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Brandeis University's Community Newspaper — Waltham, Mass.

Students pack in to see ‘Oh Megan’ sexology presentation

Published: November 16, 2012
Section: Features, Top Stories

This past Monday SSIS (Student Sexuality Information Service) brought back to campus Megan Andelloux, a certified sexuality educator and sexologist, presenting “Oh Megan: Orchestrating Orgasms.” Students had trouble finding a seat in Upper Sherman, with the large turnout.

“Megan’s events consistently have 250-300 students at each,” Mark Hajjar, co-coordinator of SSIS said. SSIS is a vocal club on campus, given it hosts numerous events and is omnipresent at first-year orientation and floor meetings. Students have enjoyed “Oh Megan’s” presentations on campus again and again, due to the risqué topic of sex, her presentation skills and the formidable club that is SSIS.

As described by Hajjar, “SSIS’s main goal is to serve the Brandeis community. This primarily manifests itself through counseling … but also through the sale of, and education about safer sex products.” SSIS believes that bringing Oh Megan to campus is important, dedicating a portion of their funds to her each semester. “She is able to present a wide array of topics to our students in a fun and engaging format,” Hajjar said.

He mentions that sexuality is a giant spectrum and presenters often find it difficult to include every diverse version of human sexuality.

“Megan has a talent for presenting different aspects of sexuality in ways that engage students and make them think, while still remaining fun and inviting,” he said.

Hajjar believes that Oh Megan is an invaluable learning experience. “For students who would like to explore the concept of sexuality further, it’s a great opportunity.”

At the start of “Orchestrating Orgasm,” Oh Megan outlined the goals of her presentation, which included describing what it is that orgasms are, the average length, the various types and how to have one. A practiced public speaker, Oh Megan’s talent is putting audiences at ease. Directly telling the audience it is ok to giggle and ask questions, she even handed out her phone number so students could text questions if they felt uncomfortable asking it out loud. “I like when people interact with me like I am a living person,” Megan said, encouraging people to comment during every slide. Students did not need much prompting, hands were raised and questions called out enthusiastically.

Oh Megan provided students with useful information they may not have received from any other source. She defined orgasm as the “involuntary muscle contraction in the lower pelvic region,” describing how it is a release of sexual tension that also involves endorphins. She defined people who have “serial organisms,” something she believes our culture is obsessed with. Yet, she also cautioned that the way our society discusses orgasms is often different from the way they actually are, a person can have an orgasm and not even be aware of it.

While she cautioned at the start of the presentation that this specific topic had in the past made people pass out, the majority of her time presenting was spent going over minute details and answering many questions.

In response to Oh Megan’s more risqué material, Hajjar comments, “I would image there are some [people who do not approve of Oh Megan], but we’ve never really received any negative feedback about her from Brandeis.” He describes Oh Megan as “consistently being a very positive experience,” especially in regards to her success in educating the Brandeis community.

SSIS itself, even without Oh Meghan, perhaps may be one of the most widely -used clubs on campus.

“I think the two services that benefit the student body the most are our safer sex education and our counseling,” said Hajjar. “[They] really go hand in hand.” SSIS also utilizes texting, allowing students to ask any question quickly and without embarrassment on their phones. Hajjar comments on the questions SSIS receives, saying, “Many of our students have questions about sex and sexuality and for them to have a safe place to ask questions and voice their concerns about sex is invaluable.”

Hajjar believes Megan’s lecture is simply another way to educate people and help them explore sexuality, “whether or not they intend to put it into practice.”