Leading the group of walkers Wednesday morning were, from left, Amanda Couch, fitness coordinator in Campus Recreation, who spearheaded the event; Alex Holmes and Mary Healey, both graduate assistants in Campus Recreation.
Faculty, staff and students participated in a brisk walk Wednesday at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville as part of SIUE’s annual Chancellor’s Walk.
Chancellor Julie Furst-Bowe joined about 50 people who left the SIUE Cougar statue and headed northeast to the Prairie Portal Garden at The Gardens at SIUE. The Chancellor’s Walk is held yearly in conjunction with the SIUE’s Employee Benefits and Wellness Fair.
“We value the health and well-being of our university community, and the Annual Chancellor’s Walk and the Employee Benefits and Wellness Fair are two great examples of that commitment,” Furst-Bowe said.
Participants trekked about 1.5 miles, said Amanda Couch, fitness coordinator with Campus Recreation who spearheaded the event.
“Despite it being a bit breezy out today, we had a good turnout,” Couch said. “The walk is always an opportunity to visit on a personal level with our chancellor.”
The brisk walk around campus in 50-degree temperatures lasted about 20 minutes. Also participating remotely were the SIUE campuses in Alton and East St. Louis.
“I hope the walk will encourage more people to exercise on a regular basis,” said Alex Holmes, graduate assistant in Campus Recreation. “And I hope those attending the Wellness Fair today will get some good information.”
Those participating in this year’s walk had a chance to win a free, one-year membership to the SIUE Student Fitness Center. Last year’s winner was Rita Lesemann, senior library specialist at Lovejoy Library.
“I’m back again this year,” Lesemann said. “I’ve been at SIUE for 19 years and have done the walk the last 15. I enjoy the exercise, and it’s important for fitness and to keep in shape.”
Snagging the free Student Fitness Center membership this year was Robyn Courtway, of the Human Resources Department.
Enjoying the campus sights was another good reason to take a stroll, said Paul Fuligni, director of facilities management.
“It’s a beautiful day, and we have a beautiful campus,” Fuligni said.
The walk is also good for “co-worker bonding,” said Rhonda Stone of Accounts Payable. Stone was keeping in step with friends, Jamie Fester of Accounts Payable and Gail Munneke of the Office of Research and Projects.
“It’s good to take a break from the office and get some socializing done outside,” said Bendex Stevenson, graduate assistant in Campus Recreation. “The walk is a great stress reliever.”
Afterward, many walkers took advantage of the host of services and information provided at the Annual Employee Benefits and Wellness Fair. Employees had a chance to speak with benefits staff, state vendors and local businesses. Also available were health screenings, attendance prizes and free samples.
Southern Illinois University Edwardsville provides students with a high-quality, affordable education that prepares them for successful careers and lives of purpose. Built on the foundation of a broad-based liberal education, and enhanced by hands-on research and real-world experiences, the academic preparation SIUE students receive equips them to thrive in the global marketplace and make communities better places to live. Situated on 2,660 acres of beautiful woodland atop the bluffs overlooking the Mississippi River’s rich bottomland and only a short drive from downtown St. Louis, the SIUE campus is home to a diverse student body of about 14,000.