When MSUM Wellness Educators learned that January was testicular cancer awareness month, they thought an appropriate way to spread awareness would be to host a dodgeball tournament.
The event, “Be Besties with your Testes” was open to all students on Jan. 31 in the Wellness Center. The silliness was apparent in the names of the teams. For example, the team “Dragon Balls Deep” did particularly well in the tournament.
“We hope that male students will see that because we’re basing this event around testicular cancer, it exists and shouldn’t be ignored. It can happen to anyone at any age,” said Kelli Nadeau, mass communications junior and wellness educator.
The Wellness Educators are an organization based out of Hendrix Clinic and Counseling Center. They work to promote healthy living on campus. For this event, they teamed up with the intramural coordinators on campus.
“People are comfortable with breast cancer now. This was a way to get the message of testicular cancer and self exams out,” said Lynn Peterson, the Wellness Educators adviser.
At their weekly meeting, the wellness educators came up with the idea of the dodgeball tournament. Potential names included “Go Nuts” and “We Bust our Balls.”
The Wellness Educators said students think cancer only happens to older people, so they wanted to emphasize that it happens to young people too.
“Testicular cancer is the number one cancer for men ages 20 to 39. It’s also the most curable cancer if it’s caught early,” Peterson said.
Cards with instructions on how to perform a self examination were handed out at the tournament. T-shirts were given to the first 50 people to arrive.
The cards informed students that self exams should be performed once a month. It is important to remember that testicular cancer can be cured. Finding it early is the best way to fight it.
“Dodgeball tournaments are always fun, and this is a funny way to talk about something serious,” said Ryan Olson, an exercise science junior.
The Wellness Educators are recruiting new members. Applications are available in the Hendrix Clinic and Counseling Center.
BY SARAH TYRE