A West Seattle High School Hidden Health Gem

Pixie Higgins, Writer

The teen health center, located in room 127 near the historical entrance, is the hub of health at West Seattle High School, providing a range of services, including mental health help, birth control options, and general physical health check-ins. Another health-associated group at West Seattle, the Teen Health Council, helps with similar problems! 

The Teen Health Council is a group of students dedicated to improving the physical health and mental well-being of pupils at West Seattle High School. The club is made up of students of all grades and meets in room 230 on Mondays after school.  

“Provide health education, resources, and access to all youth in our school community, and promote awareness of health topics through an equity-focused lens,” says Kate Wilburn, adult supervisor of the health council, provided interviewers with a brief introduction of the club’s mission statement. As an advisor, Kate ensures the cooperation of members in the council, but the true stars are the members of the group.  

One student, Ruth Golla, a Junior at West Seattle High School gave her perspective on what it’s like to be a member of the Teen Health Council a few weeks ago. 

“Teamwork, it’s a lot of teamwork. We’ve been making posters for the past two weeks just trying to spread the word so more people can join.” Golla explained. The Teen Health Council works to incorporate teamwork as much as possible by making sure everyone gets their own voice heard and shown.  

Golla joined the club due to her personal interest in healthcare and finds the mental and physical health topics interesting. “My favorite part would probably be discussing these topics with other students and hearing what they have to say about it,” Ruth says.  

Extracurriculars support us in countless ways, especially by allowing us to give back to our communities. Golla’s goal with the Teen Health Council is “[To give] students more comfortability in order to come to the Teen Health Center and discuss their problems.” There is not only an opportunity to give back by joining the club, but opportunities to expand your knowledge to new territories. With the club doing previous webinars, public speaking is a useful skill learned through this group experience, along with many others. 

Some previous projects the Teen Health Council has covered includes things like Covid-19 resources, outside support and information for mental health during quarantine, and other health-focused topics. With the current mental health problems that a large number of students find themselves facing, the Teen Health Council has begun incorporating more projects relating to social and emotional well-being. As a club led by young people, this is a way for students to help their friends and fellow pupils learn about their own mental and physical health. It is important to have an outlet for students to be able to work to try to solve their own issues and learn about different ways to help their community.  

The Teen Health Council is West Seattle High School’s hub of student-led health and is a great opportunity for students who want to meet new people, give back to their community, and explore new skills and opportunities.