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Wellness Committee partners with Weight Watchers

By , Reporter  |  Monday, June 30, 2014 10:19 PM

The St. Thomas Wellness Committee, which strives to sustain long-term health promotion in the workplace, began a partnership with Weight Watchers earlier this month to launch a program called Weight Watchers at Work in an effort to improve overall health for faculty and staff members in the St. Thomas community.

Weight Watchers at Work was brought to action after St. Thomas faculty and staff members suggested it to aid employees to stay healthy and engaged in wellness. The program provides a convenient way for faculty and staff members on both campuses to lead balanced lives, incorporating work with health.

Human Resources Coordinator Alaina Ericksen touched on the importance of a healthy workplace.

“The goal of this program is to give employees the tools and support to achieve and maintain a healthy weight, so we ultimately have a healthier campus,” Ericksen said.

T's offers a variety of yogurt options. Weight Watchers at Work provides a convenient way for St. Thomas faculty and staff members on both campuses to lead balanced lives, incorporating work with health. (Travis Swan/TommieMedia)

T’s offers a variety of yogurt options. Weight Watchers at Work provides a convenient way for St. Thomas faculty and staff members on both campuses to lead balanced lives, incorporating work with health. (Travis Swan/TommieMedia)

The program includes weekly meetings to discuss current weight, personal goals and specific guidelines for the week ahead from a trainer with a background in Weight Watchers. Members also have unlimited access to an online server specially designed to track weight loss statistics over the duration of the program.

Theology professor Robert Koerpel said he thinks the program will be beneficial.

“I know several staff members who are signed up,” Koerpel said. “Faculty and staff members tend to live sedentary lives, so I think the program will be very successful here on campus.”

The 12-week series costs $156 per person and is set to begin July 8. Weight Watchers at Work was offered in 2005 and 2010 as well.

Weight Watchers at Work is gaining popularity at other colleges and universities both locally and nationally. The University of Minnesota is in the midst of its seven-month program that began in February. Other universities, such as the University of Michigan, Princeton University and Kent State University, have also implemented the Weight Watchers at Work program.

For more information about Weight Watchers at Work, contact hrwellness@stthomas.edu.

Travis Swan can be reached at swan9954@stthomas.edu.

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