Serving and Living in Harmony
By Dr. Adelaide Durkin, DNP, MS, RN, CNE, DipACLM
Part of the Kettering College mission is our desire to instill in our students the understanding of health as “harmony with God in body mind and spirit while preparing for a life of service”. 1 Eugene Kettering’s vision statement for our institution includes a similar concept of “satisfying lives of service.”2
These ideas communicate a commitment to prepare health professionals who will serve clients holistically but who will also lead harmonious and balanced lives by the time they leave Kettering College to serve our local and global community.
If this is part of our “end goal” for our students, I would like to submit that a commitment to care for self and others with a whole-person approach is a journey that is comprised of small steps that we, as individuals and a community, take each day. From the moment students enroll at Kettering College to each day spent in classes, labs, and clinicals, they begin a transformation that faculty, staff, and peers become a part of.
Recently I read a quote that helps to highlight the impact of our surroundings in our health and wellbeing: “Cultures are webs of social influences that shape workers’ [and students] behavior. Health and well-being efforts can be most effective when supported by these social influences. (p.2)” 3
The literature supports the positive impact of university/college campus-based health initiatives and interventions on improving physical and mental health, decreasing anxiety, adopting a healthy lifestyle, increasing academic performance, building community, preventing substance abuse, and increased job satisfaction and productivity for employees. 4 -5
Because of our collective influence on our work/learning environment, we have the opportunity to support each other on this journey to grow in our understanding of what it means to live harmoniously in the 2023 and 2024 school year. Collectively, we can contribute to, and advocate for, an environment that promotes excellent student outcomes and supports a satisfying life for faculty and staff. We can equip our community and protect against stress and burnout. 5
As we launch our Holistic Health Corner, I would like to challenge us to reflect about our personal health vision as well as the mission for Kettering College for us as faculty, staff, and students. We will use this space to share a variety of content: evidence-based health nuggets that support Biblical principles for healthy living, success stories, learning opportunities, recipes, and other resources to support one another in this common mission we share.
Research highlight: A recent study shows that vigorous physical activity for a minimum of 3 ½ minutes a day showed to reduce cancer incidence and 4½ minutes daily reduced the risk of certain cancers connected to physical activity. The sample included non-exercising adults. Although this level of exercise does not meet the guidelines, it shows the positive impact of even small amounts of physical activity. Let’s keep moving!
Recipes: 25 grab and go lunch ideas for busy days. We hope these ideas will provide some inspiration for you to pack a healthier lunch and take one small step to caring for your whole self.
- Kettering College (n.d.)The Kettering College Story https://kc.edu/about/
- Kettering college Mission Statements https://kc.edu/about/mission-statements/
- Creating a culture of Health and Uniting a Complex Health System: Johns Hopkins Medicine https://www.cdc.gov/workplacehealthpromotion/initiatives/resource-center/case-studies/johns-hopkins-medicine.html
- International Health promotion University and College (n.d.) Resources https://www.healthpromotingcampuses.org/okanagan-charter-2/
- Melnyk, B. (2023) Fixing broken systems and unhealthy cultures in healthcare and educational institutions is key to improving the mental health and well-being of nurses, the healthcare workforce, faculty, and students. Worldviews on Evidence-Based Nursing Editorial doi:10.1111./wvn.12642