NCSU backs off adult-themed prizes for sex-ed event

Posted February 7, 2013
Updated February 8, 2013

— The University Union Activities Board at North Carolina State wanted to think creatively to draw attention to a safe-sex seminar for students. They planned bingo with prizes linked to their theme. 

But what UAB saw as a turn-on proved a turn-off for some, and the more risque items will stay in the box.

The Facebook invitation to "Dirty Bingo" shows a photo of condoms. "Win some 'unique' prizes while having a good time, laughing, being entertained and learning about safe practices," it reads.

The game isn't scheduled until next Tuesday, but UAB President Lauryn Alexis Collier found herself defending the plan Thursday night. Comments on Facebook called the event "disgusting," and a counter-protest is planned by students who balked at the use of student activity funds for sex toys.

Collier said bingo players could win a copy of "Fifty Shades of Grey" and sex-themed games and toys. 

Sex educators will use some of the items to demonstrate safe-sex practices; others were designated as gag gifts, Collier said. "Health Promotions will be giving away non-sexual items such as koozies, gift-cards and T-shirts," she added. 

Some balk at use of student fees for sex toys Some balk at use of student fees for sex toys

Collier, a junior, said event planners spent about $300 to purchase prizes. "I was not aware of what was purchased. When I did see it, I said a few of the items I feel like we could do without," she said.

"They wanted to do a sex education event. They wanted to mix things up. That is why they decided on 'Dirty Bingo,'" she said. "People are not used to out-of-the-box events."

Freshman Mark Gorton said the plan didn't bother him, so long as participants were old enough to legally purchase the same items. "They could just go out and get it. I do not see why there would be a problem winning it," he said.

But his classmate Danielle Stallings failed to see the value or the humor. "I don't see how it relates to sex education, getting sex toys," she said.


This story is closed for comments.

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  • Pepe Silvia Feb 11, 2013

    "...that very stigmatization (where teens used to be embarrassed to be pregnant) kept people STD-free, prevented teen pregnancy..."

    Actually, no it didn't. It happened all the time but teenage girls who got pregnant were sent away to "boarding school" to hide their pregnancies and then expected to give the babies up for adoption and act like it never happened.

  • independent_thinker Feb 8, 2013

    Duke students making racially insensitive remarks met with "get over it" from folks here.

    Adults seeing or receiving adult toys - get over it - don't go to a forum on sex if you're not willing to hear about sex.

  • ctya Feb 8, 2013

    Some of you may be surpised what your children have. I say room check tonight and see. But don't be suprised. I'm not speaking of college age either.

  • Ex-Republican Feb 8, 2013

    "Some come from very conservative areas and schools and honestly may not know about even the basics." -- Carrboro Youth

    As someone else has already posted, humanity has been reproducing for thousands of years without sex ed and now all of a sudden it's a necessity. " . . . may not know even the basics"!!! What is there to know!

  • tooshkadoo Feb 8, 2013

    "If winning requires having the right answers to not to get pregnant or an STD..........and no, abstinence is not a viable answer....leastways not for almost all normal healthy young people." -Grand Union

    "If" is the keyword. It appears that the sex toys are primarily promotional items (and inappropriate ones at that). I'm pretty sure bingo doesn't require participants to correctly answer a question before they can win; however, I'm not involved with the planning for this event, so who knows. Glad you think a barely adult-age person that's normal has sex.

  • tooshkadoo Feb 8, 2013

    "I think you're missing the point. Nobody is saying that sex toys equate to safe sex. They are, among other prizes, being used to promote attendance at an event intended to provide education about safe sex." - Ken D.

    No, I get it. After all, college student or not, people are quite motivated and interested in free stuff! I just think that for the free stuff and prizes at a public event to include sex toys is ridiculous and inappropriate. Everyone is saying "sex is natural" and "everyone already does it"... ok, that's true, but giving away sex toys is crossing the line as they are for private use and do not increase the educational value of a safe sex event. That's just my opinion though. Of course we all know that anyone against the sex toys aspect of this event is quite a close-minded, Bible obsessed individual (and in case it's not obvious, that was sarcasm).

  • Grand Union Feb 8, 2013

    "How the heck does me winning a sex toy and then using it for some kinky new sex with my boyfriend make me any safer against pregnancy?"

    If winning requires having the right answers to not to get pregnant or an STD..........and no, abstinence is not a viable answer....leastways not for almost all normal healthy young people.

  • Grand Union Feb 8, 2013

    "What would you rather have, a kid with a sex toy or a kid with AIDS?" - FromClayton I would rather have a kid with niether. I guess that makes too much sense though, doesn't it."

    You imagine that you have a choice whether or not your 18 plus year old child has sex????? boy are you going to be disappointed (or lied to convincingly), see its like Catholics and birth control....none of them are supposed to use it but almost all do.

  • moomoo Feb 8, 2013

    Why is this news?

  • kikinc Feb 8, 2013

    I think that the sex toys were just a way to pique people's interests to get them at the event in order for them to learn about safe sex. You invite people to a seminar on safe sex, no one's going. You invite people to bingo with dirty prizes, mad dash to the door.