‘MSU on the Move’ celebrates health and wellness with Monday event

Contact: Allison Matthews

STARKVILLE, Miss.—An MSU on the Move Celebration Ceremony next week will help students, faculty, staff and community members kick off the semester with a healthy focus.

MSU on the Move, a university initiative funded through a grant from the Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Mississippi Foundation, is expanding and creating more opportunities for the campus to engage in healthy activities related to physical fitness, nutrition and overall wellness.

To be held prior to “The Drill” on Monday [Aug. 15], the event will take place at the Drill Field near Colvard Student Union and Lee Hall beginning at 3 p.m. Various physical activities are planned, including Zumba, Pilates/yoga, karate and dance demonstrations to encourage fitness strategies for healthy lifestyles.

A brief program at 4 p.m. will include MSU President Mark E. Keenum to welcome participants, and Starkville Mayor Parker Wiseman will speak about the community support aspect of the campus health and wellness programming. Vice President for Student Affairs Regina Hyatt, Director of Health Promotion and Wellness Joyce Yates, and Executive Director of Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Mississippi Foundation Sheila Grogan also will give brief remarks.

The first 50 MSU faculty and staff members to bring a completed application will receive their choice of health equipment being provided by a Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Mississippi Foundation grant. The equipment choices include an adaptable standing desk, under-desk treadmill or under-desk bike pedals. Remaining equipment will be distributed to faculty and staff through a raffle. Forms may be downloaded at www.msuonthemove.msstate.edu.

Immediately following the program, an adult trike race will take place at the Old Main Plaza between Colvard Student Union and Perry Cafeteria. Participants include Dean of Students Thomas Bourgeois, Associate Provost for Academic Affairs Peter Ryan, Director of University Health Services Dr. Clifton Story, and Head Women's Softball Coach Vann Stuedeman.

Hyatt said campus administrators are deeply committed to advancing health and wellness on campus. A focus on physical fitness opportunities and healthy dining options has been a campus priority for many years, she added.

“We understand the direct impact healthy lifestyles have on student success. Physical activity, getting plenty of sleep, and eating healthy foods all contribute to our students’ ability to perform well in the classroom,” Hyatt said. “We are committed to ensuring our students and faculty/staff have the information and resources available to support their success.”

MSU on the Move is benefiting from a $256,649 grant from the Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Mississippi Foundation, which is continuing its support of MSU as the university builds on a culture of healthy habits on campus, in the local community and in local schools. This increased focus on healthy living is in large part due to the Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Mississippi Foundation’s University and College Health and Wellness Model, designed to provide support to schools in establishing wellness initiatives for students, faculty and staff, as well as the community and local schools. It provides the framework for a well-rounded wellness initiative while giving schools the flexibility to tailor the programs to meet specific needs.

Grogan said, “The Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Mississippi Foundation is committed to supporting our state’s colleges and universities as they create innovative and dynamic programs to support the people of our state.

“Health and wellness is becoming a focus on our campuses, and we are proud to have a pivotal role in creating a healthy future for Mississippi,” she added.

The Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Mississippi Foundation provides targeted funding throughout Mississippi, focusing on interests related to health programs for schools, colleges and universities, and communities. Learn more at www.healthiermississippi.org.

MSU is Mississippi’s leading university, available online at www.msstate.edu.