Lakewood, N.J., March 14, 2019—Georgian Court University will host its Eighth Annual Wellness Expo on Saturday, March 23, 2019 from 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. This free event is open to the public, rain or shine, and will be held in the Casino Auditorium on the GCU campus.
The Wellness Expo is considered a day of celebrating and promoting physical, mental, and spiritual health. It will feature more than 50 local and regional wellness exhibitors and vendors offering eco-friendly products, organic food, aromatherapy oils, and much more. There will also be raffles, free lectures, and workshops on yoga, qigong, weight loss, and many other wellness-oriented topics. Other presentations will encompass subjects such as acupressure, Ayurveda, and nutrition.
Chair of the Department of Holistic Health and Exercise Science and Associate Professor Dr. Sachiko Komagata explains that the inaugural Wellness Expo was held in 2012 as a recruitment event. She collaborated with Tracey Saliski ’10, ’12, a student in the M.A. in Holistic Health Studies program. After Ms. Saliski graduated, Dr. Komagata enlisted the help of student volunteers to continue to run the event annually. She continues to coordinate volunteers and service learners and recruit vendors and speakers for the Wellness Expo.
Wellness Expo Underscores Mercy Core Values
Dr. Komagata believes that GCU’s five Mercy core values are evident throughout the Wellness Expo.
“You will see how respectful our vendors, speakers, and visitors are of one another. You will see all our volunteers and service learners giving service to the community through this event. I value the integrity of each vendor and practitioner who joins our event,” says Dr. Komagata. “Justice is reflected through this inclusive event of all ages, all religions, and all orientations and preferences without judgment. Compassion is everywhere on the event floor.”
The Wellness Expo exemplifies what the GCU experience strives to imbue in its student body, she adds. Plus, there are issues and topics at the event that are of special concern to millennials.
Millennials face many pressures at home and school that can affect inner motivation and their willingness to expand their horizons, she explains. Dr. Komagata hopes the Wellness Expo will help students listen to their inner voices and teach them to “re-value human touch, human-to-human direct contact as opposed to constant online connections.”
Dr. Komagata also believes wellness should be a universal concern, as the individual is inseparable from his or her environment, and every course of action influences other people and the world. Events like the Wellness Expo reinforce the sense of connectedness and community that is a hallmark of a GCU education, she notes.
Dr. Komagata extends special thanks to Trader Joe’s for their annual contributions to the Wellness Expo and to Organic Valley and Nordic Naturals for their support in 2019, and she expresses gratitude to all the local and regional vendors who make the Wellness Expo possible year after year.
Story contributed by GCU English major alumna Heidi V. Chaya ’17
Founded in 1908 and sponsored by the Sisters of Mercy, Georgian Court University is Central and South Jersey’s only Catholic university. GCU is a comprehensive, coeducational university with a strong liberal arts core and a historic special concern for women. As a forward-thinking university that supports diversity and academic excellence, Georgian Court expands possibility for more than 2,400 students of all faiths and backgrounds in 35 undergraduate majors and 10+ graduate programs. In 2018, GCU was named a Best College for Your Money by Money Magazine. GCU has also been recognized by U.S. News & World Report and Colleges of Distinction and was one of about 100 colleges nationwide that made Phi Theta Kappa’s 2018 Transfer Honor Roll. The main campus is located in Lakewood, New Jersey, on the picturesque former George Jay Gould estate, a National Historic Landmark. Georgian Court, which is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education, also serves students at other locations, such as GCU at Hazlet, GCU at Cumberland, and through multiple online certificate and degree programs.