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CALS Spring Wellness Series

Are you needing a little “spring” in your step? This year has been like no other, and we are all feeling the effects. Grab your friends and join us for the CALS Spring Wellness Series where we will explore wellness in all areas of life- giving you practical and relevant tools to address personal and community wellbeing in the areas of health, mental strength and resilience, and engagement with others. The series will culminate with a hike together at the end.

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Pick one or all to attend! To register, click here. (If you are unable to attend, if you register anyway, we’ll send you a recording afterwards.)

Each virtual workshop plans to be interactive and entertaining. More information, including speaker bios, appears below. We hope to see you there!

Any questions? Contact Lisa Racek, CALS Student Development and Engagement Coordinator, at lisaracek@vt.edu.


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Mindsetting for Success and Wellbeingpresented by Dr. Scott Fitzgibbon, The Pacific Institute on Friday, March 12, 12pm
Wellbeing area: mental health, resilience
Students enter higher education with varying beliefs about what college will look like, feel like, and be like.  Based on that imagery, each student has an appraisal of their ability to succeed.  These beliefs are based largely upon on past experiences and are accompanied by habits and attitudes that (hopefully) are aligned with the expectations and goals that they now have for college.
The challenges of the Covid-19 Pandemic have drastically altered that image and thus has required, in most cases, forced us to think differently.  It’s easy to understand how this can lead to sadness and even a feeling of helplessness, which can lead to apathy and an almost paralyzing feeling that there is nothing we can do, since it is largely outside of our control.  It can feel like a downward spiral of negativity that, if not controlled and turned, will continue to pull us down. 
How do we reverse the spiral and pull ourselves and those around us up…and continue moving forward, even when the circumstances surrounding us in present may feel pretty dire?  The secret is in our perception of what it is we believe is within our control.
Learning Outcomes:  We will discuss the necessity of shifting the Locus of Control marker to “inside me,” which fuels the drive the make the changes to the HABE’s (Habits, Attitudes, Beliefs, and Expectations) to produce the future we expect.    

View the recording here.


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“Living the Pura Vida in the Orange and Maroon Zone”  Adapting the Wisdom of the Costa Rica “Blue Zone” for Health and Wellness presented by Dr. Samantha Harden, HNFE Faculty on Friday, April 2, 12pm
Wellbeing area: whole life health 
Health, for many, is seen as a goal or a chore. This is different in the Blue Zones.   Blue Zones are five distinct areas in the world where the highest proportion of centenarians exist (i.e., those 100+years of age).  Research indicates commonalities among these geographically diverse populations to be: connectedness, daily outdoor exercise, a belief in a power greater than themselves, and a healthful diet. These commonalities represent values and behaviors across different levels of the socioecological model (intrapersonal, interpersonal, and community). In this workshop, we will explore some strategies for mindful movement and connectivity across and within our communities.

View the recording here.


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My Piece of the Puzzle” How Serving Others is Key to your own Wellbeingpresented by Kas Church, Campus Community Engagement Coordinator, VTEngage on Friday, April 23, 12pm
Wellbeing area: service to others
“Those who are not looking for happiness are the most likely to find it; the surest way to be happy is to seek happiness for others.”- Martin Luther King, Jr.
The model of “ut prosim” defines our university and gives us purpose. But those who figure out that  serving others will open up possibilities and have deep, lasting impact in their own life and wellbeing, are the lucky ones. Come hear from Campus & Community Engagement Coordinator with VT Engage, Kas Church on how serving others is good for you, too!
View the recording here.