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OSU receives 18 Certified Healthy Awards

Wed, March 02, 2016
Pictured in photo (left to right): Jennifer Hladik, Kevin McDonnell, Scott McCollum, Rachel Shreffler, Patty Anson, Tabi Deal, Eric Conchola, Mary Talley, Rindy Larue, Kasi Obrien

Oklahoma State University continues to be America’s Healthiest Campus®. The Oklahoma State Department of Health has recognized the OSU system and its partners with 18 Certified Healthy Awards.

The Certified Healthy Oklahoma Program is a statewide certification that recognizes businesses, campuses and communities for their commitment to improving the health of Oklahomans by implementing elements, policies and programs that will encourage healthier habits and a more active lifestyle. 

The Oklahoma State Department of Health recognized OSU-Stillwater, OSU-Tulsa, OSU-Oklahoma City, OSU Institute of Technology, Connors State College-Warner, Connors State College-Muskogee and Langston University as both Certified Healthy Campuses and Businesses. 

There are three levels of certification: basic, merit and excellence. This is the fifth year OSU-STW has received the excellence certification. Mary Talley, assistant director of Employee Wellness, believes OSU’s holistic approach to wellness allows the university to continually be recognized at such a high level.

“The certification encompasses all aspects of what being a healthy campus means,” Talley said. “From being tobacco and vape free to offering healthy dining alternatives and providing nutritional information. We provide counseling and resources for mental health, drug and alcohol issues; an accredited health center with resources for sexual health information; required sexual assault prevention training and abundant fitness and wellness programs offered to employees and students.”

Three on-campus dining options, Which Wich, Country Barbeque Co. and Hard Wok, were recognized as Certified Healthy Restaurants.  OSU-OKC was also recognized as a Certified Healthy Early Childhood Program.

Recipients of the Certified Healthy Awards are recognized for promoting health and wellness where Oklahomans live, work, learn and play. Talley believes the OSU system is creating that environment throughout its campuses by encouraging all members of the Cowboy family to live a healthy lifestyle.

“The awards are an indicator of the grass-roots level of wellness initiatives happening at OSU.” Talley said. “The culture doesn’t exist just because of programs and services offered by the Department of Wellness. It takes effort from the individual employees and all departments.

When students are surrounded by examples of healthy behavior, they will adopt those behaviors, creating a culture of wellness at OSU.”

Representatives of the OSU system were honored at an awards luncheon on March 2, 2016.

For more information about the Department of Wellness, visit wellness.okstate.edu.

Story by Catherine Wilson