Health Sciences & Social Work


inority Health Month_Color Run_Walk_ Flyer

Unbreathable poster

Surviving the Unexpected

walk/ride poster

Severe Weather poster

Sexual Health Poster

Rest, Repair, Recharge Prostate Cancer Awareness

HIV Prevention Social Media Training

Recycling poster

Mental Health Awareness

Sexual Health



Minority Health Month logo

Minority Health Month: April 2024

Western Illinois University will join the nation in recognizing April as Minority Health Month with a variety of activities that have been planned to kick off the month-long celebration.

This Year's Theme Is: "Be the Source for Better Health"

This year’s theme focuses on improving health outcomes for racial and ethnic minority and American Indian/Alaska Native communities by providing them with culturally and linguistically competent healthcare services, information, and resources. When patients are provided with culturally and linguistically appropriate information, they are empowered to create healthier outcomes for themselves and their communities.

All events are free and open to the public.

Keynote Address (Central Time)

Fredrick L. Echols, MD
Dr. Fredrick Echols
April 8 at 5:30 p.m. | Union Capitol Rooms

Or join via zoom at
Meeting ID: 970 0608 7189 | Passcode: 730862

Dr. Fredrick L. Echols is a distinguished physician and public health specialist with more than 15 years of experience in the field. He has successfully assisted public and private organizations tackle complex health challenges by implementing evidence-based approaches. Dr. Echols's expertise has also been instrumental in empowering communities and governments to leverage their existing health and social service infrastructure effectively.

Dr. Echols's illustrious academic background includes graduating from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Population Health Training in Place program and the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials and Morehouse School of Medicine Diverse Executives Leading in Public Health program. He was also selected as a President Obama Leader in the inaugural cohort.

Throughout his career, Dr. Echols has served in various capacities, including as a consultant and subject matter expert for national and international public health organizations. He also held the positions of Chief Executive Officer for Cure Violence Global and Director of Health and Health Commissioner for the City of St. Louis, where he was responsible for overseeing all public health regulations and departmental operations, including leading the city's COVID-19 pandemic response.

In addition, Dr. Echols served as the Director of Communicable Disease, Emergency Preparedness, Vector, and Veterinary Programs for the St. Louis County Department of Public Health, where he was responsible for managing daily operations, staff development and training, strategic planning, fiscal management of a multi-million-dollar budget, and program development and implementation. Before this, he worked as the Chief of Communicable Diseases for the Illinois Department of Public Health and as a physician in the U.S. Navy, managing a team of medical and ancillary personnel.

Dr. Echols has also been the principal investigator for numerous public health research initiatives funded locally and federally. He continues to guide national, federal, and international health organizations and works globally to improve health outcomes for the world's most vulnerable and marginalized populations.

Events (Central Time) 

30-minute  "Let’s Talk” Workshops hosted by the  University Counseling Center
  • April 4 | 1:15 - 1:45 p.m. | Algonquin Room in the Union | Finding Self-Compassion
  • April 11 | 1:15 - 1:45 p.m. | Algonquin Room in the Union | Diversity - It's more than just Race!
  • April 18 | 1:15 - 1:45 p.m. | Algonquin Room in the Union | Stinking Thinking
  • April 25 | 1:15 - 1:45 p.m. | Algonquin Room in the Union | Gratitude Logs

Presentations (Central Time)

  • April 1 | 12 p.m. |Stipes Hall | Walk, Drive or Ride with Us to Chandler Park

    Start point: back of Stipes Hall, through campus to the end point, Chandler Park 12:30 Mayor's proclamation.

  • April 1 | 4 p.m. | Lincoln Room | Severe Weather Events: Fright, Fight or Freeze?

    From fear to prepared, we will empower the community of Macomb in safeguarding against adverse weather events. Learn how to meet individual needs and reduce vulnerabilities.

  • April 2 | 12:30 p.m. | Stipes rm TBD | A Sexual Health Awareness Campaign

    Come learn about sexual health on campus. Presented in conjunction with Beu Health Center.

  • April 2 | 2 - 3 p.m. | ST 207 | livestream: | Prostate Cancer Awareness: It’s not Just for Men! 

    Learn about the disease and help yourself or help the men you love!

  • April 2 | 3:30 p.m. | Cardinal/Oak Room, University Union | Rest, Recharge, Repeat: Prioritizing Healthy Sleeping Habits at WIU

    Rest, Recharge, Repeat is a compelling presentation on advocating for the prioritization of health sleeping habits at WIU. It emphasizes the importance of sleep for student well-being and academic success.

  • April 2 | 4 p.m. | MCC Boardroom | The Effect of Adverse Climate Conditions on International Students: Local Climate Action

    This event using documented negative outcomes of climate change on international students and serves up personalized interventions to help mitigate those outcomes in the future. Come join us!

  • April 2 | 4 p.m. | Capital Room | Ready, Set, Go!: Surviving the Unexpected

    In this session you will learn how to survive a hurricane…and perhaps a few other weather-related emergencies! Come join us so you are prepared for the unexpected.

  • April 4 | 3 p.m. | Stipes  501 | Reclaiming Tomorrow: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

    Embark on a transformative journey of reclaiming tomorrow and discover the power we hold to shape a sustainable future.

  • April 5 | 2:15 p.m. | livestream: | Mental Health Awareness: Breaking barriers and building the bridges
  • April 12 | 4 p.m. | Brophy Hall 232 | Unveiling the Power of Social Engagement: Exploring the Impact of Social Activities on University Life

    Through a deep dive into the neglected dimensions of health among international students at WIU, we will uncover the interplay between social activities and the overall university experience.

  • April 16 | 1 - 2 p.m. | University Union, Chicago Room| Beyond the Plate: Understanding and Addressing Nutrition Disparities in Minority Communities

    The presentation is by  the Student Health Advisory Committee .

  • April 16 | 6:30 p.m. | MCC| Sexual Health: Ignorance Can Cost You...A Panel Discussion

    There will be free HIV/STI testing throughout the day, followed by a panel discussion. The mobile testing unit will be located outside of the University Union.

  • April 18 | 1:30 p.m. | Stipes 107 | Enhancing well-being: Enabling access to Cultural Cuisine for International Graduate Students

    Access to cultural foods enhance overall well-being for international students. Come learn how!

  • April 22 | 4 p.m. | Stipes 207 | Mind Matters: Addressing Mental Health Challenges among International Students

    This presentation will shed light on the often-overlooked mental health challenges faced by international students. Highlights include creating supportive environments and culturally sensitive strategies to promote well-being and academic success.

  • April 23 | 1 p.m. | Stipes 207 | Myth Busting: Unveiling the Untapped Benefits of Student Health Insurance

    In this session the presenters will focus on navigating student health insurance complexities. The hope is to reduce students' challenges in understanding their insurance, ensuring easier access to health care.

  • April 25 | 11:30 a.m. | Stipes 107 | Preventive Healthcare

    We will focus on proactive measures you can take to maintain well-being and prevent health issues before they arise. Some of these measures include simple screenings we all have heard about.

  • Activities (Central Time)

    •  | back of the University Union | 11:30am | Free STI/HIV Testing  
      Illinois Department of Public Health Mobile Testing Unit

    • April 20 | 1:00 p.m. | Vince Grady Field | Color Run/Walk
    • April 22 | 7:30 - 8:30 p.m. |MCC Lawn| Unbreathable: The Fight for Healthy Air

      Free drinks and popcorn. Rain location inside the MCC.

Sponsors: BEU Health Center; Campus Rec Center; Casa Latina; City of Macomb - Mayor's Office;  CSAF; College of Education and Human Services; Department of Health Sciences and Social Work; Disability Resource Center; Dr. Maureen Bezold’s Master of Public Health Students in HS 512 and HS 513; Gwendolyn Brooks Cultural Center; Macomb Starbucks; McDonough County Health Department; Minority Health Month Planning Committee; Office of the Provost and Academic Vice President; Office of Justice, Inclusion, Diversity and Equity; Office of the President; Physical Plant- Facilities Management; Sodexo; University Communications & Marketing; University Counseling Center; Veterans Resource Center; WIU Bookstore; WIU Foundation; Women’s Center; Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc.; Dr. Jeremy Robinett’s class (RPTA 467) ; HyVee; LGBTQ*A Resource Center; WIRC