When it comes to skin cancer prevention, Connie Lunde, RVHS health educator, wants to make sure her students get the message; “It’s not about scaring them but just raising awareness,” said Lunde.
When it comes to skin cancer prevention, Connie Lunde, RVHS health educator, wants to make sure her students get the message. “It’s not about scaring them but just raising awareness,” said Lunde. Lunde said she talks about skin cancer issues in the required sophomore health class trying her best to “hit them between the eyes.”
Lunde said it is not just about sharing statistics with students. At times they need to see the impact. As a health educator, Lunde can also add personal experience to what she offers to her students. She has people from her own family who have been diagnosed with skin cancer, and she said just recently they found a patch on her skin. “It’s definitely genetic,” she said, adding certain skin types have an increased propensity toward skin cancer. Each year she has the students go through a series of questions that include everything from eye and hair color to the number of freckles one has. Each of these plus other traits play a part in the increased risk of skin cancer. Lunde said because there are so many issues to cover in her health class there is not a lot of time set aside to address skin cancer. While she would love to cover all of the material in a two-week curriculum she has at her fingertips, she knows just presenting the most important information in a way that impacts them can make a difference. As students begin to think about prom and graduation events which are coming later this year, their thoughts, especially those of teenage girls, gravitate toward getting that tanned look. Lunde said she knows there are some who have already started tanning for this year’s prom. “The perception is that tanning is beautiful,” said Lunde, adding she feels it is part of her mission to help kids see their beauty does not lie in anything more than who they are as they are.