By Vanessa Lopez
Cal Poly offers various types of birth control to students on
campus, though one has to know where to look.
Non-hormonal birth control methods such as condoms are
available, though a recent search on campus found that not a single
building offers any form of condom dispensers.
“We haven’t had condom machines in the [Bronco Student Center]
restrooms for over a year, closer to two years,” said David
Quezada, building services lead coordinator for the Bronco Student
Center. “The machines were empty because they were maintained by a
service which went out of business. We did not have keys to the
dispensers and chose to take them down since the Wellness Center
and the Health Center provide condoms.”
Condoms are available at the Wellness and Health Centers, where
students receive 10 condoms for a dollar.
However, the Pride Center offers free condoms to any student who
wishes to use them, and while the condoms are not name brands their
effectiveness, which is 86-98 percent, is still the same.
The condoms are donated to the Pride Center by outside clinics
that promote safer sex. Female condoms are available at the Health
Center for $8.15 but are 79-95 percent effective.
“I don’t understand why we wouldn’t just get a new vendor,” said
Ashley Hyde, fourth-year art student. “I can care less either way,
but it would just seem logical to get a new vendor instead of just
bringing down the dispensers. It’s a lot less embarrassing than
going up to a pharmacist or some guy in the Wellness Center and
asking for a condom.”
Students are encouraged to visit the Wellness or Health Centers
for further birth control information. Non-hormonal birth control
does not require a doctor’s visit and can be purchased at either
“All non-hormonal birth control can be bought over the counter,
except the diaphragm; students will need a prescription for it,”
said Antonia Young, a Health Center pharmacist.
Other options, such as hormonal treatments include Depo-Provera,
Ortho-Evra (the patch), and the pill. Some students, however, feel
insecure about Cal Poly’s selection of birth control.
“The Wellness Center offers classes on birth control options,”
said Ty Ramsower, Wellness Center coordinator. “We go over the
hormonal methods and the side effects, including the advantages and
disadvantages when using them.”
For many students, trust is still an issue when dealing with
such an important decision.
A study conducted by Guttmatcher Institute, an institute
dedicated to sexual and reproductive health, found that of the
approximately 750,000 teen pregnancies that occur each year, 82
percent are unintended. More than one quarter end in abortion in
the U.S. alone.
“I don’t think condom dispensers would make much of a
difference,” said Matt Seanez, a fourth-year history student. “If
they really need a condom, they’ll find it.”
Vanessa Lopez can be reached by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org
or by phone at (909) 869-3747.
Campus Facilities Offer Birth Control
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