NORMAN — The OU Norman campus recently received its Certified Healthy Campus and has achieved the highest of three levels of certification: Excellence.
Certified Healthy Campus is a program of the Shape Your Future Campaign coordinated by the Oklahoma Turning Point Council, formed in 1997 to help transform public health in the state by working directly with community partnerships on health improvement initiatives.
One major new initiative at OU is Healthy Sooners, a program focused on tackling the four leading health issues facing the state of Oklahoma: Reducing tobacco use, positively impacting campus alcohol use, increasing physical activity and developing new programs to increase campus nutritional habits.
The university has launched several new health programs during the past four years, including the annual Healthy Sooners 5K run, tobacco cessation assistance programs, and healthy eating and physical fitness programs for OU students, faculty and staff. The program, a project between OU Student Affairs and Human Resources, is credited with making a significant impact in the health of OU’s Norman campus community.
Some of the programs offered through Healthy Sooners include:
· A wellness incentive program called “Well onTarget,” launched this year, offering personalized tools and resources to help all members, no matter what their health and wellness level.
· A weight-loss program, open to all members of the OU community, that shows participants how to enjoy a full plate of food and still lose weight.
· Use of the university’s Huston Huffman Recreational Center and Murray Case Sells Swim Complex. In addition to its traditionally strong student membership, a renewed emphasis has been placed on attracting OU employees, who now can utilize both facilities and attend group fitness classes at a rate of $10 a month.
· Discounted fitness center membership rates at select area fitness centers for OU Blue Cross members who join the BlueCross BlueShield Fitness Program.
· Departmental Coed Fun-For-All Basketball games, open to all faculty, staff and retirees, at the Huston Huffman Recreational Center.
· Weight Watchers at Work.
Turning Point seeks input from communities to help identify community priorities and implement local solutions. For more than 14 years, Turning Point has partnered with communities across Oklahoma to work on such local innovations as community health centers, extensive walking trails, community gardens, improved school health activities and advocacy for health improvement policies.
Designation as an Oklahoma Certified Healthy Campus recognizes post-secondary public and private institutions of higher learning and career technology centers for their outstanding efforts and achievements in actively creating a safe and healthy environment for faculty, staff, students and visitors.
OU and other award recipients will be honored at an awards ceremony scheduled for Feb. 28 at the Cox Convention Center.