Wellness fairs well with students

By Josh Albrecht

A variety of screenings, including foot, glucose, hearing and spinal, made the 11th annual NIU Wellness Fair an interactive event for the campus and DeKalb.

Community members had the chance to learn about their overall health and how to enhance it, as more than 100 exhibits highlighted health programs from around the area Wednesday.

Faye Campagna, a graduate student in communicative disorders, worked the hearing screening exhibit as part of her degree program and said the Wellness Fair is a good experience for those participating.

“It’s very educational and really informative,” Campagna said. “There’s a blend of students and community members but not as many students as I would like to see.”

After completing the hearing screening, participants received free sets of ear plugs.

Virtually every exhibit gave away free items to those passing by, and Abdul-Rahim, a junior fitness leadership and exercise science major, took advantage of the giveaways.

“I got tons of ink pens, dental floss and toothpaste,” Abdul-Rahim said.

He also took advantage of the opportunity to get different aspects of his health checked by professionals.

“I found out that I have good hearing and high blood pressure, but it’s all right,” Abdul-Rahim said, citing genetics as a major player in his blood pressure.

Becky Lewis, the Wellness Fair co-chair woman, said the event was just as populated as past fairs, which drew nearly 1,500 people.

“Everything is interactive, and that’s what draws people,” Lewis said.

This year, to keep up with the demand of people wanting massages, the Northern Prairie Center for Education and Healing Arts had nearly 20 chairs set up for massages and many other exhibits featured masseuses.

Nancy Apperson, the coordinator of the Employee Wellness and Assistance Program, said the fair is planned well in advance to make it a success, and this year’s success was because of Lewis and Karen Smith’s hard work, who also co-chaired the event.

“We do an evaluation at the end of every Wellness Fair and prepare for the next year,” Apperson said.

Amy Beckman, a senior sports management major, said the fair is a good tool to educate people about the different aspects of health.

“Overall health is important,” Beckman said. “People need to emphasize overall wellness in their lives, not just looking good and working out.”Andrea