Health and Lifestyle

Herbert Wellness Center Staffers Step Up to Keep UM Safe

Three professional staff members become certified CPR and first aid instructors.

From left, Christina WooChing, Elena Fajardo, and Nikki Reifschneider display mannequins and a training AED used used in a CPR certification class.

CORAL GABLES, Fla. (September 19, 2016) – When the Patti and Allan Herbert Wellness Center found itself in need of CPR and First Aid instructors, it took some creative brainstorming to find the appropriate solution: three Herbert Wellness Center professional staff members stepped up to the plate and became certified instructors. Elena Fajardo, customer service manager, Nikki Reifschneider, assistant director of fitness and personal training, and Christina WooChing, assistant director of wellness programs, knew that by becoming certified instructors, the University of Miami would immediately become a safer community.

CPR and First Aid classes are free for Herbert Wellness Center student employees, and all emergency care courses are available to the public regardless of membership at the Herbert Wellness Center.
“As a fitness professional, I feel I am always in a position where patrons around me could potentially need CPR/AED or First Aid,” says Reifschneider. “I realized that not only is it necessary that I be certified, but that my fitness room staff and personal trainers be certified as well.”
Two eight-hour days of off-campus training tested the three women’s knowledge of what they thought they knew about CPR and First Aid, and taught them ways to organize fun and engaging classes.
“The best part about the training was the team-bonding experience I had with Elena and Nikki,” says WooChing, the newest member of the Herbert Wellness Center team. “We can now support each other in our staff positions and in teaching. We are already planning to co-facilitate some sessions.”
As professional staff members, and now as instructors, Fajardo, Reifschneider, and WooChing are working to create a safer community for UM students, faculty and staff. The women are also excited to give back to the students under their own roof. Every Herbert Wellness Center student employee has access to free CPR and First Aid training. With additional instructors, more student employees will learn how to quickly and appropriately respond during emergency situations, both on duty and in their everyday life.
“I want to make our facility and the UM campus as safe as it can be,” explains Fajardo. “It is important that our student staff is highly trained and prepared to expertly react to any emergency.”
The Herbert Wellness Center is one of the Coral Gables campus’s busiest facilities. Almost everything within its walls involves some level of physical activity. Thinking fast and feeling confident when responding to an emergency is imperative. CPR and First Aid classes equip participants with the preparation and skills to handle high-pressure situations. The Herbert Wellness Center operates under a high service standard of safety, and with three new emergency care instructors, that standard was just raised to new heights.
“The fact that we can potentially save a life or help in a crisis—who wouldn’t want the ability to do that?” adds Reifschneider. “I know if something were to happen to me, I would want a certified individual to step in and help.”
All emergency care courses are open to both members and non-members of the Herbert Wellness Center and are offered several times throughout the semester. For more information about emergency care courses or to register, click here.
Learn proper CPR technique, AED use and relief of choking in adults, children and infants. Upon completion of the course, those enrolled receive a two-year certification from the American Red Cross.
• Wednesday, October 5 from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.
• Saturday, November 5 from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.
• Monday, November 14 from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.
• Saturday, December 10 from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.
Learn how to manage illness and injuries in the first few minutes until professional help arrives.
• Wednesday, October 26 from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.
• Tuesday, November 8 from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.
• Wednesday, December 7 from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.
“UM is an active and dynamic campus,” says WooChing. “There are some situations you cannot plan for, so you never know when these simple, easy-to-learn skills could save someone’s life.”

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Staying Sane in an Insane World

Multiple work, family, and social demands can take their toll on one’s emotional well-being, often leading us to feel vulnerable and wondering how we will cope and manage it all. So much of our time and energy are spent tending to the needs of others that we forget to care for ourselves. This seminar is offered for those interested in exploring positive, proactive strategies to reclaim, cultivate, and nourish their sanity. This seminar will be facilitated by a UM Faculty and Staff Assistance Program consultant.

Rosenstiel campus: Wednesday, October 5, 12-1 p.m., Library Media room

Coral Gables campus: Thursday, October 6, 12-1 p.m., McKnight Building, room 201AB

Miller School campus: Friday, October 7, 12-1 p.m., Clinical Research Building, room 1381A

FSAP Health and Wellness seminars are offered as part of the University of Miami’s Well ‘Canes Program. Register through ulearn.miami.edu. For help with ULearn registration, or to receive email announcements of upcoming seminars, please call the FSAP at 305-284-6604.


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#HealthyCampus Week Offers Free Yoga, Bootcamp, and Expo

Special to UM News

yogaclassCORAL GABLES, Fla. (September 14, 2016) – #HealthyCampus Week is back and the Patti and Allan Herbert Wellness Center, in collaboration with the Partnership for a Healthier America Healthier Campus Initiative, will highlight and support healthy choices on campus September 20-23 with a variety of special events and activities free to the UM community.

Get ready to challenge yourself with the #CanesStayFit Body Bootcamp. The bootcamp features a variety of exercises and intervals on Tuesday, September 20 at 7 p.m. in the Herbert Wellness Center’s Centre Court.

“This class is a great opportunity for people to be social and stay fit at the same time,” says Michelle Kasparian, assistant director of group exercise and community classes at the Herbert Wellness Center. “We’ve enlisted our best instructors to give the UM community the most rewarding fitness bootcamp class Miami has to offer.”

On Wednesday, September 21, students will learn how to make healthy and delicious dorm-friendly dishes at the Dorm Room Cooking Demo. Held in the Herbert Wellness Center Atrium at noon, this cooking demo provides students with the tools to prepare food in their dorm room like a master chef.

“The majority of college dorm rooms are scattered with unhealthy foods like chips, candy, and soda,” says Christina WooChing, assistant director of wellness programs at the Herbert Wellness Center. “We want to help students combat their unhealthy dorm-eating habits and provide them with easy meals to make that aren’t ramen noodles.”

#HealthyCampus Week culminates with a double-header of events on Thursday, September 22. Come meet all the UM campus partners involved in making the healthy choice the easy choice at the #HealthyCampus Expo at 4:30 p.m. in the Herbert Wellness Center Atrium. Once you’ve met the partners, venture upstairs to the Main Gym and take part in UM’s Largest Yoga Class at 5:30 p.m. In celebration of Yoga Awareness Month, this yoga class is free and open to the UM community.

All week long, share how you stay fit on Instagram and attend the #HealthyCampus Week events to be entered to win a $100 Target gift card or a Fitbit Activity tracker. Be sure to tag @UMiamiWellness with #HealthyCampus and #FoundMyFit. As a bonus, attending all three events and posting on Instagram earns you five entries.

The Partnership for a Healthier America works with the private sector and First Lady Michelle Obama, PHA honorary chair, to ensure the health of the nation’s youth and end childhood obesity. By brokering commitments with colleges and universities, the Healthier Campus Initiative helps campuses adopt guidelines around food and nutrition, physical activity, and programming.

“This is the third year of UM’s collaboration with Partnership for a Healthier America and the University has made great strides to make our campus a healthier one,” says Scott Levin, executive director of the Herbert Wellness Center. “From providing healthier food and beverage services at on-campus dining venues to encouraging physical activity and movement through facilities and programs on campus, every UM partner is committed to helping students, faculty, and staff make healthier choices that will ensure their personal and professional success.”

To learn more about #HealthyCampus Week, the events at the Herbert Wellness Center or the week-long raffle, click here.

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Award-Winning Nutritionist, Cookbook Author Shares Her Expertise


Chef Robyn Webb gives hands-on instruction to each participant in her cooking classes, which are designed to get good food on the table quickly and easily.

CORAL GABLES, Fla. (September 7, 2016) Robyn Webb knows healthy cooking. An award-winning cookbook author, nutritionist, and longtime food editor of Diabetes Forecast magazine, Webb has extensive experience in the fields of nutrition, culinary arts, and business. In addition to her immense success in the health and nutrition community, Webb still finds the time to teach instructional cooking classes at the Patti and Allan Herbert Wellness Center.

“What’s not to love about the Herbert Wellness Center,” says an enthusiastic Webb. “The facility is well-equipped, fun to come to, but most of all, it’s the supportive staff and my eager students who keep me coming back.”

Growing up in the hotel industry exposed Webb to cooking at a very young age. By 12 years old she had a deep passion for health, nutrition, and culinary arts. And not just making cookies, Webb clarifies.

“Because of health problems within my family, most notably diabetes,” says Webb, “I learned early on about the importance of a balanced, healthful approach to eating.”

When it was time to choose a major in college, Webb combined all of her passions and began studying nutrition. She holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in nutrition from Florida State University and Syracuse University, respectively. Merging her interests, she applied science and culinary arts to one long and rewarding vocation as a culinary nutritionist.

Webb’s more than 25-year career has seen ups and downs, but she continued to pursue her dream, now owning a culinary and nutrition company, Robyn Webb Associates. The master chef has been profiled by and written for several major media outlets, including CNN, Food Network, ESPN, Discovery Channel, and the Miami Herald, to name a few.

After expanding her business from Washington, D.C., to Miami, Webb began teaching at the Herbert Wellness Center, sharing her expertise and inspiring the UM community to eat smart and well.

“In my classes, I teach real life skills,” says Webb. “You’ll learn the absolute best and necessary cooking techniques that you’ll have for the rest of your life, whether you are a beginner or well advanced.”

Those who enroll in the Herbert Wellness Center’s cooking classes will learn how to re-create Webb’s ideas easily in their own kitchens. Webb’s goal for participants: to quit their reliance on take-out and restaurant dining. A study by the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health found that individuals who regularly cook meals at home eat healthier and consume fewer calories than those who cook less.

Webb is leading three instructional cooking series this semester as well as two single classes. Each class teaches participants timesaving techniques and basic cooking skills designed to make simple and easy meals quickly. All of Webb’s cooking classes are open to both members and non-members of the facility, including the general public. Registration for all cooking classes and series is open now and available online or by calling the sales office at 305-284-5433 Monday through Friday from 7:30 a.m. to 8 p.m.

The Best of International Cuisine (Tuscan and Thai)
Saturday, September 17 and  24
11 a.m. – 1 p.m.

Chocolate, Chocolate, Chocolate
Wednesday, September 28
6:30 – 8:30 p.m.

The Best of International Cuisine (Paris and Tapa Party)
Wednesday, October 19 and Tuesday, October 25
6:30 – 8:30 p.m.

30 Minutes or Less
Monday, October 24
6:30 – 8:30 p.m.

The Best Thanksgiving
Wednesday, November 9 and 16
6:30 – 8:30 p.m.

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Be Smoke Free in September

BSF - HorizontalQuitting smoking can be a challenging process, but with the aid of group classes led by a certified tobacco treatment specialist individuals can get the support and tools necessary to become tobacco free. The University of Miami’s award-winning BeSmokeFree program is offering group classes for people interested in quitting smoking.

Classes are offered in six-week intervals throughout the year, with upcoming sessions beginning on Wednesday, September 21 at the Coral Gables campus, and Tuesday, September 20 and Thursday, September 22 at the Miller School of Medicine campus. Click here for more information and to view a class schedule. This free benefit is available to UM employees, students, and members of the community. It is sponsored by the AHEC Tobacco Program of the University of Miami, the Florida Department of Health, and Tobacco Free Florida.

For more information or to register, call 305-243-7606 or email Mohammad Asad at [email protected].


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