Spelman College, @SpelmanCollege, invites the Twitterverse to join them from noon to 1 p.m. on November 14 to chat with Spelman alumna, actress and wellness guru AJ Johnson, @TheAJZone, about their decision to dump their sports programs to fuel the "Spelman Wellness Revolution."
So far the move has generated several headlines. Spelman College President Beverly Daniel Tatum cited several reasons behind the move to The New York Times. 'When we studied this early this year, I was startled to see that we really had only 80 student athletes out of 2,100 students, and our program was costing almost $1 million,' she shared.
Given the many reports about black women's overall lack of activity, Tatum decided that Spelman resources would be better used by withdrawing from the N.C.A.A. and redirecting them towards serving the student body as a whole. 'We want our students to become what I call soldiers in the wellness revolution,' Tatum also told The New York Times.
In a special post to The Root, Tatum elaborated on the state of black women's health. "About four out of five African-American women are overweight or obese, and among all children, black girls are most likely to report getting no physical activity in the past week," she wrote. "A National Institutes of Health study found that by the age of 17, more than half of black girls were reporting no leisure-time physical activity at all.
"Poor diet and lack of exercise are literally killing us and shortening the lives of the next generation. We need an intervention -- a wellness revolution!" Tatum added, before tying Spelman's newly-adopted wellness initiative to the same principles that birthed the institution 131 years ago. Back then, literacy itself was tremendously needed; and, today, according to Tatum, so is "wellness literacy."
If you have something to say about the decision or simply want to share the ways in which you are staying healthy, just join @SpelmanCollege from noon-1:00 p.m. tomorrow, November 14, as it engages @TheAJZone and @SpelmanWellness on this very important topic. Do remember to use the hashtag #insidespelman.