides free testing and treatment for gonorrhea and chlamydia to those 13 through 39.
The three clinics held last semester administered a total of 109 STD tests.
No appointments were required to get tested, and students gathered in the conference room in the counseling center to fill out the prerequisite paperwork.
“For the most part, Kenyon’s a pretty sex-positive campus,” Claire Robertson ’17, a Beer and Sex advisor, said. “If you wanted it to be something that was like, ‘Nobody can know that I’m getting tested,’ you’d probably have to make an appointment because there were people around, but for the most part that isn’t really the campus we’re on. It’s pretty OK to just go get tested. No one’s going to judge you for that.”
Robertson said the spike in the number of tests administered could be due to students wanting to get tested after the summer.
Results were sent to individuals via text message one week after the clinic, a method Robertson favors. “I think that it’s pretty reflective of the modern era that we live in that you get STD-tested and you get your results texted to you a week later,” she said.
The next clinic is scheduled for Nov. 16.