From the Hilbert Wellness Center – Stay Healthy on Winter Break

From the Hilbert College Wellness Center
by Kirsten Falcone, RN

Keep it “The Most Wonderful Time of the Year”:
How to Stay Healthy on Winter Break!

holiday-1It’s mid-December, and you’re looking forward to your semester break. Congratulations! But, because of the considerable stress most students endure at the end of the semester, they are often more susceptible to illness during the holidays. It is a bummer to be sick during the best time of the year. Here are some tips to help you fight off holiday illness:

  1. Maintain proper hygiene by washing hands frequently, avoiding touching your face, and covering your sneezes and coughs.
  2. Drink enough water. Try to drink at least 64 to 96 ounces (or more) per day or the equivalent of four to six 16-ounce bottles of water, or eight to 12 8-ounce glasses of water. Another way to measure is to drink 50 to 100 percent of your weight number in ounces. For example, if you weigh 150 lbs., drink 75 to 150 ounces of water every day.
  3. Manage your stress by not over-scheduling, sticking to a budget for gifts and entertainment, and avoiding negativity, e.g., watching too much TV news, letting a negative relative influence you, negative self-talk.
  4. Catch up on your sleep by going to bed at the same time each night. After all, you won’t have to study for any tests! Try to get at least seven to nine hours of sleep each night.
  5. Stay warm and dry, and dress in layers.
  6. Eat healthfully, and avoid too many sweets. It is okay to take only one cookie or to save room for your favorite dessert, and forego having a slice of each one. Also, when you are consuming a large meal, eat your veggies first.
  7. Exercise wisely. It might be safe to go for a walk each day, but then again, there could be ice or snow in your way. Use proper footwear, or exercise indoors. Even in the winter months, exercise is important to maintain a healthy body and brain, and it keeps your immune system strong.
  8. Don’t smoke. Smoking exacerbates respiratory illnesses, and it lowers resistance to illness and disease. If you smoke, it is pertinent to your long-term health to quit now. You will never regret that decision!
  9. Be wise when drinking alcohol. Drinking alcohol is generally not healthful. In fact, the only alcohol recognized as beneficial is one glass (five ounces) of red wine per day for women (two for men). If you do happen to drink beyond what is considered healthful, here are some guidelines to follow: One drink per hour is all your liver can metabolize. In order to maintain fluid levels, drink eight ounces of water per hour also. (In addition, this will help ward off a hangover the next day.) Don’t binge drink, which is defined by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) as imbibing five or more drinks for men, or four or more drinks for women, in a two-hour period.
  10. Down time. Make certain this involves praying, listening to music you enjoy, thinking positive thoughts, a hobby you love, and/or spending time with someone you enjoy.
  11. Be a blessing to others. Remember, holiday time is not all about you. The more you give of yourself, the more blessed and healthy you will be. So go caroling, visit an old friend or a nursing home, smile at and hug your negative relatives, and go to church. Do something good for someone else. Spiritual health and physical health are not two separate entities; they complement each other.

For more information on managing your health during the holidays, visit these Web sites:

CDC Centers for Disease Control and Prevention:

National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA):

The Wellness Center wishes you a very healthy and happy Holiday Season and New Year!

Don’t Let Deadlines Make You Sick: How to Manage Stress

From the Hilbert College Wellness Center
by Kirsten Falcone, RN

manage your stress

It’s that time of the year again. School projects are in full swing, and finals are on the horizon. Many students are stressed, and most are losing sleep. Some have caught a “bug” and are now feeling behind. Stress is, according to, “a specific response by the body to a stimulus, as fear or pain, that disturbs or interferes with the normal physiological equilibrium of an organism.” But, according to, it is more simply “what you feel when you have to handle more than you are used to [handling].” Does that sound familiar? If so, read on.

While some stress can be a good thing, did you know stress also plays a role in most illness? That is because when we are constantly stressed, an overabundance of epinephrine (a.k.a. adrenaline) and cortisol (stress hormones) prevent many bodily systems, including the immune system, from functioning at full capacity. Even busy college students can take the time to benefit from some key lifestyle changes in order to ward off the effects of stress. Some of the ways you can lower stress are:

Get enough sleep. Go to bed at the same time every night, and sleep at least seven to nine hours.
(For more information on sleep, read a recent Wellness Center article here:

Make a list each day, and put the most important items at the top. Check them off as you go.

Don’t skip meals, and keep healthy snacks, like fresh fruits and vegetables and low-sugar granola bars in your backpack. Conversely, don’t overeat or load up on junk food. Give your body the fuel it needs.

Drink enough water. This can range from eight 8-ounce glasses per day to an ounce for every pound you weigh. Drinking enough water will also help drive off the munchies.

Stay away from alcohol and drugs, and stop smoking. These put even more stress on your body by lowering your immune response.

Exercise. Take a brisk walk around campus twice, or work out in the campus recreation center. Do this at least three times per week. Look for any special programs that may be open to all students.

Humor yourself. Find the humor in situations. Subscribe to a joke page on social media. Ask your friends if they know any jokes. There is scientific evidence that making yourself smile actually increases your happiness. It is true that laughter is often the best medicine.

Talk to a good friend or counselor. Bottled-up emotions come out in other ways. Venting with a friend also helps your friend connect with you.

Some other ways to manage stress are, in no particular order:


Reading for leisure

Crafting, or following a hobby

Breathing exercises


Guided imagery

Progressive muscle relaxation

Positive thinking

Singing or playing uplifting music

Volunteering in the community

Caring for a pet

Relaxation time

Taking a nap

Worship/Reading the Bible


Bathing or swimming


For more information, check out these sources:

CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention):


Mayo Clinic, Healthy Lifestyle Stress Management:

Mayo Clinic, Stress Management In-Depth:


The BEST from Step Out Buffalo – Dec. 9


  • Be the Gift Giver You Want to See in the World – Whether you’re shopping for friends, family, coworkers, and/or your beloved pets, make sure the gifts you give don’t totally suck. There are a plethora of holiday markets happening all over town including the Holiday Pop-Up Shops at Resurgence Brewery and Thin Man, A City of Buffalo Artists Market at the gorgeous Ellicott Square Building, and the 9th Annual Last Minute Panic Sale at the Western New York Book Arts Center. Trust us, don’t be *that* person who gives terrible gifts. Use these one-of-a-kind shopping opportunities to 1) check out some cool new places and 2) get great gifts for everyone on your list…including you. #treatyoself2016. Read more on the holiday markets happening this month at com/guide-buffalo-holiday-markets-2016
  • Embrace the First Snowfall –  Weatherman says we can expect snowfall to hit us in the coming weeks…and we’re actually kind of excited. Buffalo’s most infamous trait is also one of its prettiest, and unlike other cities that forget how to function in the colder months the snow makes Buffalo comes alive. It’s like Popeye and spinach but with snow. Ice skating, hockey, curling, sledding, skiing, snowboarding, walking through winter wonderlands, ice bikes…which are exactly what they sound like. Figure out a way to get out and enjoy Buffalo’s first snowfall, then take a zillion photos and upload them to Instagram using #hashtagstepoutbuffalo so we can show ’em off. Read more on winter inspiration and the best photos taken in WNY at
  • Be One of the First to Eat at Casa Azul – Chef Victor Parra Gonzalez has finally brought his amazing, authentic Mexican talents into the City *and* done so at prices that start at just $2.50. Say whaaaa.Call it a 2016 miracle. Casa Azul focuses on not one, not two, but EIGHT different techniques for tacos plus casa-made tortillas (!), tortas on casa-made bread (!!), and seven different beverages that are indigenous to Mexico including horchata, tres leches and pineapple tepache (!!!!!!!!!!!). If your stomach isn’t growling rn you’re lying. We want to go to there. Read more on Casa Azul at com/buffalos-new-mexican-taqueria-casa-azul
  • Win Free Stuff – Yes, you read that correctly. We at Step Out Buffalo are firm believers in giving away free stuff. Like, good free stuff. All the time. And we pretty much do it on a weekly basis. Check out our homepage, Facebook, and Instagram (@stepoutbuffalo) for daily and weekly contests where we give away things like Escape Room parties, shopping sprees, gift certificates, full-day boat rentals, concert tickets, murder mystery dinners, pig roasts, cycling classes, and literally so many other things that it would take forever to list them out. And we want to give it to ~YOU~. What can we say, we like you, we really really like you ❤ Read more on Step Out Buffalo giveaways at com/category/giveaways

From the Hilbert College Wellness Center: How to Avoid the Freshman 15

From The Hilbert College Wellness Center

by Kirsten Falcone, RN

How to Avoid the Freshman 15:
Eating Healthfully at the Campus Cafeteria

freshman_15Dorm food, historically, has carried with it a reputation of flourishing in fat, salt and starch, thereby placing extra pounds onto unsuspecting freshman. Hence, the term “freshman 15” was coined. Indeed, a quick look at some cafeteria menus would seem to confirm this notorious reputation. Chicken fingers, French fries, onion rings, hot dogs, grilled cheese, etc. are all rife with fat.

But wait! There’s more! Now there are ways students can eat healthfully in the campus cafeteria. According to Jessica Lively, Director of Food Services at Hilbert, there are several ways conscientious Hilbert students can increase nutritional content and lessen consequences.

The Hilbert College Cafeteria offers a daily menu of quick, traditional food. And, yes, the food selection is usually along the lines of large-crowd pleasers, such as scrambled eggs, bacon, and muffins for breakfast, hot dogs, chili, and “junk plate” for lunch, and meatloaf, pizza and barbecued chicken for dinner. But, did you know that you can eat healthful items on a regular basis, also?

The first thing that comes to mind is the salad bar. The salad bar is stocked with two kinds of lettuce (refreshed several times per day), onto which can be added a multiple assortment of vegetables, fruit, cheese, and more. During a recent visit to the dining hall, I noted these healthful choices: Mesclun and romaine lettuce, peas, broccoli, sliced cucumbers, tomatoes, olives, red and green bell peppers, spinach, mushrooms, carrots, garbanzo beans, cauliflower, hard boiled eggs, ham strips, mixed fruit, onions, banana peppers, cottage cheese, shredded cheddar, and more. Also available was pasta salad and fruit-flavored yogurt. There were 13 kinds of salad dressing, including oil and vinegar.

Now, even though the salad bar is among the best places to find proper nutrition, there are some guidelines to follow. Stay tuned.

The next thing Lively pointed out was a new system she is using, involving meal tickets. If someone chooses to go this route, he or she is given a breakfast, lunch or dinner ticket with items to be circled. Examples of choices on these tickets are omelets for breakfast, turkey avocado sandwiches for lunch, and a grilled chicken dinner. These tickets are sent to the short-order cook and are usually ready in five to 10 minutes, according to Lively. Also on these tickets, students can make requests, such as substitutions, side dishes, and omissions. In addition, they can choose whole grain bread, spinach wrap, what to have in their omelet, and more.

For students with dietary restrictions and allergies, Lively says to contact her for an individual dietary assessment and plan. “Usually I ask the student to come and sit down with me, and I go through what their needs are and what we can do for them.”

With so many choices at the cafeteria, what is a student to do? Here are a few guidelines:

  1. Drink a glass of water before you eat. Chances are, like most busy people, you are a bit dehydrated. Drinking water will hydrate and energize you, and it will make you less likely to overdo it calorie-wise. Then choose skim or 1% milk, unsweetened iced tea, or water instead of pop. High-caloric beverages are the stumbling block for many diets, because people don’t think of them as having calories. The truth is that the beverage actually can contain a large percentage of the meal’s calories.
  2. Get to the cafeteria before the big rush so that you can order meals in a timely manner with the meal tickets. Lively says noon and 6:00 p.m. are the heaviest times. If you can get there a half hour early, you will have your special order in less time.
  3. When using the meal tickets, the most healthful items include:
    1. For Breakfast: The Veggie Lovers’ Omelet light on the cheese (and you can write that in on your ticket), whole wheat toast, the Healthy Hilbert and Veggie Hawk egg sandwiches, the Skinny Wrap with a spinach tortilla (which you can write on the ticket, as well), orange juice and skim milk. Breakfast is still the most important meal of the day. Don’t skip it. You will consequently eat more at lunch and dinner to compensate.
    2. For Lunch: The Turkey Club sandwich, the Grilled Chicken sandwich, the Turkey Avocado sandwich, the Grilled Chicken wrap, and the Roast Veggie Wrap. It is important to note that you want them light on the mayo.
    3. For Dinner: The Grilled Chicken Wrap, the Roasted Veggie Wrap, and especially the Grilled Chicken Dinner.
  4. Choose to eat from the salad bar a few times per week, perhaps for lunch every day. The lettuce is changed regularly, so it is always fresh. One of the best guidelines for the salad bar is don’t stack your plate too high. Forego the macaroni salad in favor of veggies and protein items. Protein items include meat and hard-boiled eggs. Cheese also has protein, but you should use it sparingly, since it is usually fattening. It is true that the biggest mistake dieters make at the salad bar is loading up on dressing. Be conscientious about how much dressing you use. Oil and vinegar, Balsamic Vinaigrette, Fat Free Raspberry Vinaigrette, and Salsa are the best choices at Hilbert Cafeteria. Use only two tablespoons, if possible.
  5. Eat the vegetables on your plate before you eat the main course. If you run out of room in your stomach because your “eyes were bigger than your stomach,” then you will be ahead of Joe Student, who ate his chicken fingers, but didn’t have room for his carrots. (And, remember, potato chips and French fries are not considered vegetables!)
  6. If you accidentally took too much food, don’t be afraid to eat only half. Nobody at college is looking over your shoulder to make sure you cleaned your plate.
  7. Give yourself enough time to eat. The common recommendation is to allow 20 minutes or more for your stomach to send the signal to your brain that it is full. This means you need to budget your time well, so that you can actually sit down and eat, instead of running to class, high-caloric muffin or fried-chicken-fingers-to-go in hand.
  8. Change your mindset. The campus cafeteria is not an all-you-can-eat restaurant that you visit once or twice per year. Choose to eat less. Worry about your waistline instead of getting the most from your already-spent room and board payment.
  9. Use moderation. Finally, we all know that many of us live for fattening foods. If that is you, you don’t have to give them up entirely. Just eat them in moderation. For many people, that may mean saving dessert for one day a week. For others it means eating only half of what you used to eat.


For more information on choosing healthfully at the campus cafeteria, visit these Web sites:

MedLine Plus, Food Guide Plate:

WebMD, Freshman 15:, Nutrition 101:

Huffington Post, Salad Dressings:

News & Notes – Dec. 6

— Hilbert’s Director of Multicultural Affairs & Social Justice Initiatives, Ahyana King, was a presenter at the National Conference on Student Leadership in Orlando.  Her presentation was titled: Launching Leading Ladies. Below is a description of her presentation.

While more women attend college than ever before, and women make up more than 51 percent of the U.S. population, women are still struggling to launch into roles of leadership on campus and in their post-collegiate professional lives. This workshop reveals ways to create campus environments that lay the foundation for launching females into leadership roles. Topics include mentoring and sponsoring, involving and supporting alumni, women-centered work and conversations from women’s history month, as well as supporting students as they overcome the discrimination that often comes with being a woman who desires to lead.

—  Professor of Political Science Dr. Andrew Kolin’s new book “Political Economy of Labor Repression”  has been nominated for two book awards.  The Philip Taft Labor History Book Award, which is offered by the International Labor Research School at Cornell University, in cooperation with the Labor and Working Class History Association.  The second nomination is for the Lemkin Book Award sponsored by Notre Dame University.

— Hilbert professor, Dr. Megan Witzleben, recently moderated a panel on Social Architecture: Forming Victorian Life at the Social Victorians 2016 North American Victorian Studies Association (NAVSA) Conference in Phoenix.

— Hilbert English Professor Herb Kauderer recently had three book reviews published in Speculative Poetry Book Reviews on the SFPA website, and excerpted in Star*Line magazine.  His review of Sacrificial Nights by Bruce Boston & Alessandro Manzettti, and his review of What Strange Miracles by James Brush appear at , while his review of the Nostrovia! Winning Moon Facts by Bob Schofield appears at

Professor Kauderer had two poems appear in the British magazine BSFA Focus #66 for Summer 2016 and actually published October 27.  Apparently Britain has a more interesting calendar than the US.  The poems are “All the Way Down” and “after the cancer”.  The first poem is a reprint from professor Kauderer’s first collection of poetry Olives: A Jar Full of Small Pokes published in print in October 1995, and as an ebook in October 2015.

—  Below is the link for the December edition of Mission Monthly, featuring “No-Gift Christmas,” “Rediscovering Christmas,” “Chaplain’s Corner,” and “Franciscan Funnies.” Thank you to Rachel Wozniak and Fr. Jud Weiksnar for your contributions!

December Mission Monthly

Hawk Eyes – Dec. 2

Important upcoming events from the Office of Mission Integration and Campus Ministrylive-nativity


Time Management is Key

The last couple of weeks of the semester can be extremely stressful.  Here are some tips to help you stay focused and complete those last assignments, papers and projects.

  • Unplug – now is the time to focus, so turn off your social media and cell phone!
  • Find a quiet place that is away from family and friends to get your work done.
  • Bring along a healthy snack and a water bottle.
  • Take breaks – a brisk walk or taking time to stretch will help you regain your focus.
  • Reward yourself. After you complete an assignment or project – take time to be proud of what you accomplished!

Resources on Campus

If you need someone to look over your paper or presentation, stop by the Academic Services Center or the Library.  Many students often look to their friends for assistance, but remember that everyone is extremely busy at this time of the year.  Professional staff members are here to help and support you.


Important Upcoming Dates

December 2 – Wellness Session, 4:00 pm – 5:30 pm, Hafner Conference Room

Christmas Around the World, 6:30 pm – 8:30 pm, Katherine 1

December 4 – Sunday Night Mass, 7:30 pm – 8:00 pm, St. Clare Chapel

December 5 – Hire-A-Hawk, 10:30 am – 12:30 pm, Bogel Front Foyer

Ornament Decoration, 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm, Trinity Lobby

December 6 – E-Tone Workshop, 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm, Career Development Center

December 7 – Mass, 12:30 pm – 1:00 pm, St. Clare Chapel

Relaxing in the Lounge, 7:00 pm – 8:00 pm, St. Joe’s First Floor

December 8 – Holidaze, 12:00 pm – 3:00 pm, West Herr Atrium

Paws for Stress Relief, 6:00 pm – 7:00 pm, 2nd Floor Lounge

December 11 – Children’s Christmas Party, 2:00 pm – 4:00 pm, Hafner Gym