To inform students about the dangers of anorexia, bulimia and other common eating disorders, College of the Canyons is hosting an Eating Disorders Awareness Day, which will be held at the Valencia campus from noon to 2 p.m. Tuesday.
The event was prompted by the National Eating Disorder Awareness Week, which is an initiative that’s sponsored by the National Eating Disorder Association lasting from Feb. 25 to March 3.
The event is strictly about giving students facts on nutrition, healthy eating and what that entails, said Larry Schallert, assistant director of COC’s Student Health & Wellness Center. “It’s one of the things we do to let people know these things happen, there’s help and you can recover.”
As a result, Associate Social Worker Michael Graves, who serves as an intern at COC, will be on campus Tuesday to hand out informational fliers and answer any questions that students may have on the subject, Schallert said. The sole purpose is to draw attention to the eating disorders that affect those who reside in the Santa Clarita Valley and beyond.
“We did something similar last year at the college,” he said. “It was big success and we were impressed by the number of students who were interested in learning more.”
Eating disorders are something that a lot of people contend with, Schallert added, “and we want to let people know there’s help. If you want to reach out, (then) we will get you the answers.”
“We know that eating disorders are out there. We see it in the health center,” Schallert said, adding that the college works closely with medical doctors when they find somebody who is struggling with eating disorders.
“Students will study hard, but they forget good nutrition is important to taking care of yourself,” he said. “Sometimes it gets to a point where binge eating or purging is a problem, but we want students to know that we aren’t judging. We try to make sure we discuss it from a point that it’s a barrier to success in college as well as general wellness.”