Posted by Mary Wimberley on 2008-10-14

Ed Craig didn't need peer pressure to find his way to the employee health fair in Samford University's Pete Hanna Center Tuesday, Oct. 14.

"Having just turned 50, I decided I needed to be a better job of staying healthy," said Craig, law librarian at Samford's Cumberland School of law. "I think I do a good job, but know that I can use more information on how to do better."

He found it at the fair, where booths provided screening for glucose and cholesterol, blood pressure and bone density. Teaching stations manned by specialists offered tips ranging from how to quit smoking to how to judge proper food portion size.

"I learned about a way I can check for cancer," commented Craig as he completed the final answers on a questionnaire that put him in the drawing for some nice door prizes. He was also pleased to get insurance questions answered at the Blue Cross/Blue Shield table.

According to Samford director of human resources Fred Rogan, more than 200 faculty and staff turned out for the fair.

"Many expressed their appreciation for the fair, and some commented that they were able to resolve several health issues at one place," said Rogan.

In addition, the fair was a great learning/experiential opportunity for about 100 students in Samford's Ida V. Moffett School of Nursing, McWhorter School of Pharmacy and department of exercise science and sports medicine, Rogan noted. Human Resources' Amy Key led the coordinating efforts.

Candi Cole helped staff a booth where employees lined up to learn their body fat percentage and body mass index. "It has been an eye-opener for some people, who knew they had a lot of fat mass, but didn't realize how unhealthy it is," she said.

Cole, ESSM's wellness program director, offered helpful suggestions on how to start correcting problems. Information at her booth stressed wellness of body, mind and spirit.

To help with the latter, she offered a large bowl of dark chocolate candies, touted as mood lifters.

Samford is a leading Christian university offering undergraduate programs grounded in the liberal arts with an array of nationally recognized graduate and professional schools. Founded in 1841, Samford is the 87th-oldest institution of higher learning in the United States. Samford enrolls 5,791 students from 49 states, Puerto Rico and 16 countries in its 10 academic schools: arts, arts and sciences, business, divinity, education, health professions, law, nursing, pharmacy and public health. Samford fields 17 athletic teams that compete in the tradition-rich Southern Conference and ranks 6th nationally for its Graduation Success Rate among all NCAA Division I schools.