October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month

October has always been my favorite month.  Maybe because I love fall colors, the changing seasons, cool nights with bonfires, and football (and marching bands !).  Maybe it’s because my birthday is in October.  And my wedding anniversary is in October, and we’re celebrating 20 years together this year.  (Okay, I admit that wasn’t very smart; I only get one bouquet of flowers a year from my husband instead of two since my birthday and anniversary are only 4 days apart).

PinkRibbonLLTwo years ago, on my anniversary, I got a diagnosis of breast cancer.  Not the kind of news one is hoping for, but I was lucky in that it was diagnosed early, through a routine screening.  I have no family history of breast cancer.  Both grandmothers lived well into their nineties, and my mother into her seventies.

When I share my story with people, the response I usually get is, “Oh, I need to schedule a mammogram!  I’m overdue!”

As October begins, I want to remind you all that October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month.   National Breast Cancer Awareness Month (NBCAM) is a collaboration of national public service organizations, professional medical associations and government agencies that work together to promote breast cancer awareness, share information on the disease and provide greater access to services.  The American Cancer Society tells us that when breast cancer is detected early, in the localized stage, the 5-year relative survival rate is 100%, and that 1 in 8 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in her lifetime.

Consider creating your own Early Detection Plan that includes self-exams & clinical breast exams performed by a qualified nurse or doctor to check for lumps or other physical changes in the breast that may need to be investigated, as well as scheduled mammograms which can detect lumps that cannot be felt.  It is recommended that women 40 and older should have mammograms every 1 or 2 years.  Women who are younger than 40 and have risk factors for breast cancer should ask their healthcare professional whether mammograms are advisable and how often to have them.

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McKinley Offers Flu Shots

Beginning Monday, September 21st, 2015, flu shots will be available 10am-4:30pm, Monday-Friday (see building hours) at McKinley Health Center for benefit eligible Students, State Employees and Retirees. Watch the McKinley Web site for updated information or see the Flu Clinic Events Calendar for other locations that may be added.  UGL, Grainger Library, and Funk ACES Library are a few of the locations where vaccinations will be offered.


Flu shots (influenza vaccine) are available at no charge to all U of I students who have paid the Health Service Fee. A University of Illinois ID card must be presented at the time of service. McKinley Health Center encourages all students to get their flu shot.

State Employees and Retirees*

The seasonal flu shot is also available to benefit eligible State Employees and Retirees. To receive the seasonal vaccination at no charge (must be before Dec. 31st, 2015*):

  • each employee must present his/her health insurance card from a state sponsored health plan, and his/her state ID card.
  • each retiree must present his/her health insurance card from a state sponsored health plan, and another form of ID.

* After Dec. 31st, 2015, flu shots will be available for a $32 charge.


The following individuals are not eligible for a free flu shot, but they may purchase the shot for $32 at McKinley Health Center:

  • extra help
  • academic hourly
  • visiting scholar
  • part time employees who do not participate in the health plan (coverage by one’s spouse/partner does not count)
  • spouses or partners
  • volunteers
  • contractual employees
  • Employees who have opted out of the state insurance plan

CDC recommends a flu vaccination for all individuals 6 months of age or older. This year McKinley is providing an upgraded version of the vaccine which is quadravalent, providing protection against four strains:

  • AChristchurch/16/2010 NIB-74XP (an A/California/07/2009 like virus) (H1N1)
  • A/Switzerland/9715293/2013 NIB-88 (H3N2)
  • B/Phuket/3073/2013
  • B/Brisbane/60/2008

This vaccine contains no Thimerisol or other preservative

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September 10th is National Suicide Awareness Day

September 10th is National suicide awareness day.  The month of September is suicide prevention month….every single day=BOTH

For more information about Suicide Prevention click here.

Kyli Payne Pierce's photo.Kyli Payne Pierce's photo.
Kyli Payne Pierce's photo.Kyli Payne Pierce's photo.

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You too can be GREAT!

What is GREAT?

GREAT guidelines were created to reflect the Library’s and University’s core values.  The GREAT guidelines are a foundation for training, delivery and assessment of Library customer service.

Last month we kicked off our GREAT Customer Service training with a wonderful workshop led by Shirley Stelbrink, from Learning Alliances.  If you missed the workshop there will be other opportunities during the coming year.  A GREAT SWAT Team has been created to provide further training and assistance to divisions and units throughout the library.  The SWAT team will be visiting divisions and units to present an introduction about GREAT and why and how it will be implemented throughout the library.

Customer Service Logog Image

GREAT SWAT Team members:
Jessica LeCrone, Chair
Cindy Ingold
Lucy Moynihan
Zoe Revell
Susan Schnuer
Richard Stokes
Beth Woodard

GREAT Customer Service Guidelines

G – Greet all customers and make them feel welcomed

R – Respect cultural and other personal differences

E – Evaluate and clarify customer’s expectations

A – Address and respond to customer’s needs

T – Thank and verify that needs have been met

The Library, also has some GREAT bookmarks, signs and suggestion cards provided by Sue Searing, AUL for User Services and designed by Lindy Wheatley.  If you or your unit would like some GREAT materials  or meet with the GREAT Swat team please contact Staff Development & Training (training@library.illinois.edu)

For more information about GREAT guidelines go to:


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Wearable Technology to Help You Stay Healthy

Staff Development and Training sponsored a webinar about Wearable Technology.  It was really interesting.  If you were unable to attend or are interested the recording is now available.

Wearable Tech: Websites, Apps & Tech to Help You and Your Patrons Stay Healthy With Kira Smith 

Everywhere you go you see someone wearing a band, bracelet or watch that can help track some aspect of their health. In this webinar we’ll examine websites, apps and wearable devices that promote good health. We’ll look at places where you can go for reliable health information, both on the web and on your phone. This webinar will also show you how you can use the web, apps and wearables to monitor:

  • – exercise
  • – nutrition
  • – medication
  • – children’s health
  • – mental health

We’ll also take a look at how wearables in particular fit into libraries now and in the future.

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Beat The Winter Blues





Do you tend to feel blue during the holidays? Do you have less energy in the winter? These symptoms are quite common for many people. The winter holidays can produce stress and anxiety. You may be alone or mourning the loss of a loved one. You may not celebrate the main stream holiday and thus feel left out of all the hustle and bustle of the season. Or you may simply be more tired because of the shorter days and less sunlight.

It is not uncommon to feel this way during the winter months, especially in the northern hemisphere. As a matter of fact, in 1982 doctors identified a disease called Seasonal Affective Disorder or SAD. “SAD is an extreme form of the ‘winter blues,’ depression that occurs at the same time each year, bringing lethargy and curtailing normal functioning…. Research suggests that SAD may affect 11 million people in the U.S. each year and that an additional 25 million suffer a milder form that is indeed called the winter blues.” Retrieved from http://www.webmd.com/depression/understanding-seasonal-affective-disorder-basics; December 10, 2014.

Whether you are officially diagnosed with SAD or simply feeling the winter blues, there are several things you can do to alleviate symptoms. The following web sites provide helpful hints for overcoming seasonal depression or holiday stress.



If you need additional help please be sure to check out the resources available from the Faculty Staff Assistance Program (FSAP). “The staff of the FSAP is dedicated to providing quality, confidential assistance to employees and their families who may be experiencing difficulties that impact their lives.” http://fsap.illinois.edu/

In addition you may want to also check out the University Wellness Center web page at http://www.campusrec.illinois.edu/wellnesscenter/. It has links to events, services and programs, and a nice section on dimensions of wellness which includes emotional and spiritual wellness.
Please have a healthy and happy holiday break!

Your colleagues from the Wellness Committee

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Zero Calorie Apps for the Holidays!

We have a guest blogger today, Jessica LeCrone.  Jessica works in the Undergraduate Library and has wanted to be a runner for years. After many false starts, she hopes to get going on that (and will use a handy fitness app to help) as a New Year’s resolution. In the meantime, she “walks like a runner” with Leslie Sansone’s Walk at Home DVDs and also enjoys cooking and playing with her two daughters.

Here’s Jessica!

Jessica in her first ever color run !

Jessica in her first ever color run !

The holiday season is officially upon us, and some of us are already looking ahead to next year, specifically to fitness-related resolutions. But if you’re more of an in-the-now kind of person, you may be wondering about how to stay fit and keep holiday weight gain at bay. The good news is that technology is here to help!

Here are some free (or quite inexpensive) apps that you can download to your smartphone or i-device to help you increase your fitness (and hopefully decrease your chances of weight gain) over the next few weeks:

  1. MyFitnessPal (http://www.myfitnesspal.com/, free)

This is a combination nutrition and exercise tracker, which you can use as an app on your smartphone or online at www.myfitnesspal.com. You can connect with your Facebook profile or an email address, and once you get set up, MyFitnessPal is super easy to use. Based on your input, MyFitnessPal will create a target daily calorie goal for you (or you can set your own goals), and then all you have to do is log what you eat. MyFitnessPal’s food database contains over 4 million foods, plus you have the option of importing your own foods and recipes. Although the biggest focus for MyFitnessPal is counting calories, you can also track your exercise, and your calorie allotment for the day will adjust accordingly. If you have a fitness tracking device, such as a Fitbit, or use an exercise tracking app, like MapMyFitness, you can link them to your MyFitnessPal account so that your exercise is logged automatically!

  1. Get Running (http://splendid-things.co.uk/getrunning/, free)

This app is basically a Couch-to-5K running plan, which works on the iPhone, iPod Touch, and Android smartphones. Get Running provides you with human voice (her name is Claire!) instructions during each exercise session, and can be used alongside whatever music player you like to use (the built-in iTunes player, Spotify, Pandora, etc.) – Claire will just break in during your song to tell you what to do next. This is a great app for those among us who have not done much (or any) running in the past, but would like to. Each session builds on the last, so that in nine weeks you can go from a strictly walking-only routine to running a 5K! You can also redo or skip sessions if you’d like to go along at a slower or faster pace than the app.

  1. MapMyRun (http://www.mapmyrun.com/app/, free)

MapMyRun can be used with both iPhone and Android, and it uses the built-in GPS device in your smartphone to, you guessed it, map your run. You can also map your walk, hike, ride, and walk you take with your dog, all for free! MapMyRun allows you to record the details of your workout, such as how long, how far, and how fast you went, as well as your pace and the elevation of your run. MapMyRun can save this data for you so that you have a comprehensive workout history at your fingertips!

  1. Power Walk (https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/power-walk/id487659511?mt=8, $1.99)

For those out there who aren’t quite ready for running a 5K, but would like to build up to a power walking routine, this is the app for you! Power Walk gradually builds up your fitness level from a 20 minute walk to a 60 minute power walk over the course of 12 weeks. This app has an optional GPS tracker, as well as a journal and goal-setting area. Like Get Running, Power Walk will work alongside your music player, so that you can listen to your own music and still get walking cues from the app. Power Walk is available for the iPhone, iPod Touch, and Android smartphones.

For more fitness apps, check out this Healthline article on the best fitness apps of 2014. Here’s to a fabulously fit holiday season!

Thanks Jessica!  If you have a topic that you would like to share please contact Zoe, revell@illinois.edu

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