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Hiram College Joins Nationwide Healthy Campus 2020 Initiative

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Hiram -  Colleges across the country are making an extra push to promote healthy choices through the American College Health Association’s Healthy Campus 2020 initiative.

Hiram College’s Health Center is joining this effort through a yearlong “Healthy Hiram” campaign. The nationwide push stems from the American College Health Association Healthy Campus 2020 initiative and is based on the idea of 3FOUR50 – that there are three lifestyle choices people make (food and alcohol intake, activity level and tobacco use), that lead to four diseases (type II diabetes, COPD/emphysema, heart disease and cancer), thatcause 50 percent of preventable deaths.

Starting this month, the Julia Church Health Center will partner with staff from University Hospital Geauga Medical Center’s community outreach program to hold monthly events focused on healthy lifestyle changes throughout campus.

“We want to educate the students of Hiram College to make better lifestyle choices thatwill affect them not only physically, but mentally and emotionally as well,” said Marjorie Billock, registered nurse at the Health Center. “We hope that through our educational and informational outreach efforts the students will be better equipped to make healthy choices that will impact their overall health not only today, but well into the future.”

The first event, themed “Total Fitness,” will take place Oct. 22 from 7-9 p.m. Students will have the opportunity to partake in a Wii Fit contest and be screened for various fitness-related issues, including concussions, cholesterol, blood/glucose levels, hearing and more.

In monthsfollowing, the Health Center will hold events with the following themes:

•  Rate Your Plate (November)

•  Life Balance (December)

•  Snot (January)

•  Dermatology (February)

•  Sleepless in Hiram (March)

•  Backed Up Running or Rumbling (April)

All events are open to the public.

The HumanResources office is also promoting healthy choices among Hiram’s faculty and staff, in conjunction with the Healthy Hiram campaign. The office will holdseveral contests over the course of the year to promote healthy choices, including a walking contest, encouraging faculty and staff to walk 10,000 steps a day, and a holiday weight maintenance challenge.

The Health Center staff hopes to see a real shift in mindset and choices as a result of the initiative. This month, Hiram College will participate in the American College Health Association’s biennial survey. By the next time the survey is administered, they hope to see a difference as a result of the Healthy Hiram initiative.