From News Release, April 28, 2016:    Andrews University (AU) registered its wellness program with the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) Exercise is Medicine campus initiative and has been recognized with a Gold Level Award. ACSM is the top professional group in the world focusing on exercise and fitness. The Exercise is Medicine initiative is aimed at encouraging colleges and universities to promote physical activity among students, faculty and staff.

The initiative includes making movement a part of the daily campus culture, assessing physical activity at every student health visit with campus health care providers, giving students the tools necessary to strengthen healthy physical activity habits that can last a lifetime and connecting campus health care providers with fitness specialists to provide a referral system for exercise prescriptions. All of these are features of an institution which sees health as an important goal for learning as well as physical needs.

AU is the first private university to achieve the Gold Level status and only the seventh university in the United States to achieve this award. The other six are Auburn University (Alabama), California State University Long Beach, Michigan State University, Slippery Rock University (Pennsylvania), University of Colorado at Colorado Springs and Western Kentucky University. “It is an incredible honor for Andrews University to have been identified as a Gold Level Campus,” said Dominique Wakefield, director of health and wellness for AU.

The health and wellness program at AU approaches its work from a holistic perspective and focuses on physical activity as a key element in promoting wellness. “Exercise is truly medicine, and we look forward to continue promoting this medium on this campus, and the local and global community, to strive for a higher quality of life,” stated Wakefield. “This will bring greater happiness and well being.”

On June 1, 2016, ACSM will recognize all recipients of the award at a meeting in Boston. AU will be listed on their web site alongside the other Gold Level institutions. AU is also a registered member of the American College Health Association and an educational partner with the American Council on Exercise. Health is a fundamental value of the Adventist faith and is well-represented in the activities of the denomination’s leading university.

Featured image credit: Andrews University.