FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 8, 2006
College Participates in 'Smokeout,' Body-Image Seminar
Nothing is harder than breaking a habit and changing the way we see ourselves. But on November 16, the College of the Canyons' Student Health and Wellness Center along with the Student Nutrition and Wellness Advocates at COC (SNAC), will host two events that will prove the veracity of the old adage "change is good." The college will participate in the nationwide Great American Smokeout and host the educational seminar "Has Your Body Image Got Your Attention?" at the COC Performing Arts Center.
The annual Great American Smokeout is a nationwide campaign for a smoke-free day. "The Surgeon General has stated that quitting smoking is the single best thing a person can do for their health," explains Thomas Chen, a Berkeley graduate and intern of the Student Health and Wellness Center Tobacco Cessation Program.
In order to promote tobacco awareness leading up to the event, health information and tobacco cessation resources will distributed Tuesday, Nov. 14 and Thursday, Nov. 16. Pledges will be taken from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. to be tobacco-free. Quit kits and helpful tips will be provided for smokers who take the pledge. Non-smokers are welcome too.
"Smoking and environmental tobacco smoke affects everyone, not just the smoker," said Chen. "Similarly, tobacco cessation requires the participation of the community, to encourage friends and family to quit as well as to personally commit to be tobacco free."
Chen hopes to offer peer group counseling sessions next semester that would help smokers develop a more personalized plan for quitting.
"While quitting is hard, the benefits are overwhelming," says Chen, "quitting smoking not only prevents premature death, but can save college students thousands of dollars each year, in cigarettes and medical costs, and gives them the chance to live healthy, active lives."
Later that same day, from 3 to 4:30 pm at the Performing Arts Center, the COC Student Health and Wellness Center along with SNAC will host the seminar, "Has your body image got your attention?"
"Negative body image has become so widespread in our culture," explains Sheri Barke, nutrition and wellness coordinator, "that male and female body preoccupation is turning our inner worlds upside down, while it profits major industries in advertising, dieting and body sculpting services."
Francie White, a registered dietitian and national speaker on the psychological impact of the dieting culture and advertising industry on body image and health practices, will present the seminar. Led through a series of slides, music and reflective questions, attendees will learn how negative body image can be converted into something positive and empowering.
The seminar is free and open to all ages. No RSVP is required, but early seating begins at 2:30 pm.
For more information about the Great American Smokeout or the body image seminar please visit the college's website at www.canyons.edu.