Friday, March 23, 2012

The Zombie Apocalypse

I am intrigued by the plans made for next Wednesday, March 28, the daylong celebration of this year’s Civic Engagement Theme - “Public Health: Promoting Wellness for Self and Community.”

Maybe it’s because I have a personal interest in health/wellness, but it’s been exciting to see this year’s theme develop with Team Andy, the dietetic internship program, and guest speakers such as Deo Niyizonkiza, Martin Chaffee, and Dr. Shelly Weaverdyck ’77. What a great year.

This theme seems to have caught students’ interest as well as there are more than 40 presentations representing 13 academic majors scheduled throughout Civic Engagement Day. Normal class sessions are suspended for the day with students expected to participate in the day’s activities. Like a conference, there are multiple sessions from which to choose from during each hour. Check out the scheduled presentations.

Your day could begin with ’88 grad Darryl Nester’s presentation of “The Zombie Apocalypse and Other Epidemics” (the spread of infectious disease.) Wouldn’t mind attending that one for the title alone!

Other topics include the effect of overuse/misuse of antibiotics in livestock, health care in the U.S., art therapy, stress, diet, video showing of “Supersize Me” which explores the effect of eating fast food three meals a day for a month, and “America the Beautiful” which explores our obsession with “physical perfection,” and more. Presentations will be made by individual students, student panels, faculty and guest speakers.

The day will conclude with a keynote address by three-time Nobel Peace Prize nominee Ambassador Tony Hall. The former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Agencies for Food and Agriculture will address the pressing issues encountered by anti-hunger activists.

This is the fifth annual Civic Engagement Theme/Day. Five years ago faculty members followed the lead set by Student Senate’s Go Green initiative and explored the theme “Environmental Stewardship: Living in the Natural World” in 2007-08.

Recycling receptacles across campus and paper recycling boxes near Marbeck Desk and in Centennial Hall are visible remainders of this focused study. Other “green” initiatives continue - such as the steps being taken to ensure that the new Health and Fitness Education Center is LEED certified silver or better.

It will be interesting to see in five years how this year-long focus on public health and wellness shapes the Bluffton campus. (No pun intended.)

No comments:

Post a Comment