Eastern Michigan University celebrated national Women's Health & Fitness Day by hosting various activities and exercises for students throughout the day Wednesday at the Rec/IM and Student Center.
Ellen Collier, program coordinator of EMU’s Women’s Resource Center, said the WRC helped organize the event because they really felt it was important to talk about health and wellness as a general concept.
“When you look on the national scale, a lot of it is mostly primarily focused on physical fitness,” said Collier. “A mental health situation can have an impact on your physical fitness and what you’re eating and vice versa. So we really wanted to make sure we address this from multiple perspectives.”
Collier said there will be representatives from several different areas such as from the Office of Nutrition Services, Counseling and Psychological Services, The Wellness Center and the Rec/IM that will serve as the expert panel to answer questions from participants.
Alison Jay, registered dietitian supervisor from the Office of Nutrition Services, served as one of the experts at the holistic health panel. She said that the PowerPoint presentation they provided was to bring awareness to nutrition issues related specifically to woman.
“We talked about iron deficiency, we talked about breast cancer or cancer just in general, and then we just talked about general nutrition too,” Jay said.
Karen Schofield, registered dietitian from dining services, provided students with examples of healthy food recipes and nutritional facts while Tom Murray, executive chef for dining services prepared sample dishes for the students to taste.
“These are all recipes I would consider easy to make at home,” said Schofield.
Murray said to cut out the sodium, to add fresh ingredients and to remember to have clean and simple recipes.
“Use all your senses when it comes to food,” said Murray.
EMU freshman Sarah Bertram said yoga was the first Women’s Health & Fitness Day activity she participated in. Bertram said she wanted to participate in the earlier events but class prevented her from doing so.
“I have a really big interest in yoga. I haven’t been able to go to the free classes at the Rec/Wellness Woof Wednesdays with registered therapy dogs and anonymous HIV test counseling on Thursdays.
“Sometimes people feel more comfortable coming to the Wellness Center than the medical clinic,” Walz said.
Melissa Plaufcan, staff psychologist at Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS), also one of the panel experts, said CAPS offers individual counseling as well as group therapy. Plaufcan said CAPS does a lot of outreach on campus on mental health topics such as stress, anxiety, depression, adjusting to college and relationship concerns.
“The number one reason students report they come to CAPS is to deal with anxiety,” Plaufcan said.
Plaufcan said CAPS works to help students at any time of the day by offering after-hour services. She said if a student needs to speak to someone when the office is closed, they can call the CAPS number and speak to a master-level therapist, even on the weekends.
EMU senior Jazmin Rodgers said she thought having a panel of women from a variety of centers around campus was really cool
“I thought they were all so knowledgeable about their field,” Rodgers said. “They were very informative. They answered everyone's questions.”