Health & Wellness – Albright College

Health & Wellness

Looking for our health and wellness facilities?
Gable Health Center
Counseling Center
Schumo Center for Fitness and Well-Being

President’s Advisory Council on Wellness

Mission Statement: To educate, inspire and support all members of the Albright community towards a healthy lifestyle and an improved quality of life.

Wellness Eats Program

Working in collaboration, the Albright Wellness Committee and Dining Services is excited to offer faculty and staff a $6 meal with participation in the new Wellness Eats program.
Find out more by following this link!

Article: Toward a Culture of Self-Care

If greater numbers of institutions implement such programs, they will be better able to promote student success, to produce higher levels of research and to serve as exemplary educational models, write Shari Tarver Behring, Carolyn Jeffries and Michael Spagna. Read the article from Inside Higher Ed

Wellness Works Tip of the Week

It’s Lifestyle Medicine Week!

Lifestyle Facts

Learn more about how you can lead a healthier lifestyle.


Alison Burke
Wellness Council Chair/Co-founder
Director of the Schumo Center for Fitness & Well-Being
Coordinator of Club, Intramural, & Recreational Sports

I remember the excitement in the room as I sat across for Samantha Wesner and she shared her desires to start a Wellness Committee on campus. You see, both Sam and I share the same passion for helping those around us to be well and engage in healthy lifestyles. What we didn’t know, was that this committee, now The President’s Advisory Council on Wellness, would be one of the most meaningful experiences I would have on campus. Over the past 10 years, I have been lucky enough to work with many incredibly compassionate and vibrant committee members and help so many faculty, administrators, staff, and students implement wellness strategies to improve their health and well-being.
Wendy Bartkus, MS
Academic Program Chair and Addictions Studies Coordinator
Organizational Behavior/Applied Psychology
Albright College School of Professional Studies

I joined the Wellness Council because I believe that one’s health is one of the most valuable parts of life and I want to encourage those in my work community to make healthy lifestyle choices. As an educator with a background in psychotherapy, I know the importance of promoting encouragement, motivation, and ways to increase healthy lifestyles and the overall impact these choices can have. The mission of the Wellness Council aligns with my wellness beliefs and values. I am proud to work with members of the council to bring information, activities, and events that address all areas of the Wellness Wheel to the college community. 
Charlie Columbo
Instructional Services & Reference Librarian
Wellness Member since 2020

There are three reasons why I wanted to become a member of the President’s Advisory Council on Wellness:

  1. I am committed to the Mission Statement of the Council:
    “To educate, inspire and support all members of the Albright community
    towards a healthy lifestyle and an improved quality of life”
    I value the importance of a healthy lifestyle.
  2. I am eager to work with the other members of the Council to fulfill this mission statement.
    I believe as a team we can develop innovative ideas, ambitious programs, and attractive events to accomplish this mission.
  3. Finally, I am excited to help the Albright community lead healthy lifestyles. A healthy lifestyle can make a huge difference for each one of us.

Don’t you want to have a healthy productive life?

Mike Gross
Director of Public Safety
Wellness Council Member since 2013

I believe it’s an important initiative with members that care about the mental and physical well-being of faculty, staff and students at Albright. The group is dedicated to the task and works for best outcomes in support of our campus. It’s a group I’m proud to be a part of and work with.
Bridget A. Hearon
Assistant Professor of Psychology
Wellness Council Member since 2016

As a clinical health psychologist, understanding factors that influence mental and physical health are a major focus of my research and teaching, but I’m also committed to making sure research findings don’t just stay in the lab or classroom. I want to help ensure that the general public has easy access to this knowledge and opportunities to realize the direct benefits. The Wellness Council has been a perfect opportunity to collaborate with colleagues across campus and contribute to this mission!
Kim Justeson
Director of Experiential Learning
Wellness Council Member since 2015

I joined the Wellness Committee several years ago because I saw the good work the committee was doing to promote all aspects of wellness on our campus, and I wanted to be a part of it. A workplace that values its employees’ health and well-being is very important to me, and I’m so happy to be involved in furthering the mission of the President’s Advisory Council on Wellness.
Ian Rhile
Professor, Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry
Chair of the faculty
Wellness Council Member since 2013

I grew up in Exton, PA and went to high school in West Chester, PA. I have my undergraduate degree in chemistry from Ursinus College and an M.S. and Ph.D. in chemistry from Cornell University. I lived in Seattle, WA before moving to Reading, PA. I think that wellness is a great fit for a liberal arts education, and that healthier students are more successful students.
Kera Wierzbicki
Environmental Health and Safety Officer
Wellness Council Member since 2020

I believe it’s an important initiative with members that care about the mental and physical well-being of faculty, staff and students at Albright. The group is dedicated to the task and works for best outcomes in support of our campus. It’s a group I’m proud to be a part of and work with! I joined the Wellness Council in March 2020. To be a part of such a great group is a real treat. Many people just look at wellness for the body but Wellness also includes the mind, the environment, and the spirit. The other members have such fantastic ideas and are very enthusiastic about working to promote our goals and objectives. I’m always learning something new and am glad to be part of this wonderful team.

Statement of Purpose

The President’s Advisory Council on Wellness (PACW), formerly the Wellness Committee, is a group of Albright College employees whose purpose is to educate, inspire and support all members of the College community toward a healthy lifestyle and an improved quality of life. The Council is a proactive team that suggests and (where appropriate) implements solutions addressing health, wellness, and morale concerns. Its meetings serve as a forum for the formulation and discussion of health and wellness policies, along with ongoing monitoring of morale within the Albright community.


The foundation for wellness at Albright College is based upon the Wellness Wheel. Seven areas of wellness are recognized and defined below:

Spiritual Wellness, the ability to recognize our search for meaning and purpose in human existence.

Emotional Wellness, having the ability to acknowledge and accept a wide range of feelings in oneself as well as in others. It is being able to freely express and manage one’s own feelings to develop positive self-esteem in order to arrive at personal decisions based upon the integration of one’s attitudes and behaviors.

Intellectual Wellness, the ability to recognize your creativity, as a way to stimulate your mind.

Physical Wellness, the ability to recognize the body’s need for physical activity, along with understanding diet and nutrition.

Social Wellness, the ability to relate to and connect with other people in our world. Our ability to establish and maintain positive relationships with family, friends and co-workers contributes to our Social Wellness.

Environmental Wellness, the ability to coexist in the environment in a positive and sustaining way for the environment in which you live.

Financial Wellness, the ability to find the intricate balance of the mental, spiritual and physical aspects of money.


Mission Statement: To educate, inspire and support all members of the Albright community towards a healthy lifestyle and an improved quality of life.

Vision Statement: The President’s Advisory Council on Wellness is a group of volunteers from the Albright College Community committed to serving students, staff and faculty members in promoting all aspects of wellness, which in turn enables us, individually to lead healthier and more productive lives. This, in turn, lends Albright College the benefit of having happy and engaged community members.

  1. The Council shall act in an advisory capacity to the President and Cabinet and recommend to them health and wellness policies for adoption.
  2. The Council shall identify health and wellness concerns among the community and suggest appropriate solutions to eliminate or minimize them.
  3. The Council shall conduct periodic surveys of the faculty and staff to gauge morale and identify wellness-related concerns.
  4. The Council shall solicit and encourage feedback from students, faculty and staff regarding wellness-related issues, ideas, and solutions.
  5. The Council shall communicate wellness policies, training programs, and other health- and wellness-related matters to employees and faculty.
  6. The Council, working closely with our health insurance provider, will ensure that the community is aware of and able to access all available health insurance benefits.


  1. The size of the Council shall be determined by its workload and assigned duties. Two co-chairs will be responsible for the oversight of the Council.
  2. The Council shall include as permanent members, representatives of Human Resources, the Gable Health Center, and the Schumo Center, respectively.
  3. The Council shall include at least one student member.
  4. Council membership shall reasonably represent all divisions.
  5. Members shall serve 3-year staggered terms and be eligible for re-election at the completion of their terms.
  6. Nominations for membership may be made by any member of the College community, including self-nominations.
  7. All interested parties will be interviewed regarding their interest in wellness as well as their interest in and commitment to serving on the President’s Advisory Council on Wellness.
  8. Utilizing information obtained through the interview process, the council members will vote on replacement members. Replacement members receiving the highest number of votes will be offered a position on the Council.
  9. The Council shall meet monthly at a mutually accepted day/time.

Council Members

Alison Burke Schumo Center for Fitness and Wellbeing, Committee Chair
Mike Gross Public Safety
Bridget Hearon Faculty Member, Psychology Department
Wendy Bartkus Faculty Member, Psychology Department
Ian Rhile Faculty Member, Chemistry Department
Kim Justeson ELCDC
Kera Wierzbicki Environmental Health & Safety
Karen Ashcroft Gable Health Center
Charles Colombo Library

Emotional Wellness is having the ability to acknowledge and accept a wide range of feelings in oneself as well as in others. It is being able to freely express and manage one’s own feelings to develop positive self-esteem in order to arrive at personal decisions based upon the integration of one’s attitudes and behaviors. (Wayne State University)

Take An Emotional Wellness Quiz

Tips to Increase Emotional Wellness (from

Emotional wellness is striving to meet emotional needs constructively. It is maintaining good mental health, a positive attitude, high self-esteem, and a strong self-image. It is the ability to respond resiliently to emotional states and the flow of life every day. It is dealing with a variety of situations realistically and learning more about yourself and how things you do affect your feelings. It is taking responsibility for your own behavior and responding to challenges as opportunities.

  • Practice optimism.
  • Spend time with friends and family discussing important personal concerns and being supportive of each other.
  • Participate in self-esteem workshops or support groups.
  • Read a self-help book that is of interest to you.
  • Learn time management skills and other stress management techniques.
  • Attend a wellness forum.
  • Smile at least 20 times each day

Emotional Wellness Assessment

The emotional dimension of wellness involves recognizing, accepting and taking responsibility for your feelings. Read each statement carefully and respond honestly by using the following scoring (Source ):

Almost always = 2 points            Sometimes/occasionally = 1 point           Very seldom = 0 points

_____  1.  I am able to develop and maintain close relationships.
_____  2.  I accept the responsibility for my actions.
_____  3.  I see challenges and change as opportunities for growth.
_____  4.  I feel I have considerable control over my life.
_____  5.  I am able to laugh at life and myself.
_____  6.  I feel good about myself.
_____  7.  I am able to appropriately cope with stress and tension and make time for leisure pursuits.
_____  8.  I am able to recognize my personal shortcomings and learn from my mistakes.
_____  9.  I am able to recognize and express my feelings.
_____ 10. I enjoy life.

_____ Total for Emotional Wellness Dimension

Score: 15 to 20 Points –  Excellent strength in this dimension.

Score:  9 to 14 Points – There is room for improvement.  Look again at the items in which you scored 1 or 0.  What changes can you make to improve your score?

Score:  0 to 8 Points – This dimension needs a lot of work.  Look again at  this dimension and challenge yourself to begin making small steps toward growth here.  Remember:  The goal is balanced wellness.

Walking to Wellness Sample

Wellness Tools and Resources

Helpful Links

Inspirational Videos

What is Albright Excellence?Albright Excellence, was created following feedback from across campus which suggested that the former Service Excellence program, active from 2005 -2014, be restructured and implemented on campus once again. The new Albright Excellence program will provide customized learning opportunities aimed at empowering Albright College faculty and staff to improve professional interactions and work more efficiently to provide a quality education and experience for our students.

As part of a soft launch of our Albright Excellence program, Debra Alexander, Albright’s HR Advisor, has designed and facilitated a series of 5 supervisory leadership trainings. These trainings were devised to provide a forum for supervisors to share knowledge and build a learning community. As a result, supervisors will develop a common language and approach to leadership, are able to identify policy, process or procedure gaps that may need to be addressed, and be better able to carry-out their responsibilities during this difficult and challenging time.

These segments were recorded and will be available for those unable to participate in the trainings at a later date. In addition to the recorded sessions, listed here are links to the PowerPoint presentations. The most recent trainings were focused around the changes made to our Performance Review process now call Performance Development. Please click here to access valuable information from these leadership trainings.

Intellectual Wellness is the ability to recognize your creativity, as a way to stimulate your mind.

Intellectual Wellness at Albright College

Physical fitness is not only one of the most important Keys to a healthy body;
it is the bais of dynamic and creative intellectual activity.”
   – John F. Kennedy

The Wellness Program at Albright College promotes intellectual wellness among community members through education of physical activity and exercise, participation in scholastic and cultural activities, and promotion of healthy life choices.  This site serves as an educational hub for Intellectual Wellness opportunities, activities and resources on and off the Albright campus.

  • Participation in scholastic, cultural, and community activities is found to assist people maintaining good cognitive functions as they age.  The following are opportunities to take advantage of at Albright.
    • Experience Events Calendar – Broaden your horizons and exercise your brain by going to speakers, performances, and discussions about different topics.
    • Course Catalog – Ever consider taking or auditing an Albright class?  Maybe for training and development or just for fun!
    • Professional Development – The College offers internal Service Excellence and Management & Leadership training.  You can also see divisional supervisors for additional opportunities.
    • The Albright Library – Reading can stimulate the senses! See our book list below!
    • Center For the Arts
  • Community Opportunities – Similar to the opportunities at Albright there are numerous cultural and historical opportunities in Berks County to get your mind going.  Healthy mind, healthy body.  Here are some recommendations from the Wellness Committee:
  • Exercise and Intellectual Wellness – The following are studies that show that physical activity and exercise promotes mental wellness, helps minimize stress and anxiety, and improves the brain’s ability to solve problems.  Another great resource is Albright’s Schumo Center for Fitness and Well-Being, stop by today!
  • Being better prepared and educated to handle stress, work-life-balance, and other family situation can prevent or assist in alleviating things such as depression that can cause larger problems at work, school, and home.  The following are recourses available.
    • EAP information
    • Brown bag lunch
    • Career Services and ALC information on Time and Stress Management
  • Puzzles to stimulate your brain
  • Book List
    • “Mindset: The New Psychology of Success”, by Carol S. Dweck, Ph.D.
    • “Spark”, by John J. Ratey, MD
    • “Mindfulness: An Eight-Week Plan for Finding Peace in a Frantic World”, by Mark Williams and Danny Penman.
    • Emotionally Intelligent Leadership”, by Marci Shankman
    • “The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People”, by Stephen R. Covey
    • “How Full Is Your Bucket”, by Tom Rath and Donald Clifton
    • “Food Rules”, by Michael Pollan
    • Bird by Bird”, by Anne Lamott.
    • “1984” by George Orwell
    • “The Secret” by Rhonda Byrne
    • “Mind Gym : An Athlete’s Guide to Inner Excellence” by Gary Mack
    • “Eat to Lose, Eat to Win: Your Grab-n-Go Action Plan for a Slimmer, Healthier You”  by Rachel Belle
    • “Unlucky 13” by James Patterson
    • “The Book Thief” by Markus Zusak
    • “The Giver” by Lois Lowry“Fish!” by Stephen C. Lundin
    • “A Street Cat Named Bob: And How He Saved My Life” by James Bowen

Physical Wellness is the ability to recognize the body’s need for physical activity, along with understanding diet and nutrition.

Classes / Events

  • Yoga Flow – every Wednesday at 12:15 p.m. in the group fitness room of the Schumo Center for Fitness and Well-Being.
  • Total Body Fitness Class – every Tuesday and Thursday at 12:15 p.m. in the group fitness room of the Schumo Center for Fitness and Well-Being.
  • No time to work-out?  Check out this quick and easy solution!

Stress Management

  • Need a 10 minute break from your desk or your computer to relieve tight muscles, re-group, and refocus? 
    Utilize the following links for a quick stretch at your desk or learn how to utilize meditation.

    • 10 Minute Stretching Segment
    • Getting Started with Meditation
  • Yoga
  • Massage

Physical Fitness

The American Heart Association recommends 30 minutes of activity each day to reduce the risk of heart disease.  Physical activity is anything that makes you move your body and burn calories, such as climbing stairs or playing sports. The American Heart association and the American College of Sports Medicine are great resources to help you get started.

American Heart Getting Healthy Home Page:

American College of Sports Medicine “Exercise is Medicine” Video Series:

Programs Offered at the Schumo Center for Fitness and Well-Being:

  • Fitness Assessment
  • Fitness Orientation
  • Individualized Exercise Program
  • Personal Training
  • Group Fitness and  X-Biking Classes
  • Aquatic Programs
    • Open Swim, Learn to Swim, Aquatic Exercise Classes, and Scuba Venture.
  • Massage Therapy

Healthy Weight / Healthy BMI

  • Understanding Body Mass IndexBMI stands for Body Mass Index. It is important to know what your BMI does and does not indicate about your weight, health and lifestyle choices. Your BMI is calculated from your height and weight. It is a fairly reliable indicator of body fat for most adults, with athletes and the elderly being two exceptions. BMI is an inexpensive alternative to direct measurements of body fat, such as underwater weighing, but it is only one of many factors that you and your health-care provider should use in evaluating your health status.The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention uses BMI to define terms like overweight and obese:
    • Underweight: BMI below 18.5
    • Normal weight: 18.5 to 24.9
    • Overweight: 25.0 to 29.9
    • Obese: 30.0 and above.

    Click on the link listed below to utilize WebMD’s BMI plus calculator which will help you determine your personal BMI, recommend a healthy weight range, target heart rate, and an estimated target calorie intake to maintain your current weight or work toward your weight loss goals.

Healthy Diet / Weight Loss

  • Jill Zelinsky, is our registered dietician, offers weight management, eating disorders, diabetes, sports nutrition, high blood pressure, high cholesterol. Sessions are 30 minutes long. Appointments are available on specific Monday evenings and can be scheduled by contacting the Gable Health Center at 610-921-7532.
  • Albright Dining Services Fresh & Healthy website – a place to learn about the healthy offerings that are available to you in the Albright Dining Center
  • Smartphone Apps for Eating Healthy
    • eaTipster Created by the Dietitians of Canada. EaTipster delivers daily healthy eating tips to your mobile devices. The app addresses common food and nutrition questions and concerns and provides tips to increase healthy eating, support a healthy weight and fight chronic disease.
    • Calorie Counter & Diet Tracker. The creators may be MyFitness Pal, but the nutrition analysis features will make this app your best nutrition friend. Adjust goals, enter caloric intake (food) and output (exercise), add to the food library and check the progress screen to track how you’re doing.
    • Eat and Move-o-Matic Developed by the Learning Games Lab at New Mexico State University to support the National 4-H Council’s Youth Choice program, this app lets users compare the calories they eat with the time it would take to burn them off through physical activity.
    • PPepperplate, Version 2.3. Ppepperplate is a comprehensive cooking app. It allows you to save all of your recipes in one place and provides essential tools to plan menus, shop and cook. With it you can create menus, shopping lists, weekly or monthly meal plans and even use the app to monitor multiple cook times in the kitchen. Once synced, you can access your entire recipe collection, shopping lists and menus from any mobile device without an internet connection.
    • Gluten Free Daily. Gluten Free Daily is an online guide built to provide education and resources about following a gluten-free diet. Whether you suffer from celiac disease, gluten intolerance, or are in need of guidance in terms of weight loss, wellness or fitness, this app can help.
    • I Cookbook Diabetic. This app comes from the editors of Diabetic Cooking magazine and the original iCookbook app. iCookbook Diabetic delivers recipes and nutrition information for people with diabetes on the go.
  • New Food pyramid
  • A Diet to Boost Your Mood and Energy Level
  • Local, Natural and Organic Goodies:
    • B&H Organic Produce – Morgantown. Organic produce with a focus on greens.
    • Hartz Natural Foods (The “H” of B&H) – Morgantown – is a place for organic dried herbs, and many other random all natural and organic products from cleaners to supplements to meat. A mini grocery store. It is on an organic farm, tucked into the countryside so people who have lived here for years even miss it sometimes!
    • Down Home Acres – Fleetwood. Local, organic produce with a focus on heirloom tomatoes.
    • Nature’s Garden – Reading. Multi-purpose natural store with a little of everything. Like shopping in a mini grocery store.
    • Kimberton Whole Foods –  Kimberton, Douglassville, Downingtown and Ottsville – They have a huge supply of everything under the sun – again like a grocery store.
  • Informational sites:
  • Area Farmer’s Markets:

General Health

Social Wellness is the ability to relate to and connect with other people in our world. Our ability to establish and maintain positive relationships with family, friends and co-workers contributes to our Social Wellness.

Social Wellness is about relationships. Friendships, family, romance, and how you treat the cashier at the grocery store are all aspects of your Social Wellness. Social Wellness involves your ability to foster intimacy in relationships while maintaining supportive boundaries; respecting the needs of others, as well as balancing a social life with personal responsibilities. When your Social Wellness is in order, you feel both supportive and supported. Social Wellness is about the give and take that occurs in healthy relationships so that everyone feels nurtured and loved.

7 Aspects of Wellness 
By The 123 Feel Better Company

Social Wellness is a major life area that is part of the 7 Aspects of Wellness.  It is necessary for a full and complete life.  Our relationships are an important part of who we are and how we feel.  They provide us with a support system during tough times and a place to express our joys when we feel like having fun.  Social Wellness involves building healthy, nurturing and supportive intimate relationships as well as fostering a general connection with everyone around you.  It’s also about learning how to balance your social life with your personal life.

As you explore your Social Wellness, you’ll learn more about setting boundaries, taking care of yourself in relationships, opening up to honesty and sharing your feelings in relationships, and how to reach out to others.  You’ll also discover more about yourself as you determine the types of people you enjoy spending time with and how you can connect with them on a more intimate level.  When you focus on your Social Wellness, you not only feel better, but you want to share that feeling with everyone you meet.  We all need relationships, and the healthier our relationships can be, the better we’ll feel.

College Programs to promote social wellness

  • Monthly book clubs – An opportunity to have companionship while sharing viewpoints about interesting novels
  • Weekly walks around campus – a way to get some exercise while meeting and making new friends on campus
  • Fellowship oriented social groups – small groups sharing that encourages community and personal development

Reading links to Enhance Social Wellness


Environmental Wellness is the ability to coexist in the Environment in a positive and sustaining way for the environment that you exist in.


  • Baking Soda – cleans, deodorizes, softens water, scours.
  • Soap – unscented soap in liquid form, flakes, powders or bars is biodegradable and will clean just about anything. Avoid using soaps which contain petroleum distillates.
  • Lemon – one of the strongest food-acids, effective against most household bacteria.
  • Borax – (sodium borate) cleans, deodorizes, disinfects, softens water, cleans wallpaper, painted walls and floors.
  • White Vinegar – cuts grease, removes mildew, odors, some stains and wax build-up.
  • Washing Soda – or SAL Soda is sodium carbonate decahydrate, a mineral. Washing soda cuts grease, removes stains, softens water, cleans wall, tiles, sinks and tubs. Use care, as washing soda can irritate mucous membranes. Do not use on aluminum.
  • Isopropyl Alcohol – is an excellent disinfectant. (It has been suggested to replace this with ethanol or 100 proof alcohol in solution with water. There is some indication that isopropyl alcohol buildup contributes to illness in the body.)
  • Cornstarch – can be used to clean windows, polish furniture, shampoo carpets and rugs.
  • Citrus Solvent – cleans paint brushes, oil and grease, some stains. (Citrus solvent may cause skin, lung or eye irritations for people with multiple chemical sensitivities.)


  • Place bottles and cans in the appropriate containers both on and off campus
  • Look for the green and blue recycle containers in the buildings and offices.   All recycle materials are comingled and sorted at the recycle location.
  • Compost leaves and grass clippings
  • Donate clothes, shoes, books, and automobiles
  • Reuse grocery bags and containers


  • They provide an ecological benefit to the environment.   Since they have adapted to local conditions they are more resistant to pest problems and need less water.
  • They provide food and shelter to insects, birds, bees,  butterflies and other creatures
  • Look for many listings  under “Native Plants in PA” on the internet or call your local extension office.  In Berks County the phone number is (610)378-1327.
  • Albright’s Horticulturist, Frances Torcivia, has extensive lists of natives and information which can be replicated upon request.   She is at ext. 5622.


  • One teaspoon of dish soap in one quart of water will control a large range of garden pests.
  • Mites and aphids can be removed from shrubs with a hard spray from a garden hose.
  • One tablespoon of olive oil added to one quart of water with a few drops of liquid soap is an effective way to smother pests and their eggs.


  • On campus periodic collection dates are posted for materials to be taken to our Science building. Freida Texter Ph.D. is the contact person for that operation. She is at ext. 7747

Financial Wellness is the ability to find the intricate balance of the mental, spiritual and physical aspects of money.

Helpful Links

Financial (Managing a Budget, credit card access, credit scores, identity theft, retirement planning, etc.)

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