Penn Medicine's Abramson Cancer Center and the Pi Mu Mu Chapter of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity hosted Men’s Wellness Day.
On Saturday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., community members were invited to the Irvine Auditorium to partake in the event, which provided a variety of resources like free screening and tests, specifically geared toward promoting men’s health. This year marked the first time that Penn was involved in Men’s Wellness Day.
Some of these free tests included screening for prostate cancer, colon cancer, and hepatitis. HIV and AIDS rapid testing was offered, sponsored by the Penn Center for AIDS Research.
In addition to physical exams, blood pressure, cholesterol, diabetes, artery disease, mental health, and vision screenings were offered to attendees. Participants were encouraged to bring home vitamins and other health food items, such as pistachios and eggs.
The Omega Psi Phi Fraternity is a historically Black fraternity and was a major sponsor in this year’s event. The Pi Mu Mu Chapter includes primarily students from Penn as well as Drexel University and Villanova University.
Keenan Wise — a member of Drexel University’s Class of 2023 and of the Pi Mu Mu Chapter — told The Daily Pennsylvanian that the event sought to help attendees live healthily.
“The whole idea of it all is making sure everyone is getting their check ups [and] making sure they’re aware of their health,” Wise said. “It was an information session, there were tables set up talking about how to take care of yourself as you get older and different things that need to be done.”
To encourage participants to take advantage of the available resources, they were entered in one of various raffles if they obtained signatures from five tables that event goers engaged with. The largest prize was a 55-inch TV.
The event’s primary goal was to educate the community about health and promote wellness among men. Wise stated that, specifically for the Black community, the event was an important step in the right direction.
“In the African American community, I think health often falls by the wayside,” Wise said. “I think it’s exciting to see that African American men are taking [their health] into consideration more now than before.”
According to Wise, women were also included in this year’s event, with educational programs and resources for them. These resources included family information and prenatal vitamins.
The event was cosponsored by many other Penn student groups and organizations, including the African-American Resource Center, Black Men at Penn, Penn Men of Color, and the Penn Center for Africana Studies. The Institute of Clinical Bioethics at St. Joseph’s University and Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies of Johnson & Johnson joined in helping the day’s offerings.