Multiple departments on campus are collaborating to provide wellness programs for students, faculty and staff.
Student Health and Counseling Services, Student Life, Sodexo and Residence Life are all working together with the common goal of creating a healthier environment at UW-River Falls.
The annual Wellness Challenge started last Monday. The month-long program is a way for individuals and teams alike to improve their daily physical and mental health. About 120 people have signed up for the challenge this year, according to Health Education Coordinator Keven Syverson.
“It is a really good opportunity for students to take advantage of,” said student Megan Lynch.
Lynch decided to participate in the challenge because she wanted to find a way to work out and eat healthier.
She has teamed up with coworkers to complete the challenge and has noticed increases in her overall wellness, along with improved relationship with her coworkers. By eating more vegetables and fruit and drinking more water, Lynch has started to feel more focused and energized on a daily basis.
UWRF student Donald Carufel has also noticed the same positive changes to his lifestyle by participating in the Wellness Challenge. Like Lynch, eating healthier has improved his mood overall.
Carufel is completing the challenge individually. His favorite part of the challenge is that there is a large variety of ways to earn points, from getting eight hours of sleep a night to attending open recreation at Knowles Center.
The Wellness Challenge is a good way for some people to take their minds off of the gloomy Wisconsin winter. Syverson said it is also a particularly good way for college students to relieve stress.
All participants of the Wellness Challenge will receive the book “Eat Move Sleep” by Tom Rath.
“It could be a life changing thing for someone to read this book,” said Featured Events Coordinator Karyn Wells.
Rath will be speaking at 7:30 p..m. April 16, in the Riverview Ballroom. Rath’s mission is to show individuals how to live the longest and fullest lives possible. His book includes its own 30-day wellness challenge.
“We are really excited to have Rath on campus,” Wells said.
Students are also encouraged to attend the Health Fair on April 16 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Riverview Ballroom. Syverson said the fair is meant to educate students on all dementions of health and wellness.
There will also be free materials and prizes, along with BMI testing. BMI testing will also be provided Mondays from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. in different residence halls.
Sodexo is also unveiling its Mindful program, which is a corporate-wide initiative to improve the quality and variety of food provided to consumers.
“Mindful is more of a lifestyle than a healthy item,” said Marketing and Retail Manager Mike Vanselow. Sodexo will be featuring 50 new recipes in Riverside Commons and will be changing menu options with the seasons.
Vanselow said the changes reflect the trends of the entire food industry to become more transparent about the ingredients and source of the products.
Each Mindful menu option will have a large label that includes the Mindful logo, so healthier choices can be easMaggie Sanders/Student Voice ily identified.