Campus Life

Lunching & learning

This month, I would like to highlight and recognize a group of individuals that works very hard here at the University. Susan Vanderaegen, Chris Groves, Joanne Gedrasik and Sharon Kanashiro are all caretakers from our Facilities department. They have faithfully attended most, if not all, of the Wellness Lunch and Learn sessions since 2009 (when I first started working here). Recently, they persuaded another caretaker, Ed Sandzewicz, to join them, saying, "Ed either comes along or he gets left behind!"

I have been very impressed with their dedication and interest in health and wellness issues and I wanted to highlight their reasons for attending the sessions and what they are getting out of them.

Reasons for attending

• "The Wellness Lunch and Learn sessions are interesting and informative. The opportunity to learn something new is appreciated. Sometimes the information or topic is something you know or knew at one time, but have forgotten, and the lunch and learn helps bring it into focus again."

They also added that, "It's also a nice break at the end of the work day," as the majority of our caretakers are up and working to keep our campus clean before the rest of us are even awake.

What they like

• The group indicated that it enjoys the speakers and the variety of topics and that the sessions open their eyes to new ideas.

Positive lifestyle changes

• Having attended a number of sessions, they have been able to make some positive changes in their own lives. They are also passing on their knowledge and good habits to their families. Another benefit is that because they are attending or participating at work, they can be supportive to each other when maintaining or improving healthy habits.

These individuals have demonstrated that they care about their health and well-being and are interested in doing what they can to improve or maintain a balanced lifestyle. I would like to say thanks to Ed, Sharon, Joanne, Chris and Susan – we on the Wellness Committee are glad the information is getting out to you and hope that we can continue to support your interest and quest for that healthy life that we all desire.

If you haven't been out to a Lunch and Learn session, chat for a few minutes with these regulars and you may be persuaded to attend one as well. The next Lunch and Learn is Wednesday, Apr. 13 at noon in Andy's Place (AH100). Digesting the Nutrition Label is the topic with campus dietitian Diane Britton presenting on how to decipher those mysterious food labels.

It's time to register for the 7th Annual Bee Heart Smart physical activity challenge. In 2010 we had 15 teams registered and 125 individual participants. Our goal for 2011 is to make it the biggest even to date. You don't have to be the fastest runner or walker, and you don't have to record the most steps to be a winner – participation alone may get you a prize!

The Challenge starts May 1 and runs through June 12 and you can enter as an individual or a team on the Bee Heart Smart website ( Prizes this year will be awarded for early bird registration (before Apr. 15) and for best team name.

Suzanne McIntosh is the University's wellness co-ordinator

For a look at the Legend in a flipbook format, follow this link.