City College to be first Live Well campus

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City College to be first Live Well campus

Courtesy graphic.

Courtesy graphic.

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Courtesy graphic.

Christopher Handloser

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City College will be officially proclaimed by San Diego County as the 12th member, and first college campus, to participate in the countywide initiative entitled ‘Live Well San Diego’ (LWSD) on Nov 7.

On Nov. 14 at 2 p.m., Professor Veronica Ortega and cross-country coach Paul Greer will host County Supervisor Ron Roberts for a proclamation ceremony in Gorton Quad. Following, Greer is organizing a 2K Fun Run across campus to kick off the event for the students.

City College will partner up with Cities of Oceanside, National City, Coronado, Chula Vista and La Mesa, and others, to focus on delivering better fitness, better nutrition and better behavioral health to many county residents.

Currently, the long-term health strategy only includes Chula Vista Elementary and Encinitas Union schools, so getting City College on board is exciting for everyone involved.

“It’s very important to the county that we’re doing it and they’re very excited because they see us as potentially being a model for other college campuses,” explained Ortega.

Associated Student Government, faculty and their classes, the entire cross-country and baseball teams, the women’s softball team and many others will celebrate the proclamation day with college administration and county officials. The event will highlight Fitness Awareness Week on campus.

The plan started with a unified vision and is broken down into components, strategies and areas of influence, all intended to positively effect the LWSD indicators of life expectancy, quality of life, education, income and more. (see graphic right)

Launched in 2010, the county moved into the second component, Living Safely, in Oct. 2012. However, Ortega strongly feels City College should follow the example of the county and start fresh with Building Better Health.

“Our faculty, our administration, our staff, we all have to walk the walk,” Ortega emphasized. “It can’t just be something that we’re asking students to do.”

After the initial launch, the committee will hold monthly meetings and establish a 12-month calendar in order to organize related events every month including nutritional education, behavioral health activities and fitness activities.

Ortega also openly encourages anyone interested in wellness of any type – students, faculty and staff – to attend the monthly meetings and participate in the ongoing initiative.

Ortega’s committee includes City College Public Relations Officer Heidi Bunkowske. The two them came up with “Step Up to Live Well” as a way to brand the college’s program differently from the countywide program.

“It really came out of the fact that we have a lot of steps here on campus,” joked Ortega. “And implied in that is people do have to step up. They do have to make the effort.”

For more information, contact Veronica Ortega at vortega@sdccd.edu.

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