Peer Health Advocates at Muhlenberg
Peer Health Advocates at Muhlenberg are student leaders who serve to promote the health and wellness of the campus community. To accomplish our mission, we:
- Empower all individuals in the community to engage in responsible decision-making by offering educational outreach activities and programming.
- Create a community support system that fosters active healthy lifestyles by connecting existing resources on campus.
- Lead the community in adopting health promoting behaviors by sustaining a healthy culture on campus.
History & Development
The idea for this organization was developed in Health Psychology, a service learning class taught by Dr. Kathy Harring. During the 2010-2011 academic year, Jessica Chu ’12, Anna Hill-Moses ’12 and Hannah Mitchell ’11 worked with Dr. Harring and Brynnmarie Dorsey, the director of the Health Center, to develop health promotion programs for Muhlenberg students. During their service learning experience, they researched the efficacy of peer health programs and found numerous studies citing the power of peer health promotion and education among college students. Acknowledging the Muhlenberg Health Center as a resource, recognizing the ability of a peer health advocate group to connect students with the Health Center and vice versa, and passionate about advocating for health and wellness among their peers, they extended their service-learning project into a healthy campus initiative. The planning of the Spring 2011 Wellness Fair by the students in collaboration with the Health Center was a huge success, attracting more campus members to the Wellness Fair than ever before. After a recruitment and interview process in the Fall of 2011, PHAM initiated 19 members in Spring 2012 and is currently an active group at Muhlenberg College.