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Hokie Wellness educates students about the dangers of vaping

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Category: impact Video duration: Hokie Wellness educates students about the dangers of vaping
The Health Education & Awareness Team (HEAT) is a group of students trained by the health educators at Hokie Wellness to deliver fun, interactive, and educational health and wellness programs to students. HEAT conducted vaping prevention education sessions called, “Being Vape Free Is Up To You,” for Blacksburg Middle School students. Students were given information about the health impacts of vaping, strategies to deal with peer pressure, and resources on how to stop vaping.

We are definitely concerned that vaping has become more prevalent in students. We're seeing that down into the middle school age. And the HEAT students from Virginia Tech are here today at Blacksburg Middle School to talk to their classes about not smoking, dipping, and especially not vaping, because we're seeing a lot of that at this age. So we had a brain hat that we would wear during the program to really show the students like what happens to your brain when you start vaping, because your brain isn't fully developed until you're about 25. And your brain's going through all these changes. And like at a young age, nicotine is just messing with all of your neural connections and it makes it harder to learn. They have bags they open, it's interactive. We have like a little skit. We have like props with all the different chemicals that are in tobacco, just like different things like that to keep them engaged and give them a little more visual into some of the more complicated things that we're talking about. Some of the resources that they covered in the Tobacco Free Hokies program is, there's new online texts programs, so middle school students can get text-based help and tips and encouragement and craving control. We also give them information about really good websites that have real accurate information. I think there's a lot of things that you can be peer pressured to. And it's really hard, it's really hard to say no. Teaching middle schoolers and high schoolers about like, 'Hey, this is why you should say no.' And then making it up to them to say 'no,' I think is really like that just makes me feel really good because I wish I had that when I was in middle and high school.