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7/22/2011 - Jackson, Miss.

The Worksite Wellness CommitteeThe staff members at the Mississippi Institutions of Higher Learning and the Mississippi Commission on Volunteer Service were treated to healthy snacks, water and a wealth of information about health, nutrition, and fitness this morning during the kickoff event for the Worksite Wellness Program.

Coordinated by the volunteer Worksite Wellness Committee, the Worksite Wellness Program is designed to give employees the tools and information necessary to help them lead healthier lives. Today’s kickoff event featured health and wellness information and materials provided by the University of Mississippi, the University of Mississippi Medical Center and the UMMC School of Dentistry. UMMC also provided tote bags to hold the informational materials. Mississippi State University Extension Service personnel from Starkville and the Jackson Metro area also participated in the event, providing information and answering questions from participants.

Alcorn State University and the University of Mississippi contributed bottles of water for the event. In addition, Alcorn State University provided fresh fruits and vegetables grown on the campus in Lorman. Blue Bell Ice Cream contributed natural fruit bars and SignsFirst provided signage for the event that can be used at all Worksite Wellness activities. A representative from Weight Watchers also participated in the event.

“We appreciate the support of our universities and other contributors in making this event successful,” said Dr. Janette McCrory, Director of Nursing for the Institutions of Higher Learning and chair of the Worksite Wellness Committee. “We know that we must take care of ourselves so that we can give 110 percent to our families, our careers and our communities. We want to give all of our staff members the tools and information they need to help them lead healthy lives.”

As part of the kickoff event, employees contributed cleaning supplies to provide to the victims of the recent flooding in Mississippi.

The Worksite Wellness Committee includes staff members from the Institutions of Higher Learning and the Mississippi Commission on Volunteer Service. The committee, including Dr. Janette McCrory, Chair; Bridget Breithaupt, Co-Chair; Deborah Bridges, Stephanie Green, Holly Johnson, Clotee Lewis, Sharon Scott, Joy Smith and Sadelle Sweet, are planning a number of activities throughout the year.

A Lunch and Learn series will feature a speaker and information on a specific topic each month. In addition, the committee has created a Worksite Wellness page on the Web site, where employees can access information on health topics, activities and events. Information on a monthly topic is also posted on bulletin boards throughout the building.

The Worksite Wellness Program is a state employee wellness program that was created by Senate Bill 2646 in the 2010 Legislative Session. The bill also established standards for the program and authorized state agencies to participate in the program. The lead agency for the program is the Mississippi Department of Health, Office of Preventive Health.

Cutline for attached photo: Worksite Wellness Committee members, (front row, l-r) Bridget Breithaupt, Co-Chair; Clotee Lewis; Dr. Janette McCrory, Chair; Holly Johnson; (back row, l-r) Sadelle Sweet; Deborah Bridges; Sharon Scott; Joy Smith; and Stephanie Green; plan a number of health and wellness events and activities for staff members at the Mississippi Institutions of Higher Learning and the Mississippi Commission on Volunteer Service, including the Worksite Wellness kickoff event held today.

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The Mississippi Board of Trustees of State Institutions of Higher Learning governs the public universities in Mississippi, including Alcorn State University; Delta State University; Jackson State University; Mississippi State University including the Mississippi State University Division of Agriculture, Forestry and Veterinary Medicine; Mississippi University for Women; Mississippi Valley State University; the University of Mississippi including the University of Mississippi Medical Center; and the University of Southern Mississippi.

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