Category Archives: Intellectual

Our minds need to be continually inspired and exercised just as our bodies do. The intellectual dimension encourages openness to new ideas, motivation to master new skills, a sense of humor, creativity, and curiosity. People who possess a high level of intellectual wellness have an active mind and never stop learning. Striving for personal growth and a willingness to seek out and use new information are also characteristics of an intellectually-well individual

QR Code? Wait, What??

Have you seen the funny looking bar code squares around campus? You may or may not know what they are but QR Codes are very useful to get quick information on products, services and promotions.  The UND Financial Wellness Services team is utilizing these codes as well to offer discounts for businesses in the area. Check out a door hanger they used for the Student Discount Program that has a QR Code on it:


Most smart phones with cameras are able to scan these QR Codes and get directed to a specific website on your cell phone instantly.  Follow the steps and images below to get started using QR Codes:

1. Start by searching your app store for a QR Code Reader such as Google Goggles or RedLaser.


2. After opening up the app take a picture of the code by clicking the “SCAN” button and hover over your QR Code Square like in the image below:


3.Once your QR Code has been successfully scanned the link to the website of the QR Code will pop-up! All you have to do is click on the link:


4.And there you go! You have reached your QR Codes Destination:


QR Codes can be used with ALL types of Smart Phones.  There are a variety of scanners and they each have different features.  Explore which one makes the most sense for you and start scanning the world.

See if you can find a QR code for the UND Student Discount Program to test out your new skills.

Stuck at a Plateau??

Are you stuck at a plateau for exercising?

We’ve all been there with all different approaches on how to change up our routine or possibly not change up the routine at all and hoping that it’s just a minor phase in exercising.

After doing some research there is a fun new piece of equipment that can help in your exercise routine while helping to improve on your power and performance with weightlifting/powerlifting. This piece of equipment is called kettlebells. kettlebell1What makes a kettlebell so unique is the continuous and never-ending improvement which gives you a full body workout. The kettlebell appears to have something to do with the cannonball shape and the offset handle, which allow you to manipulate the kettlebell much differently than you could with a dumbbell, barbell, or any other training device. The shape and the handle allow you to perform ballistics and grinds. Ballistics are fast, explosive movements, while grinds are slow and deliberate. I have added kettlebell into my exercise routine and afterwards I feel the workout instantly. I wish I would’ve know about this piece of equipment before but now that I have I want to let everyone else in on this secret for a full body workout and to help improve on their exercise routine.


The best way to get started is to find a certified instructor KettleBell2and get qualified instruction from the beginning, if you can. This will ensure you get started off the right way and get results, faster and more safely than trying to figure it out on your own. For total body strengthening and conditioning, kettlebells are definitely a very special fitness and performance training tool to incorporate into your program.


- FLEX Intern  Kelsey Olson

Your Turn.

Take a moment to imagine something with me: You are given money to change/create something in the Grand Cities area that would help to make it feel more like a place you want to live. It’s your idea, your plan, and your operation. What would you do?

OK, now stop imagining and start doing: dreaming, thinking, planning… sketch it out on paper.

It might be your birthday, but even if it’s not you now have this unique opportunity to make an impact in our community. With funding from the Knight Foundation and Community Foundation, YOU- college students, recent grads, young people, youthful professionals and groups, and Millennials are encouraged to submit ideas they’d like to see come to life.

A group of students and community professionals from Grand Forks and East Grand Forks have been meeting up to put together this opportunity, which we’re calling Forkin’ it Over. This is a chance for you to learn more about what the area has to offer and what it needs to offer in order to be more attractive to young people; to connect with the community in new and innovative ways; and to be informed and engaged with a variety of great people in our community.

Nothing fun to do here?
Too hard to meet people in the community?
Feeling as though we lack stuff?

Apply for a micro grant from $500-3,000 by visiting and clicking on the Micro Grant button to fill out one-page form by 5:00pm on Monday, November 18th.. Ideas will be presented and grants will be awarded at a Grants Night Event on Thursday, November 21st at the Empire from 7-9pm. Whether or not you submit an idea, you are encouraged to attend for an evening of networking, food, beverages, music and more!

Need some inspiration? Click here!

For more information, check out this Poster. 

Adventures of a FLEX intern!

Greetings UND Wellness Center members! My name is Matt McCreary and I am a senior majoring in Exercise Science and Wellness here at UND and I’m also a FLEX Intern at the Wellness Center for this Fall 2013 semester. FLEX stands for Future Leaders in Exercise and that’s exactly what I hope to be in the future. I’m hoping this internship provides useful insight into what I can expect in potential career opportunities while also helping to polish my skills as an effective communicator regarding health and wellness knowledge.   My main responsibilities as a FLEX Intern are performing fitness assessments on members of the Wellness Center. This can range anywhere from getting skinfold measurements taken to a cardiovascular test on a treadmill. These are helpful tools for those of you who have health goals but maybe don’t know where to start.  The fitness assessments are only a small fraction of services and activities offered at the Wellness Center._MG_0195

Part of my process in becoming acclimated with the Wellness Center’s various offerings was to shadow one of the personal trainers and also to attend a Group Exercise (GX) class. I was fortunate to shadow Shawn, one of the personal trainers here at the Wellness Center, while he was with his client. Having a personal trainer that can help you reach your goals while also holding you accountable during the workout is the best of both worlds. These trainers understand that you want their help, and in return they put their best effort into developing a program that can meet your goals. They also are there to push you when things get tough, to motivate you feel like you want to quit, and to congratulate you when you complete your workout. I observed all three of these scenarios during Shawn’s and his client’s 75 minute session, and needless to say I was very impressed with the quality of work and _MG_0720effort from the two of them.

Another task I had to accomplish was to attend a GX class. Even though this is my 5th year at UND I never once attended a GX class prior to this internship. I attended the Power Cycling class offered on Saturdays at 11 in the morning. This was a new experience for me and shortly after it began a fun one at that. The class consisted of cycling at various speeds, resistance, and postures for 45 minutes. The class is set in the upstairs cycling room, fully equipped with a sound system, black lights, and a projector screen that plays music videos. Generally the rhythmic cycling that you do corresponds to the beat of the song playing, which provides the class with a little more entertainment than just staring at a blank wall in silence for 45 minutes. For me the biggest factor that got me working harder was the resistance on the bike. At first there is no resistance on the bike so pedaling is super easy, but as the class progresses the instructor will have you increase the resistance gradually. The resistance on the bike is altered a lot throughout the class which makes for a good change of pace in your cycling speed and thus your work output. GX 3

Overall this was a fun class and I recommend students and faculty take advantage of these free GX classes. There is something for everyone, whether you are super fit, a beginner, an early riser, a dance enthusiast, or a FLEX Intern. There’s plenty more to come in this blog so stay tuned for more insights.

- Matt McCreary

Specialty Group Exercise Classes

Have you ever wondered “Why should I pay for group exercise classes when there are free ones on the schedule?”

Believe me, I’ve wondered the same thing. – but then I realized one of the MAJOR benefits that come from these classes.  I’m the type of person who doesn’t like being surrounded by a TON of people when I exercise.  I usually workout at the Wellness during times when there are NOT a lot of people in the building – but I’ve always wanted a little extra guidance and motivation with my workouts without the many faces all trying to do the same things as me at the same time – like in group exercise classes.  Let’s face it – I can get stuck in a rut sometimes, even as a personal trainer.  So my choices for the extra guidance & motivation as well as the major change up to my routine was either hire a personal trainer for an hourly rate OR look into the Specialty Group Exercise program.  Since I was a college student at this point – I was like any other college student and strapped for cash I had to decide what was more budget friendly, but still getting the same results.  The answer?  Specialty Group Exercise.

So when I discovered Boxing which was offered as a Specialty Class (a few years ago) – I fell in love with the SMALL class size.  There were only 8 people in my class and I got some very valuable attention and training at about 1/12th the cost of a personal training package!  Strapped for cash

I had never pushed myself so hard in a workout in a long time.  Sure in the past I’ve always had my good workouts that left me sore the next day, but in this case someone was there holding me accountable making sure I wasn’t letting myself become complacent and take the “easy” route.  They encouraged me when I didn’t feel that great about myself,helped me meet my fitness goals and kept me moving!!

Now while Boxing isn’t here this semester (bummer I know!) – I know there are some great options to choose from – there is ViPR which is brand new and puts a fantastic Outdoor 4spin on strength training – taking you back to some very functional work in a new light.  Reformer Pilates (which I’ve taught in the past) that is a great CORE workout that helps with balance too – after teaching that class I always felt stronger than when I wasn’t teaching!  Rise & Climb is a completely NEW concept – this class will teach you how to become a better climber, become a stronger climber and will get you into the wall during the off hours (now ladies – who couldn’t use a little upper body strengthening?  Am I right??)  And lastly Beginner’s Mediation Yoga – which will help you center yourself spiritually & emotionally to be able to help find yourself & help keep you calm in the waning moments of the fall semester.  Registration is going on NOW for all of these so I encourage you to sign up too before all the spots are gone!  Head to the Wellness Center website NOW!!!

2012 Welcome Weekend 062

I hope to see ALL of you trying something new!

How to Keep your Student Debt Low

By Dana Kraus
Let’s face it, college is expensive.  After working all summer to save up some cash, there is nothing worse than the feeling of paying your tuition bill – and still not having enough money!  So you take out loans hoping that one day you will land a good job and it will all be worth it.  But even then, with the average graduating student loan debt over $26,000, it will still likely take you around ten years to pay back your loans. 

You might wonder; what can I do about this?  By making wise choices now about what loans you accept, how much you choose to borrow, and how you spend your money, you can severely reduce your student loan debt.  So here are some quick tips that can help you obtain money for college without leaving yourself in a financial mess after you graduate.

     1.  Keep looking for Scholarships and Grants

You should continue looking for scholarships and grants even after you start your college education.  Grants and scholarships are a type of gift aid; this means they don’t need to be paid back.  The more money you’re able to find in grants and scholarships, the less you’ll have to take out in college loans.  This means less money you have to worry about paying-off when you get your degree.

      2.  Get a job

In addition to school scholarships and grants, getting an off-campus job or a Federal Work Study job on campus can help you bring in some extra dough that can really help you keep your loans down and pay them back faster.  Even if you’re only working a minimal amount of hours, the extra cash can go towards living expenses like rent, gas, and groceries.

     3.  Don’t accept every loan in your Financial Aid letter

If you don’t need the money, don’t take it out.  Only accept the amount of money you need for school and only accept loans that have terms you know you’ll be able to pay back.  Avoid taking out extra loans to finance your hobbies.  Also, take a look at the interest rates – generally, federal loans have the best interest rates and can be subsidized, meaning the interest doesn’t start accumulating until after graduation.

      4.  Cut simple daily expenses

There are simple ways you can cut your daily expense, which will allow you to rely less heavy on college loans without dramatically changing your life.  Watch the money you spend on perishable items like food and coffee.  By simply making your own morning coffee or cutting back on impulse snacks, you can save up to hundreds of dollars over a year’s span.  Another simple way to cut expenses each semester is by buying used textbook or the online version of the book, or by renting your textbooks.

           By making the most of your money as well as taking advantage of free gift-aid available you will put yourself in the best position for paying your student loans back in a timely fashion. 


How to Keep Debt Low.  (2013).  Retrieved April 06, 2013 from Campus Explorer:

Kingkade, T. (2013, January 31).  Student Loan Debt: New Reports Find ‘Unsustainable’ Trend Dragging Economy.  Retrieved April 06, 2013, from HuffingtonPost:

Back to School

Back to School

Tips For A Healthier Freshman Year

Welcome to your college freshman year…the beginning of a new and exciting adventure. This may be the first time your away from your parents for an extended period of time, and this most likely, is the first time you are living on your own. Many freshman students find adjusting to the “college lifestyle” to be quite challenging. It could be a culture shock having to actually do your own laundry, make your own food, clean up after yourself, and to have nobody telling you how or when to do so. One of the hardest things to learn when you first come to college is how to balance all of your needs with the demands that come along with a full course load. Trying to figure out how to balance being involved on campus, getting a job, making new friends, staying connected with friends back home, and getting in enough study time, could cause your health to go to the back burner. The hard thing about that is that when your health starts to become lesser and lesser of a priority, balancing and adapting to this new college lifestyle will become even more challenging. The good news is that there are some key tips to follow in order to keep your health on track that can make it easier to maintain balance throughout your college career.

Check out these rockin’ tips for a healthy school year:

  • Get enough sleep: It is a common thing for college students to pull all-nighters to get in an attempt to get in some extra studying time or because procrastination on some paper or project. Not having a regularized sleep schedule could cause not only cause physical health problems, but also mental health problems as well. These could include problems such as anxiety, irritability, and weight gain. It is recommended to get at least eight hours of sleep a night.
  • Stay active: Make exercise a part of your lifestyle. There are plenty of ways to stay active on campus, such as going to the wellness center with a friend, joining intramurals, taking a stroll around campus, or biking, rollerblading, or running on campus. Exercise burns off excess calories and it can also reduce stress, anxiety, and depression. Exercise should not be the main priority in your lifestyle, but it should become a regular habit.

         >UND Wellness Center

  • Take time to relax: Not only is balancing the many demands of college difficult, but it can also be stressful. It is extremely important to pay attention to your emotional needs, as they are just as important as studying for that first test that you are stressing about. Stress can lead to health issues if not addressed and dealt with properly. If you are feeling overwhelmed, take time for yourself to relax and do quiet and/or enjoyable, non-schoolwork related activities. Reach out to a family member or a trusted friend to talk about what is stressing you out. Taking care of your mind will allow you to better focus when studying and it will allow you to maintain a healthy mind and body.

>UND Meditation Center

>UND Counseling Center

>Wellness Center Quiet Lounge

  • Be mindful of your diet: Make sure that you are trying to eat balanced, nutritious meals. You may have heard of the ever so popular, but dreaded, phrase “the freshman 15.” Experts say that although the generalized number of fifteen pounds of weight gain isn’t exactly accurate, students do typically gain weight during their freshman year of college. First off, make sure to eat breakfast to help your metabolism get started for the day and give you energy for those morning classes. Secondly, snacking isn’t a bad thing as long as you are monitoring it and trying to include relatively healthy snacks such as: apples and peanut butter, low-fat popcorn, or veggies or pita chips with hummus. Students should strive for a balanced diet to stay healthy. A balanced diet includes foods from every food group such as: fruits, grains, veggies, dairy, and protein. Having a balanced diet will help to prevent weight gain and to keep your body and mind healthy in general.

> Nutrition Resources

*For more information on how to stay healthy as you are adjusting to the new school year visit the Health and Wellness Hub on the main floor of the student union, or visit Student Health Services located in McCannel Hall- Room 100.

Source: Kang, Jaewon. “4 Steps to a Healthier Freshman Year | USA TODAY College.” 4 Steps to a Healthier Freshman Year | USA TODAY College. USA Today Educate, 2013. Web. 16 Sept. 2013.

I’m an ADULT?!

I remember the transition from “youth” to “adult” very clearly; to me it meant that my mom and dad were slowly no longer helping me pay my bills. One by one, I transitioned into the sole provider for groceries, rent, student loans, and finally at the ripe old age of 26, health insurance. Like it or not… this will more than likely be your future, too.


I was fortunate to grow up in a home where I could go to the doctor when I broke my arm or struggled to breathe from congestion. I had no clue how the health system worked past “when you get sick, you go to the doctor.” Once I transitioned into being an adult, I learned that going to the doctor costs money, and health insurance is an important part of the process.


The Greater Grand Forks Young Professionals understand the importance of educating the population about important topics, which is how our Grand Forks Vote initiative came into fruition last year. Now, as the Affordable Care Act goes into effect, the organization saw an opportunity to once again help residents understand the changes.


You are all invited to join us on Thursday, September 19th from 7-8:30pm in the City Council Chambers for a panel discussion presented by GGFYP, the Alliance for Healthcare Access, and the Grand Forks Public Health Department.The purpose of the panel is to help us learn what does and does not do; what it means for our region; and what the future may hold. The event will also include an introduction to the Insurance Marketplace and a question and answer session.


We encourage you to check out the website for more information; it also features an area where you are able to submit a question to the panelists ahead of time. This is an especially handy feature for those who may not be able to make it to City Hall. Did I mention that this will also be televised on City Television (channel 2)? It will, so tune in!


Our esteemed panel, moderated by the UND Center for Rural Health, will include representatives from Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Dakota, Grand Forks Social Services, Valley Community Health Centers, Altru Health Systems, and Region VII Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS).

I  look forward to learning more about what how the Affordable Care Act will affect my household. Whether in person or on TV, I hope you will join us on Thursday at 7pm!

ACA Save the Date

Stay on Track over July 4th

Vacations involve relaxing and enjoying yourself, but that doesn’t mean you have to give up on your health and fitness. People often have trouble sticking to their diet or exercise routine over the holidays, but there are ways to avoid this. Here are some steps to stay on track over July 4th:

  1. Drink water—being outside for the majority of the day can dehydrate you, avoid pops and other drinks and stick to drinking water for less calories and more hydration.
  2. Grill Buster—the summer holidays would not be complete without the grill, but be careful of what you choose to grill. Avoid eating brats and hot dogs, and stick to lean ground beef hamburgers or grilled chicken breast on whole wheat buns or go bunless!
  3. Skip the chips—instead of chips have cut up veggies as a side with hummus
  4. Fruit for dessert—have cut up fruit for dessert and skip the cookies and cake (you will probably have a late night S’more for your chocolate fix—but limit it to one)
  5. Small Plates—serving food on smaller plates will make people take less food to start off with.
  6. Bring tennis shoes—if you don’t bring tennis shoes you are less likely to stay active.
  7. Keep Moving—go for a bike ride, go swimming, go on a hike, tubing, kayaking, water-skiing, bring a Frisbee, football or soccer ball.

Hopefully these tips will help you enjoy your vacation and stay on track with your diet and fitness.

bike ride








This blog post was written by Annie Marhula, dietetic student.

Summertime food safety

Many people enjoy the warm summer weather by camping; however, a challenge may be what to pack and how to keep your food safe. Here are some tips and food safety recommendations to consider when planning for your next camping adventure.

Do all prep work prior to arriving at your destination. This includes cutting up all fruits, veggies, and other items that require prep work. This will save you time and less hassle when preparing your meals.

Pack snacks in baggies with the right portion for convenience and to avoid overeating.

Know your cooking temps!

  •  Beef and pork                   =             145⁰
  • Ground beef and pork   =             160⁰
  • All poultry                           =             165

Store foods properly! This avoids possible cross-contamination between raw and ready-to-eat foods.

  • Have a separate cooler for raw meats.
  • Try to leave cooler closed and away from the sun as much as possible.
  • Pack the cooler with large ice packs, or blocks of ice, and restock with ice sold by the campground.
  • Coolers with cold food must always have ice.
  • Temperature should be ≤ 40⁰ F

Know the temperature DANGER ZONE!

  • Danger zone = 40⁰ F – 140⁰F
  • If food remains in the danger zone for more than 2-hours, DO NOT EAT IT!

Plan a menu so you know how long you will need to keep certain foods cold.

Freeze your meats.

Make sure to put all food in your car or camper at night.

Bring bottled water for drinking if the water there is not safe to drink.

Make sure you have hand sanitizer, disinfecting wipes, and dish soap to use before and after eating, and to clean all cooking equipment.

Snack Ideas:

  • Homemade trail mix, cut up fruits and veggies, granola bars

Best Camping Breakfasts:

  • Oatmeal (just add hot water and enjoy with dried fruit & nuts), bagels, or cold cereal and milk

Go to Camping Dinner:

  • Campfire Hobos: put any meat, potatoes, veggies, & cheese on  a sheet of foil, wrap it tight, and cook over the fire.

Don’t Forget to pack:

  • Napkins, silverware, cups, plates, cooking utensils, seasonings, paper towels, cleaning supplies, flashlight, matches/lighter, trash bags, towels, bug spray, and sunscreen!

Follow these tips and you will be sure to have enjoyable camping experiences throughout the summer.

Blog post written by Annie Marhula, dietetic student.

Information obtained from:


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