Patricia Durner
UNK Counseling Care and Women’s Center, 308.865.8248

The University of Nebraska at Kearney will host a week of events in observance of National Eating Disorder Awareness Week, Monday-Friday, Feb. 26 – March 2.
The national week of awareness, which was started by the National Eating Disorder Association (NEDA), has been an annual event since 1987, with this year marking the 20th anniversary of the event. According to the NEDA Web site,, the purpose of the week is to get Americans to “Be comfortable with [their] genes. Wear jeans that fit the REAL you.”
The events at UNK will take place throughout the week, with a variety of informational sessions, speakers and movie screenings for interested students to take part in.
“Students will have a greater awareness of eating disorders, as well as the effects it has on individuals, family and friends, by attending the events,” said Patricia Durner, associate director of the UNK Counseling Care and Women’s Center.
The events are sponsored by Counseling and Health Care, the Women’s Center, Randall Hall Council, Residence Hall Council, Chartwells Dining Service and Peer Health at the university.
Students will have the opportunity to view an informational table in the Nebraskan Student Union Atrium throughout the week. In addition, plaid ribbons will be available in the Atrium for students to wear in support of eating disorder awareness.
The Chartwells cafeteria will offer featured food items during the week to promote healthy eating.
Private screenings are to take place twice next week for the purpose of determining whether students have eating disorders. The first screenings will take place in both University Residence North and South on Tuesday from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. On Thursday, students will have another opportunity to attend screenings in the Nebraskan Student Union Atrium from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Durner said the purpose of the screenings is not only to determine whether a student has an existing eating disorder.
“By completing the eating disorder screening, students will have a better understanding of whether they are at risk of developing an eating disorder,” she said.
A brown bag lunch will take place Wednesday, Feb. 28, from noon to 1 p.m. in Room 312 of the student union. The lunch will feature speaker Nurse Practitioner Deena Sughroue from Kearney Clinic and UNK Health Care. Sughroue’s presentation is titled “The Who, What, Where, Why of E.D. (Eating Disorders).”
“Her presentation provides a good foundation for the understanding of eating disorders,” Durner said. The presentation is free and open to the public.
The week will be capped-off with a showing of the HBO documentary “Thin.” The film documents the lives of four separate women who have checked into a Florida clinic that specializes in the treatment of eating disorders. The documentary will be shown at 5:30 p.m. Friday, March 2, in the Mantor Hall Lounge.
Durner said the events during National Eating Disorder Awareness Month are not only for those students who are concerned with their own eating habits.
“We encourage everyone to attend the various events on campus,” she said. “The events may be helpful not only for themselves, but also for helping a friend or loved one.”