High Rate of Sexually Transmitted Infections

High Rate of Sexually Transmitted Infections

High Rate of Sexually Transmitted Infections

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High Rate of Sexually Transmitted Infections

Background Of the Problem

About half of sexually active people under the age of 25 get a sexually transmitted disease at some point. This is a major issue within the United States with a lot of college students suffering from sexually transmitted diseases and being unable to speak out in fear on intimidation. Most of the youths below the age of 25 are college students and some college students are even adolescents. This age is considered one of the most active periods of a person’s life and because of this a lot of students get into relationships or engage inn casual sex. This is the major way through which STIs are passed from one person to another.

Sexually transmitted diseases have existed for a long time in American colleges and universities and continue to be a big threat. Therefore, it is an important part of campus life that it be taken seriously and more people given information of what it is to be suffering from STIs and what they can do to make sure that they do not succumb to the negative effects of these diseases. One of the major researches in this area was conducted by Shannon, & Klausner, (2018), they explain how adolescents in the United States is a forgotten population and these people contribute to a very large population of the country. Without their care the country seemingly will go into failure as sexually transmitted diseases have some adverse effects like the failure to get pregnant among other factors. This shows that care and concern should be given and directed towards the youth who have these diseases and are not taken care in the right manner.

Therefore, with this problem spread throughout American colleges and universities it is of importance that the necessary actions are taken and that the problem is dealt with as it has been a big challenge to the health of a lot of American students and it continues to be a threat to many as the diseases have different types of effects which even some may be fatal.

Statement Of the Problem

This paper focuses on the problem of increased rate of sexually transmitted diseases in colleges and universities within the United States of America as it is a challenge to a lot of people and especially the university staff, management and worst of all the students. The problem has been in existence for more than 30 years now and it continues to grow especially with the increased rate of sexual activity and the increased rate of open relationships. Therefore, the problems of sexually transmitted infections continue to grow even though there have been different measurers to counteract it. These measures have worked in some institutions while in others they have not worked and it is an area of concern that the students be taken care of firstly, from getting infected with these diseases and secondly those affected being provided with cure or mitigation measures to reduce the effects or their suffering (Shegog et al, 2014). This problem affects the universities management, health clinics, educational boards of different districts and counties and even nationally there has been a major concern towards this issue. Therefore, it is a well-known problem and solutions on the way being worked on by different people involved.

Objectives Of the Study

The study aims to look into the rate at which infection takes pace and number of people affected as well as the number of people who are not affected and compare the data. The major objectives of this study look at the following issues. The study aims to:

Investigate the rate of infection of sexually transmitted infections among long island university students

Examine the effects of sexually transmitted infections on the performance of students in class

Investigate the effects of STIs on student social relationships

Examine the measures which have been taken by university and other individuals in trying to mitigate the problem

Research Questions

The research seeks to answer the following research questions

What is the rate of STIs infection within the campus?

What are the effects of sexually transmitted infections on students, parents, teaching staff and non-teaching staff?

How do STIs affect the performance of students?

How do STIs affect a person’s social relationships?

What are the measures taken by the university or another body towards mitigating the issue of sexually transmitted infections within the campus?


The major hypothesis for this research includes: the rate of STIs infection in the campus was very high for the last 5 years up to 2019. However, it has reduced significantly owing to the measures taken by the university. The effects of sexually transmitted infections between students and parents are not pleasant as for most of the parents are not free with their kids. Therefore, they tend to be unable to talk about such and the student lives hiding that they have a disease which needs to be treated from their parents. The students feel ashamed and they do not engage in class effectively thus having problems with their lecturers and students do not relate well with non-teaching staff. Students with sexually transmitted infections also perform poorly in school and their social relationships are not good. The university has taken measures to combat the issue but they are not good enough measures.

Significance Of the Study

This study is very important as it will look into the issues which present themselves within the campus in relation to sexually transmitted infections and therefore because of this there will be new ways to deal with the issue. The study will also seek to get the attention of the administration in making sure that better methods of dealing with the problem are put into place based on the recommendation of the paper. It will also create awareness among students on what they are supposed to do when they get infected with a sexually transmitted infection and how to prevent such from happening.

Literature Review

There are many people who have done research in this area before and a lot of them seem to focus on the youth and especially college students as well as adolescents because at this age a lot of youths are active in sex and this makes them prone to getting any of the STIs.

According to research conducted by Shannon, & Klausner in 2018 there are usually around 20 million new infections of sexually transmitted infections each year in the United States. However, of this half is usually between adolescents between 15-2 years of age. This is a worrying trend as the youths within this bracket account for most of the infections and it becomes very difficult to manage since most of them are usually not willing to share their stories and issues openly to be assisted. This study looks into the issue of the very many infections taking place among adolescents and discusses how these infections can be dealt with so that a healthy nation can be achieved (LeBlanc et al, 2014). The states that in US, the youth make a quarter of the population and with these statistics it becomes very difficult to foresee a future of healthy nation if 50% of the total infections of sexually transmitted infection happen among the youths.

According to the study 1 out of every 4 females has a sexually transmitted infection. The most common type of sexually transmitted infection is Chlamydia. Based on the study, youths are likely to engage in high-risk behaviors because they are mostly still developing and their prefrontal cortex which is an important element in decision making is not yet fully developed. Therefore, this is one of the main reasons as to why the issues of sexually transmitted diseases are high among them adolescents since their decision making is impaired and they mostly get into relationships with their multiple sex partners or they are not in relationship and just engage in sex casually while at the same time not wearing condoms throughout (Eastman et al, 2020). Some of the STIs which can cause very serious effects among people include tertiary syphilis which can cause nervous and cardiovascular system damage if left for a long time without being treated. When a parent who has syphilis gives birth to a child, the child can die or have complication during the pregnancy time, time of birth and even during the childhood of the child. Gonorrhea and trichomoniasis on the other hand can cause infertility and other unwanted effects during pregnancy and child birth.

Due to the low data on STIs in adolescents, the researchers of this paper (Shannon, & Klausner) decided to research on the issue and they came up with substantive data. According to the research the rate at which sexually transmitted diseases were spread shown that men who have sex with other men had the highest risk of contracting sexually transmitted infection. There are many other variables but the most important one is that sexually transmitted diseases were rising at the time of the study and they continue to rise each and every day. One of the ways of mitigation discussed in the research is through STI screening which is recommended to be done at least once per year and when a person is found with an STI they are highly encouraged to begin treatments immediately. Screening is one of the wats of management of STIs and the other ways include using condoms and other protective measures when engaging in sex. Even abstaining completely for those who are able is a suggested way of managing STIs. Therefore, the research was extensive and it covered a lot of information which had been neglected for a long period of time and that is why it refers to the adolescents between 15-24 as the forgotten population.

According to Eva Newland of iowastatedaily.com, STIs are still spreading in colleges and this is the places with the highest level of infections. She quotes the CDC and states that it is now not just the problem of healthcare but of everyone to encourage the youth to stay safe. According to her research between 2015 and 2019 there was an approximated increase in the rate of infections for about 30% increase. This kind of increase compared to the other times is a very big increase and if nothing is not done about the issue, it might likely get out of hand. According to the CDC, twenty years ago gonorrhea rates were extremely low and syphilis was almost unheard of (Barth et al, 2002). However recently there has been a very high rise and this happens mainly in campuses. There are many groups affected and in fact gay and bisexual men made up to 50% of all primary and secondary syphilis. This research elaborates the efforts to deal with the issue but still it is a challenge for a lot of people. Therefore, the government needs to come in and assist in dealing and fighting the sexually transmitted diseases which do not seem to end.

In Columbia university, Alice is the university specialist in sexually transmitted infections and she answers students’ questions based on what they want to know. One student asked her what is the average number of STIs in campuses and the most common ones (Go Ask Alice! n.d.). She replied with a written essay about sexually transmitted infections where she outlines the number of the many people infected but they do not know that they are infected because apparently for 80% of those infected there are no signs or symptoms. Therefore, she encourages people to get to be tested and to know their health status early enough.

Research Methodology

This research used qualitative research to collect data from the students within campus. Qualitative analysis was used because it is easy for students to explain themselves easily without struggling. The study location was within the campus and mainly among the students I know or whom we study together. I used purposive sampling in selecting the right people to engage in the research since purposive sampling allows a researcher to select and request individuals to engage in research based on their willingness and ability to provide the needed data and information (Shah et al, 2007). The main research instruments used were questionnaires and interview guides to interview some students. Data collection procedures used were mainly interviews and willing in of questionnaires. Data analysis was carried out mainly on qualitative and essay basis.

Ethical Issues

Even though is used purposive sampling each and every individual engaged in the research had to give their consent as well as sign an agreement that their information was only to be used for academic purposes and was not to be revealed to anyone without their written consent. This is a very important part since the issues the paper was investigating was a very serious and important issue and if any information leaked it could lead to the student experiencing difficult time.

Data Analysis

The number of people who were involved in the study were 20 students and they were all willing to be engaged in the study. From the interviews it was clear that the students understood what it meant to have an STI. However, at the same time others did not know and they confused other diseases with STIs out of the twenty students, 8 students were interviewed and 12 of the twenty filled in questionnaires.

The data got indicated the following summaries. 80% of the students had information about STIs and how to prevent them however only 45% of the students managed to use this information effectively and protect themselves against STIs. Most of the students claimed that they found themselves in places where they could have unprotected sex because they wanted to the person to trust them and again, they did not want to show the other person that they feared or felt that they were not good enough. 60% of the students got screening each year and every time they felt like they had an STI. This was a good way to go however it was not the best since a larger percentage should be concerned about themselves and go for screening regularly.

Conclusion And Recommendations

With the rising numbers of individuals with sexually transmitted infections in the campus therefore more people should avail themselves for screening. The university administration should also include the sexually transmitted diseases as a short free course for every person to be aware of what is sexually transmitted diseases, how to realize one has one of them and how to prevent them from being infected in the first place. Other ways are by encouraging individuals to be more open to communication and seek health care support and assistance when they feel they are not okay.


Barth, K. R., Cook, R. L., Downs, J. S., Switzer, G. E., & Fischhoff, B. (2002). Social stigma and negative consequences: factors that influence college students’ decisions to seek testing for sexually transmitted infections. Journal of American College Health, 50(4), 153-159.

College students and STIs | Go Ask Alice! (n.d.). Goaskalice.columbia.edu. Retrieved November 22, 2021, from https://goaskalice.columbia.edu/answered-questions/college-students-and-stis

Eastman-Mueller, H., Fu, T. C., Dodge, B. M., & Herbenick, D. (2020). The relationship between college students’ campus sexual health resource utilization and self-reported STI testing: Findings from an undergraduate probability survey. Journal of American College Health, 1-9.

LeBlanc, T. T., Sutton, M. Y., Thomas, P., & Duffus, W. A. (2014). HIV and STI risk for young blacks in high prevalence areas: implications for health equity in communities hosting historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs). Journal of health disparities research and practice, 7(1).

Shah, A. P., Smolensky, M. H., Burau, K. D., Cech, I. M., & Lai, D. (2007). Recent change in the annual pattern of sexually transmitted diseases in the United States. Chronobiology international, 24(5), 947-960.

Shannon, C. L., & Klausner, J. D. (2018). The growing epidemic of sexually transmitted infections in adolescents: a neglected population. Current opinion in pediatrics, 30(1), 137.

Shegog, M. L., Lindley, L., Thompson-Robinson, M., Simmons, D., & Richter, D. (2010). HIV/STI risk factors among African-American students attending predominantly white universities. Journal of Health Disparities Research and Practice, 4(1), 8.