Saturday, June 2 is National Trails Day! There are multiple activities that many people enjoy while on the trails including hiking, biking, bird watching, geocaching, and horseback riding. Which activity will you choose to celebrate this day?
The Fargo-Moorhead area is a great place to explore. It is covered in trails! While many of these trails aren’t your traditional hiking trails, you can still enjoy them! Some places you may want to check out include Gooseberry Mound Park and M.B. Johnson Park. Check out the links below to find some trails and parks near you!
Classes begin on August 21st for MSUM students. What better way to add some excitement to this day than to see the first extreme solar eclipse in Fargo-Moorhead in over thirty years? As exciting as this event may be, we all must take precautions to keep our eyes safe. It is very tempting to look directly at the eclipse. However, the eclipse can cause permanent eye damage if you look directly at it, even if it is just for a second. It’s important to wear special glasses made specifically for viewing an eclipse. Please do not use any other types of sunglasses! If you are purchasing your own pair of eclipse glasses, make sure they are certified.
The MSUM Planetarium will be having glasses available at their viewing on campus. Join them on August 21st from 11:30a until 2p in the G3 parking lot (corner of 6th Ave S. and 11th St. S). They will have the glasses as well as special telescopes for all to use and view the eclipse safely! If you are unable to attend in person, check out the live stream of the eclipse on their Facebook page Department of Physics and Astronomy.
The F-M area will be able to experience a partial eclipse. About 80 percent of the sun will be blocked from view. Don’t miss out on this rare opportunity! And don’t forget to be safe!
Nursing assistants are a huge part in healthcare! Nurse aides, orderlies, and geriatric aides are other names associated with this occupation. Nursing assistants work under registered nurses, licensed practical nurses, plus other medical staff. The duties of nursing assistants seem endless! Some duties include bathing and feeding as well as assisting with other patient needs. They also pass on information regarding their patients to the supervising nurse. Nursing assistants spend a lot of time with their patients and often build wonderful relationships with them!
Some work settings that may employ nursing assistants include hospitals, clinics, home health agencies, nursing homes, and many more. Requirements to become a nursing assistant vary. Most require a high school diploma or equivalent. Training also varies as it can be offered at vocational schools, community colleges, geriatric facilities, or by the employer.
The work that nursing assistants do is not always appreciated enough! That is why June 15-22 is Nursing Assistant Week! Although they should be appreciated regularly, take these next few days to give an extra special thanks for the work that nursing assistants do!
We can all agree that air is an important part in our everyday lives. Without it, there is no life. What do we do when it starts to cause more harm than good? Education is a start! May is National Clean Air Month and the purpose is to educate people about the affects air quality can have on our lives. Clean air has been a hot topic for years as pollution increases and air quality decreases. Certain amounts of oxygen, carbon dioxide, and nitrogen come together to create clean air. It does not include pollutants or allergens.
It’s important that we understand what clean air is and what is not clean air. Poor quality air causes harm to all living things. It affects plants, bodies of water, and animals. It also causes cancer and serious respiratory disorders such as bronchitis and worsens symptoms of those with asthma. Other health conditions caused by air pollution include nausea, difficulty breathing, skin irritation, birth defects, developmental delays, compromised immune systems, and the list could go on. Low quality air affects the entire body!
Currently, about 39% of people living in the United States are living in poor air quality areas. Do you think that percentage is high? It is, but good news! This percentage is lower than last year! Our country has been working hard to improve air quality thanks to many factors including carpooling, walking, biking, or taking the bus to work; decreasing the output of pollutants from factories; recycling; and so many more. The Clean Air Act was established in 1970 and has created the base to our efforts towards clean air. Many decisions in the government that involve air quality are influenced by the Clean Air Act. Since 1970, there has been an increase in energy use, economy, and miles driven. You would think that air quality would get worse due to these factors, but thanks to the Clean Air Act, air has actually improved in quality!
Having clean air to breathe is vital for good health. Some places in our country need more work, but our efforts to improve the quality of the air that we breathe is working! Let’s continue to work toward a clean environment! Check out the following link to look at the rankings for cleanest and most polluted cities in the United States and see if you can find where Fargo-Moorhead area ranks!
Florence Nightingale is an important figure in the world of nursing and healthcare. She was born in May of 1820 and belonged to a prosperous British family. From a young age, she believed her purpose was to become a nurse, administering aid to the poor and the ill. Her parents were unsupportive of her career decision and were disgruntled by her refusal to settle down and marry a man of social affluence. Florence wasn’t distracted from her goal and received her nursing degree at the Lutheran Hospital of Pastor Fliedner in Kaiserwerth, Germany.
Florence worked as a nurse in a hospital at Constantinople during the Crimean war in 1853 and worked to improve on the unsanitary and inhumane living conditions of the wounded soldiers there. She tended to their wounds and illnesses during every time of the day, earning her the nickname “the Lady with the Lamp.” Once the war was over, Florence returned home to the praise of the public, earning awards and monetary prizes from the Queen and the British government. Throughout the rest of her life, she campaigned for the improvement of health standards and hospital designs, as well as for the reform of professional training for nurses. Florence remains a notary figure today whom many people still consider to be an important role model.
Florence Nightingale survives in our history as an inspired nurse and a compassionate statistician. She changed the world of nursing and will always be remembered as an important figure in healthcare and nursing.
International Nurses Day is celebrated worldwide every May 12, on the anniversary of Florence Nightingale’s birth. It is celebrated to recognize the life-changing contributions nurses make to society. Though mainly commemorated around May 12 each year, IND activities are carried on throughout much of the year by nurses and others. In addition to International Nurses Day, the United States also celebrates National Nurses Week. The first time the suggestion to create this week was in 1953. It failed. It was suggested again in 1954. It failed again. The next time it was suggested to the president was 2 decades later in 1972 when it finally passed. The American government also decided to honor Nightingale by finishing off a week of awareness on her birthday.
Some of the goals of these two events are to improve the image of nurses while also influencing healthcare policies around the world. One of the easiest ways to show your respect and to help these goals is to say thank you to a nurse you know or meet.
This Saturday there is going to be a series of marches and protests occurring in 358 cities in the United States and over 500 world wide. The March for Science is the first event of it’s kind. It is a call for support from all students, science-based careers and anyone who benefits from scientific advances (psst that’s everyone). It’s a nonpartisan even that is urging policy makers to look at evidence based practices and scientific data to influence their policies and ruling instead of money.
You can find a city near you here that is holding a march. The Fargo/Moorhead area is holding a large one that is expecting several thousand visitors. Here are some of the missions or goals that the March for Science hopes to achieve.
Evidence-based policy and regulations in the public interest. They wish for policy makers to make decisions not altered by other agendas.
Cutting-edge science education. They believe that a science background isn’t only for a select few, the entire majority of the population should be able to interpret scientific literature.
Diversity and Inclusion in STEM. This comes into play with the previous mission, they wish to have an outreach in education.
Open, honest science and inclusive public outreach. Several policies that have been passed recently have banned or limited the exchange of scientific literature and dialogue. By restricting access to the newest information, the governmental body is harming it’s people.
Funding for scientific research and its applications. Under the proposed 2018 budget, all scientific bodies with federal funding will see a cut from 10% to 31%. They wish to change so that we are capable of producing more advancements.
In the few months that this has been planned, they have partnered with over 300 different scientific agencies and centers. Here is their page for the MN marches specifically. They have several social media accounts; check them out on Facebook, Twitter,and Instagram.
Take a deep breath, now let it out. The air you just breathed in was probably refreshing at best, tolerable at worst. You might have noticed the onion or tuna you ate, but that was the worst of it. The next time you drink water, look at it. Is it clear? Probably. Is it colorless? Again, most likely. Is there water in your cup? Well duh.
Never before have these two things been at risk before, drinking and breathing, in the human existence time frame. With the help of globalization and a population boom, humans are having a profound effect on the world. We haven’t had to come to terms that it won’t last forever, because we’ve never had to worry about that in the past.
For the first time in human existence, carbon levels have risen above a threshold it has never crossed before. It didn’t just stop there; the current levels of carbon are sitting at 133% of that threshold. This rise in carbon is having an increased effect, often called the Greenhouse Effect. Due to this warming, there are many changes that are taking place in the world.
Professor Wallace recently gave a seminar on climate change here on campus and the effects that it has on human health. In her presentation she introduced us to some interesting points. A warmer world, even by 2 or 3 degrees Celsius shifts the mosquito habitat. More people will be exposed to mosquito borne disease and for longer times; Zika, Yellow Fever, Dengue, West Nile and the list goes on. Currently 3.6 billion are at risk for these diseases. With a temperature increase that number could rise up to 5 billion. Allergies will worsen as their window widens also. Flooding will increase, as will hurricanes and tornadoes.
Some cities have to issue warnings over smog exposure. It is estimated that of the 10 million deaths every year in China, 1 million is caused by pollutants. Exposure to all these new chemicals is wreaking havoc on our bodies and the environment. In addition to this smog exposure, there is an increasing amount of people with other respiratory problems such as asthma. In 2001, 1 in 14 people had asthma. In 2009, 1 in 12 people. That is the most recent number, although the CDC projects that as many as 1 in 10 people have asthma today.
The goal of Earth Day is to bring awareness to all these issues. It is trying to create scientifically literate people who will in turn be scientifically literate voters on environmental policies. They aim to change the direction of the world towards more green energy, jobs and technology. They hope that by 2020 a majority of the population will be able to understand the scientific literature that affects their lives and environments.
The first Earth Day was held in 1970, and attendance was well above what anyone was expecting. 20 million people, roughly 10% of the population, joined the rallies and marches. It has been one of the most effective awareness days because it is bipartisan for the most part. After that first celebration, the government felt pressured into creating the Environmental Protection Agency and the Clean Air, Clean Water and the Endangered Species Act were also created.
Here are some more facts about Earth Day and our environment.
There is roughly 155 billion pounds of plastic in the ocean and roughly 9 billion is added every year
We will only be able to fill 60% of the world’s water needs by 2030 without better management
The Montreal Protocol signed in 1987 banned many chemicals that were ripping a hole in the ozone. Thanks to that act, the ozone is now healing and the hole is closing.
A convention was held in 1997, the Convention on Biological Diversity. Here many countries around the world pledged that they would work to sustain a diverse biosphere starting in their own countries.
The Renewable Portfolio Standard is an aggressive self- proposed bill in California that says that the state has to get half their energy from renewable sources by 2030. Many states followed, but theirs is the most ambitious.
In 2012 the Earth Day Network planted 1 billion trees to try and bring back forested areas.
Here’s a question for you, let’s see if you can get it. Which of the following are duties, accomplishments or topics based in Public Health?
Creating local food markets
Seeing patients and diagnosing illnesses or disorders
Setting the Minimum Wage
Eradication of smallpox and near eradication of polio
Setting speed Limits
Advises individual treatment options to patients
The answers are local food markets, setting a healthy minimum wage, the eradication of smallpox and speed limits. The other two options, diagnosing illnesses or disorders and advising treatments, may seem like the right answer, but these are actually the duties of healthcare professionals.
Public Health is population focused while healthcare is individual focused. Food markets are encouraged by public health specialists because they give local fresh food instead of fast food which would possibly lower the obesity, type 2 diabetes and heart disease rates for that neighborhood or city. Setting the minimum wage at an appropriate level that it would allow individuals to cover their basic health needs and decrease the amount of money lost in the healthcare system and economy do to poverty. By use of mass vaccination, Public Health specialists were able to make it so that next to no one gets polio and no one gets small pox. Instead of treating, they prevented and averted the continuing disability and death caused by these diseases. Speed limits was a tricky one, but they are set by public health at levels that decrease accidents.
It took hundreds of thousands of generations to get the life expectancy up to about 40 years at the beginning of the 1900’s. Thanks to public health efforts and an advancement in medicine we have added 30 years to that in three generations. While this is great, the United States is ranked 34th for life expectancy. One of the goals of National Public Health Week is to create the healthiest country in just one generation, by 2030.
Now, can you think of some careers or people that you would consider in public health? You can probably think of health educators, either in high school or community level. If you know the fancy term epidemiologist you’re right on the money. Here are some examples of people that this week is honoring.
All High School teachers- By educating the young to graduation, you decrease the chances of poverty
Environmentalists- Having a healthy environment, both for work and play, has a tremendous impact on our overall health
Mental Health and Substance Abuse Counselors- A healthy mind is also included in being considered a healthy person.
Environmental Health Emergency Response Expert- These are the people that coordinate for disaster relief during an earthquake, hurricane, flood or other disaster.
Consumer Safety Officer- These are the people that make sure producers are following the FDA’s regulations and guidelines to ensure that the food supply is health.
Researchers- Be it Vaccine, Treatment, Development or any other kind, they play an essential role in moving our health forward.
There are many more and the list would go on and on if everyone was put on here.
The MSUM wrestling team has excelled this year, but one teammate in particular stood out. Blake Bosch is a senior here at MSUM and he has been put on quite a few good matches this year at the NCAA Championships. He took 2nd place at the Championship this year and won the All-American Honors for the third year in a row. He will be graduate this year, and he leaves a great legacy as a student athlete at MSUM. He is leaving with the second best record in MSUM history (115-35).
The men’s basketball team also has a good season. This was their 4th consecutive 20+ win season, with a record of 24-6. In addition to the that streak, they won their fourth straight NSIC North Division Championship and a third straight NCAA Tournament!
The Women’s Basketball team had a great season this year finishing at 24-5. They won the NSIC Conference Tournament against Southwest State, but sadly lost the NCAA regionals to Central Missouri. This was the team’s first time making it to regionals since 2009. Dragon Women’s Basketball Head Coach, Carla Nelson, celebrated a feat this year. Coach Nelson achieved her 300th team win as a head college basketball coach. Both Men’s and Women’s Basketball had great seasons and we look forward to next year!
The Women’s tennis team is off to a good start with a record of 9-5. Their next match will be at Bemidji State on April 1st. Be sure to show your support by cheering them on!
Dragon Softball season started Tuesday the 28th with the first conference game against Northern State. The team fell to its opponents, but takes on Bemidji State this Saturday in an away game.
This month long observation is recognized in the United States, Canada, and Western Europe. In the U.S. alone there are 2 million cases of self-injury reported annually, mostly among youth. It’s time to end the stigma of self-harm.
Self injury is any deliberate, non-suicidal behavior that inflicts injury on one’s body. Although self injury is not a suicidal behavior if the emotional trauma that causes one to self-harm continues it can lead to suicidal thoughts or actions. People often self harm as a way to confront emotional pain. When most people think of self-harm they often think of cutting, but there are many other forms. Actions such as burning, scratching, consuming harmful products such as bleach, pulling out clumps of hair, bruising, and breaking bones are all forms of self-injury. Self-injury is a coping mechanism and is seen as another way to deal with the emotional pain that many experience, but have difficulty handling or processing. Self-injury occurs across all ages, genders, races, and beliefs. If you know someone who self injures reach out to them and follow the tips below to do so successfully.
Get angry or show disgust. Negativity alienates and ultimatums only drive the person away from you.
Deny the problem. It’s not the person’s problem or just one of his/her ‘things’. It’s not a fad, social statement or a phase he/she will grow out of.
Hide sharp objects. If the person wants to self-injure, he/she will find a way.
Judge the severity of the injury as an indicator of the level of emotional pain. A severely depressed person might only have scratches instead of cuts.
Assume the person is okay once in treatment. Recovery from self-injury can take months, maybe even years.
Stay calm. Freaking out won’t solve anything. It will just close all lines of communication.
Talk. Be non-judgmentally supportive. Ask “Why are you doing this to yourself?”
Take the problem seriously. It’s not about attention-seeking or a growing pain.
Seek treatment. Accompany the person to the doctor or counselor but don’t be pushy about privacy.
Find the triggers. Focus on the underlying problems rather than just the injury.
Trust the person. Self-injury is just a small part of the person.
It’s time to end the stigma of self-injury and help those who self-injure. Visit the links below for more resources on helping individuals and how to end the stigma.