We partner with public high schools that lack health education
PHE works with high schools that lack health education and in which the majority of the students live at or below the poverty line. These students experience a disproportionate number of serious health risks ranging from teenage pregnancy to obesity.
We train college students to teach a comprehensive health curriculum
PHE recruits, selects, and trains college student volunteers to teach high school students a comprehensive health curriculum consisting of thirteen standardized health workshops on topics ranging from decision-making and sexual health to substance abuse and nutrition. Several studies demonstrate that teenagers better absorb health information when it is delivered by educators of a similar age as opposed to adult educators: 74% of PHE high school students said that having college students lead PHE workshops helped them learn about the health topics. As slightly older peers, PHE volunteers provide the benefits of peer education while also conveying the advantages of traditional instruction. They deliver health information to teenagers in a language and context that is relevant to their everyday experiences, yet they can also serve as role models, demonstrating healthy behaviors and the successful transition from high school to college.
We give teenagers the knowledge and skills they need to make healthy decisions
In the classroom, PHE high school students articulate their values and goals, learn basic, accurate health information, explore attitudes and perceptions of peer norms and peer pressure, analyze the influence of culture and the media on health, discuss barriers to healthy behaviors and strategies to overcome them, and identify and learn how to use the health resources in their communities. PHE volunteers help high school students practice skills such as effective communication, risk evaluation and prevention, limit-setting, and decision-making in role-plays and scenarios that resemble difficult, real-life situations. By applying the skills they learn in PHE workshops outside of the classroom, PHE high school students can make informed decisions that will help them stay and excel in school, join and remain part of the workforce, and become healthy adults capable of producing healthy families.
We foster a commitment to public service in college students
For many PHE volunteers, their experience in the classroom compels them to make a commitment to public service through their school work, jobs, volunteer work, or philanthropy. 90% of past PHE volunteers said that their experience with PHE affected their career, academic or volunteer plans. Many of these volunteers will go on to be teachers, doctors, public interest lawyers, and policymakers who will continue to serve their communities throughout their lives.