Events Seek to ‘Boost’ Student Self-Confidence

Jena Morrow

Jan. 23, 2015

BLOOMINGTON, Ill. — Cultivating a positive attitude about body image and building self-confidence is the focus of “BOOST Week” Jan. 27-29 at Illinois Wesleyan University.

"Self-esteem is linked to an array of issues such as depression, anxiety, body image, motivation levels, relationship issues and disordered eating amongst both men and women,” said Christina Armstrong, staff counselor and outreach coordinator at Counseling and Consultation Services (CCS) at Illinois Wesleyan.

“BOOST Week” events include Scale Smashing activities Jan. 27-28. Students will have an opportunity to take a mallet to a bathroom scale. The event challenges individuals to redefine their worth and beauty by letting go of those numbers that weigh them down, according to BOOST Week organizers. The activities will be held Jan. 27 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. in CNS and Jan. 28 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the DugOut.

Author and behavioral health specialist Jena Morrow will speak about eating disorders and body image issues Jan. 28 at 7 p.m. in the Hansen Student Center. The author of Hollow: An Unpolished Tale, (2010), Morrow’s book is a memoir of her three-decade-long struggle with anorexia. She works at Timberline Knolls, a Lemont, Ill. residential treatment center for women and girls battling eating disorders, substance abuse, mood disorders and trauma. Morrow’s talk is free and open to the public.

The week’s events conclude with Operation Beautiful Jan. 29 in CNS from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Students can buy Confidence Cupcakes for $1 and write positive messages on post-it notes for themselves and others to be placed around campus.

BOOST Week is sponsored by SOCA (Students Organizing Campus Awareness) and CCS. Last year over 165 students participated in BOOST Week events, according to Armstrong. “The knowledge gained from attending these types of awareness events can be invaluable,” she added.

By Kathy Tun ’16