Healthy Days event promotes wellness on campus

Rebekah Alvey

The Preston Center opened its doors Wednesday for the 16th annual Healthy Days Wellness Fair.

Booths with on and off campus organizations illustrated different ways for students to maintain balance and wellness during the event.

Student Wellness Graduate Assistant Casey Cahill said it was intended to show people that wellness isn’t just diet and exercise. She explained there are eight dimensions of wellness; emotional, environmental, financial, intellectual, occupational, physical, social and spiritual.

Cahill said for her job, she has been planning the event since January.

There was a wide range of vendors that represented the different dimensions of wellness. Groups like Wholesome, IMREC and ORAC, which are commonly associated with wellness were in attendance.

Fitness and programming graduate assistant Michael Carr said physical health is important because it increases life expectancy, mental and physical health while also decreasing stress.

To represent the physical wellness aspect, there were activities like Wii Boxing and a personal trainer coaching students through a proper deadlift.

There were several stations for Wholesome WKU, a dietitian-based group which encourages healthy eating. Each station was providing samples of healthy and affordable snack options.

Junior Sarah Greer, a sports dietetic intern, explained one of the biggest misconceptions about dieting is that it is time consuming and expensive. She said it is easier than you would expect if you commit to it and is worth the benefits of increased energy and health.

There were also groups like the Student Government Association, Hope Harbor and Kentucky Cancer Program that show a different side to wellness.

Londa Stockton, a community educator at Hope Harbor, explained student mental stress and personal trauma correlates with how students perform. She said mental health often gets overlooked.

Hope Harbor acts as a safe haven for victims of sexual assault at an off-campus location. Stockton said they wanted to let students know there was a safe place in the community while also starting off sexual assault prevention month.

There were other activities and groups that addressed stress and mental wellness, like the counseling and testing center and a booth to make stress balls.

The SGA Sustainability Committee also had a booth advertising the different projects on campus geared towards the environment.

“If we help the Earth, the Earth helps us and our wellness will follow,” freshman Ian Hamilton said. He explained how SGA is involved with many sustainability programs like GameDay Recycling Challenge and new sustainability containers at Fresh Food Company and Subway.

Local businesses and organizations were also featured at the event like Lost River Cave and Nat’s Outdoor Sports.

Freshman Reed Mattison, who was representing Nat’s, explained they were encouraging students to get outside and be active.

Mattison said the more healthy you are, the more energy you have and the better you feel.

Cahill said she hoped students would learn about the different types of wellness and discover the resources available to help become a better student.

Reporter Rebekah Alvey can be reached at 270-745-6011 and [email protected].