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The Antelope

Breast cancer awareness: self-examine, seek support

Jenny Roush explains ways to help prevent breast cancer. Photo by Kosuke Yoshii / Antelope Staff

October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. On Oct. 9, Sigma Lambda Gamma and CHI Health hosted a Breast Cancer Awareness presentation on campus for students to attend.

The Chi Gamma sorority hosted the presentation in an effort to raise awareness among UNK students and the community.

“The goal for this presentation objective was to educate the public, teach the signs and symptoms of breast cancer and ways of prevention,” said Gibrana Perez Carbajal, president of the Chi Gamma Chapter of Sigma Lambda Gamma National Sorority Inc.

The topic was presented by guest speaker Jenny Roush, the CHI Health St. Francis Community Outreach Coordinator. Roush shared valuable information on ways to self-examine the body. She provided preventative steps students can take and the value of seeking medical help if there are any concerning changes. 

“Keep it simple,” Roush said. “The importance of water, exercising, good nutrition, self-care and making sure you go to your yearly appointments with your doctor.”

Students were presented with a new perspective on cancer. Roush emphasized how there are continual advancements in technology, detecting symptoms early and medical treatments. 

“Cancer is a chronic disease now,” Roush said. “Survival rates are so high because of all the screenings and the awareness.”

A breast self-exam model was included in the presentation, where one could identify what an abnormal lump may feel like in the breast. Roush also said the importance of taking the mammogram test and what doctors look for when the imaging is taken.

“Mammograms are so advanced and now there is 3D,” Roush said. “They really go down deep to figure out if there is a tumor or not.”

Roush’s presentation covered a wide range of topics for promoting healthy habits. She provided pamphlets for students to take home to learn more about the risk of cancer and other health-related topics.

During the presentation, Roush shared the life story of a woman who discovered a lump during a breast self-exam at the age of 32. Despite initial dismissals from her doctor due to her young age, the woman persisted and pushed for further testing, eventually leading to an early breast cancer diagnosis at stage two. She has been cancer-free for over a year. 

Roush highlighted the importance of being an advocate for one’s own health and seeking a second opinion if necessary.

“If you hear of somebody that has cancer, they usually want to talk and get those fears out and those emotions,” Roush said. “Kindness is so important.”

Carbajal said Sigma Lambda Gamma National Sorority, Inc is a sisterhood of empowered members who have chosen this affiliation as a means to achieve personal development in their lives and make a difference in the community.

“The inspiration came from our sorority’s national philanthropy which is Breast Cancer Awareness,” Carajal said. “This was the first year that Sigma Lambda Gamma held an event like this on campus. I hope that as an organization we can make this reoccurring for the future.”

The Chi Gamma chapter is currently promoting a raffle fundraiser for students to take part in. They are raffling an iPad 10th Generation where the proceeds will go to support breast cancer patients and survivors. Tickets are $15 each and are located in the bio of Chi Gamma’s Instagram account.

Carbajal also mentioned Chi Gamma’s efforts in getting involved or donating to the cancer center and other ways students can support breast cancer patients.

“The Forever Pink Foundation is a local organization here in Kearney,” Carbajal said. “This organization helps provide funds to breast cancer patients for items that insurance won’t cover such as some appointments, bras, wigs and utilities. If funds cannot be donated to the foundation, even volunteering or just reaching out to them and seeing what events they do host throughout the community is a way to get involved.”

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Emily Trotter
Emily Trotter, Reporter
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