Student Research Projects

Freshmen Students and HIV/AIDS Testing on the Virginia Wesleyan College Campus

Student Kelly Fauth
Faculty Mentor(s)
Department Sociology
Course Independent Research


This study gathered the second wave of data in a ten year longitudinal survey on Virginia Wesleyan College first semester freshmen student’s knowledge of HIV/AIDS, their level of personal concern regarding HIV, and practices regarding HIV testing. Overall, this research found that students are somewhat concerned about being personally affected by HIV. Despite not knowing all of the risk factors, most students do not think they have engaged in any risky behaviors. Only 15% have been tested for HIV. Using this information, professional AIDS educators from the Tidewater AIDS Community Taskforce crafted an end of the semester program for students including a panel presentation and free HIV testing. Study results allowed the panelists to customize the presentation, focusing on what students know, did not know, and wanted to know about HIV/AIDS.