Online Program

Effective HIV prevention for undergraduate students at hispanic serving universities

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Monica Faulkner, PhD, School of Social Work, The University of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX
Ellie Haggerty, MPH, Cardea Center for Health and Human Services, Cardea Center for Health and Human Services, Austin, TX
Jo Elda Castillo-Alaniz, Student Health and Wellness, Texas A&M Kingsville, Kingsville, TX
Eugenia Curet, PhD, The University of Texas at Brownsville, The University of Texas at Brownsville, Brownsville, TX
Alfonso Carlon, BA, Cardea Services, Cardea Center for Health and Human Services, Austin, TX
BACKGROUND: The HIV/AIDS Partnership (“Partnership”) is a three year demonstration project working with two Hispanic Serving Institutions in South Texas to improve HIV knowledge and attitudes towards prevention among college students. In order to inform the partnership's activities, a qualitative study was conducted at both campuses to assess the best means of providing students with HIV prevention information and services.

METHODS: Six focus groups were conducted with students (n=40). Participants were recruited through flyers, list serves and campus newspapers. All participants were Latino undergraduates. The focus groups followed a semi-structured interview guide which asked students about their attitudes and beliefs about HIV and HIV prevention services. Focus groups were transcribed and analyzed using conventional content analysis.

RESULTS: The primary finding is that students felt their culture and family inhibited them from ever seeking services that might suggest they were sexually active. As such, participants relayed multiple anecdotes containing incorrect information about HIV and their own discomfort with issues related to sexual activity. In order to reach students on Hispanic campuses, students suggested requiring human sexuality courses for incoming freshman and ensuring confidentiality at student health services by not having student employees working there.

CONCLUSIONS: Despite the fact that participants were students living apart from their parents, family and cultural ties prevented them from obtaining sexual healthcare due to fear that they will be perceived as sexually active or HIV positive. Prevention activities with Hispanic college students should address cultural barriers and ensure confidential and anonymous services as much as possible.

Learning Areas:

Administer health education strategies, interventions and programs
Advocacy for health and health education
Assessment of individual and community needs for health education
Diversity and culture
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Program planning

Learning Objectives:
Discuss barriers to HIV prevention among Latino students at Hispanic serving Institutes of Higher Education. List methods for promoting HIV prevention on Hispanic serving Institutes of Higher Education.

Keyword(s): Peer Education, HIV/AIDS

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: Presenters are qualified to present because they have been involved in the administration and program activities of the federal grant which supported this project. Presenters have a variety of experience both in programmatic and research activities related to sexual health, Latino communities and college health programs.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.