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Connections faculty and staff newsletter
 December 2012

Getting Fit

Getting Fit

Faculty and staff shed pounds across the nation.

Each year, the Mayor’s Council on Physical Fitness and Health asks for nominations from Boone County citizens who have made significant health or fitness changes in their lives or the lives of others. Columbia College has had numerous recipients during the last few years, including our Wellness Committee for sponsoring the Biggest Loser program.

The 2012 awards ceremony was held Nov. 1 at the City Building, and the following Columbia College staff members were recognized:
Susan Davis, Senior Director of Alumni Relations, lost more than 40 pounds and increased her fitness by following a regular exercise program. She’s also given up soda and tracks her calories with the “My Fitness Pal” app.
Susan Polacek, Coordinator for Registration and Financial Services, has lost 90 pounds this year by exercising and making better meal choices.
Stacy Ford, Student Services Manager for Evaluations, lost weight starting with the Columbia College Biggest Loser challenge.
Robin Elkthunder, Assistant Director for Financial Aid, lost weight and started incorporating Jazzercise and home exercise videos into her fitness routine.

“It’s just great to see so many CC members dedicated to health & fitness and improving their lives and the lives of their fellow staff members,” says Associate Director of Admissions Stephanie Johnson, who serves on the Mayor’s Council. “What impressive stories, commitment and dedication they represent!”

Farther south, Gina Smith, Academic Advisor at Columbia College-Fort Worth, has lost almost 100 pounds this past year and a half. “Gina has reached her goal weight and has been an example for all the employees and students at the Fort Worth Campus,” says Associate Director Brenda Cole. Smith eats right and participates in a variety of fun runs and Zumbathons to raise money for breast cancer. Most recently, Smith completed a mud run sponsored by the National MudRunner’s Association.

Faculty and staff on main campus can participate in the 2013 Biggest Loser contest from January 23 to April 3. The $10 entry fee includes a Biggest Loser T-shirt, weekly activities and team and individual prizes (teams are 4 to 7 people). Email Bryan Curtis at to sign up.

Faculty and staff can also attend DH Parson’s yoga classes on main campus, which are Tuesday and Thursday mornings from 8:30 to 9:30 and Tuesday evenings from 5:30 to 6:30 in Jane Froman Studio (sometimes Dorsey Gym or Launer Auditorium). Participants should bring their own mats and are encouraged to pay $5 for the class fee. Parsons has been teaching pure, health-focused yoga for 50 years.

Lastly, don’t forget about the Gene & Fran Koepke Fitness Center. With more than 3,000 square feet of cardio and weight machines, there’s something for everyone (although you must have a Columbia College ID to enter).