Several Rogers State University undergraduate and graduate students, along with faculty member Dr. Sonya E. Munsell, received recognition for their involvement in last fall’s Oklahoma Eating Disorders Association (OEDA) events at the OEDA Symposium in Broken Arrow in November 2022.
Munsell, associate professor in the Department of Psychology and Sociology at RSU and founder and advisor for RSU National Eating Disorders Association (NEDA) Campus Warriors, a student group that raises awareness for eating disorders on campuses across the country, was elected vice president of the OEDA Board of Directors.
She attended the symposium with student organization members Olivia Cosper, senior, psychology major; Teah Ellard, sophomore, business entrepreneurship major; Carrigan Veach, senior, community counseling major; and first-year graduate student Lynn Williams, studying in the Master of Science in community counseling program.
The group gave a presentation titled “Raising Awareness of Eating Disorders on a College Campus,” detailing the growth and development of RSU NEDA Campus Warriors. They also shared about the benefits of student involvement in the Spring 2022 NEDA Walk, an event held locally in Tulsa at which walkers raised money to fund eating disorders education, prevention and support, as well as advocacy and research initiatives.
Veach and Williams presented research, including results of a study exploring eating disorders and cultural diversity, as well as research investigating the relationship between childhood trauma and eating disorders in males. Ellard shared about her own recovery journey from anorexia.
The following month, Ellard, Veach, Williams and graduate student Ronnie Epperly served as models for the OEDA’s Fall 2022 Walking With Worth fashion show at the Oklahoma Contemporary Arts Center in Oklahoma City, a fundraising event which featured 17 models of all body shapes and sizes.
At the event, Munsell also presented Ellard with the OEDA Volunteer of the Year Award.
Two Claremore boutiques provided clothing for the models, including Perfect Bride Boutique owned by RSU alumna Rianne Thomas and her mother, Elizabeth Ross-Acker, and The Men’s Shop, owned by Jerry Feese.
“This celebration of body diversity and positive body image helped spread awareness of eating disorders, and it raised funds to provide education and to organize much needed resources for those struggling with an eating disorder in the state of Oklahoma,” Munsell said.
RSU’s NEDA Campus Warriors is a non-profit organization devoted to preventing eating disorders, providing treatment referrals, and increasing the education and understanding of eating disorders, weight and body image.