Today, Fort Lewis College announced it will join the Partnership for a Healthier America (PHA), which works with the private sector and PHA honorary chair First Lady Michelle Obama to make healthier choices easier, in a three-year commitment to adopt guidelines around food and nutrition, and physical activity and programming. This initiative will impact more than 1 million students, faculty and staff on campuses across 29 states.
“Active minds in active bodies is one of the characteristics I want Fort Lewis College students to exemplify while they’re on campus and after they graduate,” says FLC President Dene Thomas. “Joining with initiatives like the Partnership for a Healthier America is one way to help our students achieve a healthy lifestyle now and in the future.”
Working with a group of the nation’s leading nutrition, physical activity and campus wellness experts, PHA has a set of guidelines to build healthier environments for college and university students. In trying to recognize the unique nature of each campus, colleges and universities choose which guidelines they want to complete upon joining the initiative, and have until the end of the three-year commitment to fully implement them. These guidelines were created to give credit for existing campus wellness efforts, as well as to challenge colleges and universities to do more.
Fort Lewis College has agreed to implement the following guidelines over the next three years:
FOOD AND NUTRITION
Fort Lewis College will implement the following food and nutrition guidelines:
Provide healthier food and beverage services in campus-operated dining venues every operational day:
- Offer on the menu a minimum of one (1) wellness meal at each breakfast, lunch and dinner meal (if served).
- Offer a minimum five (5) types of fruits, five (5) types of vegetables and two (2) 100% whole grain products at both lunch and dinner (if served).
- Offer only a total number of fried foods that does not exceed the total number of platforms available at breakfast, lunch, and dinner (if served) across all venues.
- Offer and identify as healthier at point of presentation at least three (3) desserts at both lunch and dinner (if served) that have ≤150 calories as served.
- Identify food and beverage items using one (1) of the following strategies:
- Label food and beverage items offered with calories per serving at the point of presentation;
- Designate healthier food and beverage options using a healthy icon at the point of presentation.
- Implement a comprehensive, strategic product placement/merchandising program/policy within dining venues to encourage healthier food consumption. The program/policy will include a minimum of five (5) strategies, such as placing healthier food and beverage options at the front of platforms.
Implement local food or sustainability program in campus food service:
- Implement a local food procurement program (e.g., Real Food Challenge) that increases procurement of local and sustainable foods.
Provide healthier catering services on campus:
- Offer one (1) of the following healthier catering menu options:
- Offer a minimum of three (3) types of fruits, three (3) types of vegetables, two (2) 100% whole grain products and no more than two (2) fried items on catering menus;
- Offer a healthier catering menu that only includes foods and beverages that meet healthier food and nutrition guidelines.
- Ensure the percentage of healthier beverage purchases (in dollars) is a minimum of sixty percent (60%) of total beverage purchases (in dollars) for catering.
Promote water consumption on campus:
- Make free water available in all dining venues and all educational/physical activity facilities.
Fort Lewis College will implement the following physical activity/movement guidelines:
Create a built environment that encourages healthier choices on campus:
- Provide marked walking routes on campus, one of which must be at least two (2) miles in length and have distance markers at regular intervals. A route map is made available to individuals on campus.
- Provide at least one (1) bicycle parking space on campus for every fifteen (15) individuals on campus.
- Offer a bicycle share/rental program and/or a subsidized bicycle purchase program for all students.
Encourage student physical activity/movement through facilities and programs on campus during the academic year:
- Dedicate at least seventy-five percent (75%) of the primary campus recreation center
- Offer a minimum of forty (40) total:
- Diverse non-competitive group fitness opportunities during each academic year.
- Diverse competitive sports, intramural or informal recreation opportunities each academic year.
- Offer, without a user fee, a minimum of one (1) monthly “how to” physical activity/ movement class that introduces students to new activities.
Encourage outdoor physical activity/movement on campus:
- Provide at least one outdoor running/walking track that is open and available for use to individuals on campus and the community for at least three (3) hours per day.
- Offer a rental outdoor recreation equipment program for students
- Offer at least twenty (20) outdoor recreation clinics and/or trips during each academic year.
Provide trained physical activity/movement professionals on campus:
- Make available certified personal trainers for all students.
Fort Lewis College will implement the following programming guidelines:
Implement an integrated, comprehensive wellness program for individuals on campus that is provided annually. The program will include all of the following components:
- A coordinating committee that includes student, faculty, administrative and staff representatives and meets at least quarterly;
- Health and wellness education and activities for all individuals on campus;
- Activities that incorporate provisions for individuals with disabilities;
- A promotion plan to market the wellness program through at least one online venue and three physical venues on campus;
- Provision of annual physical activity/movement and nutrition training for all resident assistants (RAs) to help them inform students about campus resources available for wellness.
Offer other wellness programs on campus:
- Implement a program/policy that identifies students who may be food insecure and provides options on campus.
- Implement a program/policy that supports and accommodates breastfeeding for mothers on campus.
“Colleges and universities are in a unique position to help shape tomorrow’s leaders. The college years are a time when lifelong habits begin to form, and for many students, this is their first opportunity to make their own choices about food and lifestyle,” said PHA CEO Lawrence A. Soler. “By creating healthier food and physical activity environments today, campuses and universities are encouraging healthier habits that will carry into tomorrow and for decades to come.”
For more information on PHA’s Healthier Campus Initiative, visit www.ahealthieramerica.org/campuses.
About Fort Lewis College
Situated 6,872 feet above sea level atop a mesa overlooking the Animas River Valley and historic downtown Durango, Colorado, Fort Lewis College is the Southwest’s crossroads of education and adventure. With a diverse population of nearly 4,000 students from 50 states, 155 American Indian tribes and Native Alaskan villages, and 17 countries, the college offers a blend of small classes, dynamic academic programs, and a liberal arts perspective to create transformative learning experiences that foster entrepreneurship, leadership, creative problem solving, and life-long learning. Known for its distinctive architectural theme which utilizes locally-quarried sandstone, acknowledges the region’s Native puebloan building style, and evokes the Four Corners’ landscape and colors, Fort Lewis College was recently named by Forbes as one of America’s Top Colleges, and by Forbes and Princeton Review as one of the Best Western Colleges in the United States. For more information, please visit www.fortlewis.edu; like the college on Facebook at www.facebook.com/FortLewis; and follow the institution on Instagram at @fortlewiscollege and Twitter at @FLCDurango.
The Partnership for a Healthier America (PHA) is devoted to working with the private sector to ensure the health of our nation’s youth by solving the childhood obesity crisis. In 2010, PHA was created in conjunction with – but independent from – First Lady Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move! effort. PHA is a nonpartisan nonprofit organization that is led by some of the nation’s most respected health and childhood obesity experts. PHA brings together public, private and nonprofit leaders to broker meaningful commitments and develop strategies to end childhood obesity. Most important, PHA ensures that commitments made are commitments kept by working with unbiased, third parties to monitor and publicly report on the progress our partners are making. For more information about PHA, please visit www.aHealthierAmerica.org and follow PHA on Twitter @PHAnews.