Student Council hopes to educate students on breast cancer symptoms and prevention

ITA students cheer as the senior Powderpuff team scores. Photo taken by Sebastian Romero

by Alexa Sanchez-Nava, Co-Editor-in-Chief

Now that Breast Cancer Awareness Month has come to a close, Indian Trail looks back on the efforts of the Student Council in bringing awareness to such a prominent topic, stressing the importance of taking preventative measures at the high school level into adulthood. 

Breast Cancer Awareness Month has historically taken place in October, with its origins dating back to 1985. As a collaborative effort of the American Cancer Society and Imperial Chemical Industries, the two aimed to encourage people to go in for mammograms as they were deemed to be the most effective means of fighting breast cancer. In addition, Breast Cancer Awareness also gained its well-known pink ribbon symbol in the late 1900s, originally having been peach instead of pink, courtesy of Charlotte Haley and the garnered support of large organizations.

Student Council President DaJanay Greenwood sat down with two of her Student Council peers, McKenna Schroeder and Mia Parr, as they introduced the idea of “making breast cancer awareness more available in the school” leading to them “making flyers to hang around, as well as Ignacio Perez’s idea in his group to make the bulletin boards around the school.” Schroeder and Parr also suggested that they move the topic to the announcements, which Greenwood was happy to push, commending Schroeder and Parr for their role in the process, as “very good students who are really educated on Breast Cancer Awareness.”

When asked about the direct impact Greenwood has seen from her peers and teachers, she adds she had one or two hiccups with “a singular person in power,” but the overall responses from the student body have been very positive and she noted appreciation from her teachers for the informative flyers and boards scattered throughout the building: “people love [the posters], people have been saying they’re aesthetically pleasing to the eyes, it’s nice, it’s informative.”

Breast cancer, like many diseases, crosses many intersecting identities, which is why, “[no matter] how old you are or who you are, you’re at risk of getting breast cancer,” Greenwood adds, highlighting her belief that knowing common symptoms of the disease can be extremely beneficial to anyone.

“I feel like a lot of people kind of just ignore the fact that it’s Breast Cancer Awareness month and just wear pink because of it,” comments McKenna Schroeder, noting this as one of her motives for centering Breast Cancer Awareness in the efforts of the Student Council. 

In addition to her hope of spreading important information to the student body, Schroeder also shares the direct impact breast cancer has had on her life and family as another main motivation for her efforts: “My mom and grandma both have breast cancer, and so I think it is really important.” She stresses the notability of knowing the history behind breast cancer and acknowledging that it is “a real actual thing” within younger audiences in our school and community.

Throughout October, the Student Council put up informative posters and decorated the bulletin boards around the school, but they also helped raise money for breast cancer research, most notably at the Powder Puff game held earlier in the month. “We sold a bunch of pink things, donuts, cookies, concessions,” mentions Schroeder.

Although the month is now over, Greenwood and Schroeder share a similar notion that breast cancer should not be a forgotten subject until the next year comes, but rather something that should be more openly discussed amongst all age groups and taken seriously on a day-to-day basis.