There is a tremendous need for wellness programming at all university levels as well as the United States as a whole. Healthy lifestyles benefit the workplace through lower healthcare costs, lower rates of injury and absenteeism, higher productivity, and improved morale and retention. This paper describes two innovative programs in higher education, the Healthy DiplomaTM and Healthy Titans, which are designed to improve the health and well-being of both students and employees. Two universities addressed the health and wellness of students (Healthy DiplomaTM) and employees (Healthy Titans) by utilizing the strengths of their respective kinesiology department students and faculty members. The Healthy DiplomaTM program was designed to lead university students to a healthy lifestyle while enhancing their postgraduation contributions as healthy entry-level employees. The Healthy Titans program was designed to provide University of Wisconsin Oshkosh employees and their families an affordable fitness program with an onsite clinical setting for kinesiology students to gain practical experience with fitness programming. Students were provided the opportunity to gain personal health and wellness skills and competencies, and practice their future profession in an applied, yet highly-supervised setting. Practitioners were provided current research and best profession practices. These two programs at two different universities further illustrate both the practicality and advantages of faculty and student collaborations for campus-wide wellness. Programs addressing wellness at the university level have demonstrated appropriateness as well as benefits for students, employees, and community members, and suggest expansion of similar programs to other university settings.
Sheri J. Brock, Christina Beaudoin, Mark G. Urtel, Lisa L. Hicks, and Jared A. Russell
The goal of university instructional physical activity programs (IPAPs) is to provide quality instruction through best practices to encourage college students to lead healthy and physically active lifestyles. As IPAPs have continued to decline due to enrollment and budgetary concerns, the importance of quality and sustainability has become particularly paramount. Furthermore, it is imperative to the existence of IPAPs that we strive to learn and share with each other in order to independently survive, but more essentially to flourish collectively, as we are better together. In our varied experience, while some IPAPs face unique challenges, many obstacles are common, regardless of institution size and composition. This paper will offer the perspectives of four strikingly different colleges and universities in their quest to navigate challenges in delivery, maintain and support quality instruction, and advocate for IPAPs.