Are you coming?: Sex Positive Week arrives on campus

Jessie Castellano, Staff Writer

This week, beginning on Valentine’s Day, Speak UP Bucknell hosted their annual Sex Positive Week for the campus community. 

Speak UP is a student organization advised by the Interpersonal Violence Prevention and Advocacy Coordinator, Linsey Higgins. The organization advocates for awareness and prevention of sexual misconduct, relationship violence and stalking on campus. 

The organization has advertised Sex Positive week as space and time designed to foster a practical and forward-looking view of sex. As the name implies, it’s all about sex positivity.

“Sex positivity at its core is all about viewing sex as a normal, pleasurable thing—most people do it,” Fae Groves 24 said, who is now in her second semester as a Speak UP peer and holds a position on the events committee. “By viewing sex from a positive standpoint, it counteracts the negative stigma that abstinence-heavy sex education puts on anything sex-related and enables people to have open (and very important) conversations regarding sexual health.”

Each day of the week, Speak UP has hosted events to help students talk, learn and feel comfortable about sex. 

To start the week off, the first event on Monday was Orange4Love Day, where members of the community were encouraged to dress in orange to express their solidarity with victims of teen violence and relationships. Students were also able to decorate an orange heart in the ELC to share what they enjoy about love. 

On Tuesday, students were invited to attend Students Speak for Sex Week in the ELC, a Q&A session led by a student panel. The session aimed to discuss sexuality, especially the aspects that not many people talk about due to the stigmas surrounding them. This year, the event was hosted by Avery Landon ’22 and Kendall Garnett ’22. The panelists were: Aiden Perry ’22, Fae Groves ’24, Helena Strauss ’24, Isaiah Mays ’23 and MK Lance ’22. 

“Sexual health and consent education has always been extremely important to me both as a person with a uterus and a queer person,” Strauss said. “So when Speak Up started planning the sex positivity panel, I knew I wanted to be on it. Not only did I have fun, I learned so much from the other panelists. Sex positivity, is especially important on a campus like Bucknell where Greek life and hookup culture dominate the social scene. I am so glad that I was given the opportunity and platform to speak about these issues.” 

Lance shared a similar sentiment. 

“I’m glad there was an opportunity on campus to openly and positively discuss sex. Typically when sex is talked about on a campus-wide platform we’re talking about sexual assault, rape, abuse, among other things. While this is incredibly important to continue to talk about, I also think it’s beneficial to the Bucknell community and society as a whole to discuss safe, fun, exciting sex,” Lance said. 

Sophia Giannelli 22 attended the panel and had positive things to say. 

“I really appreciated hearing such candid and respectful responses from a diverse  group of students talking about taboo subjects like sex and sexuality. These topics, while prevalent on Bucknell’s campus and social scene, are not talked about enough which creates unrealistic expectations and can lead to problematic situations,” Giannelli said. 

 “I <3 the Female Orgasm,” an educational presentation led by sex educators Lindsay Fram and Marshall Miller, was held on Wednesday in the Terrace room. 

“I was most excited for the “I <3 the Female Orgasm” presentation,” Groves said, although she did express she is excited for all the events. “It was both educational and funny, and hosted by an outside organization! Regardless of your gender identity, it’s important to recognize and learn about sexuality from a perspective that isn’t heteronormative or male-appealing.” 

Thursday, “Love, Simon,” a queer romance film, was presented in the Gallery Theatre at 6 p.m. This film emphasizes that anyone, regardless of sexual orientation, can participate in healthy, romantic and sexual relationships. 

This morning, Speak UP was able to host a more relaxed event led by Professor of Women and Gender Studies Jenna Christian. Interested students could engage in conversations concerning body neutrality while enjoying a morning mug of coffee. 

Sex Positive Week was able to bring together the entire community to participate in meaningful conversations and prove that it is always essential and ideal to talk about sex positivity, safe sex, consent and more.  

In addition to Sex Positive Week, Speak UP hosts workshops for all first-year students and other groups on campus, as well as a variety of events throughout the year. 

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