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Campus Rec encouraging GVSU community to unplug from technology, participate in healthy events

  • Students shared reasons why they unplug from technology during the first Unplugged in 2018.
  • Students shared reasons why they unplug from technology during the first Unplugged in 2018.
  • Students shared reasons why they unplug from technology during the first Unplugged in 2018.
  • Students shared reasons why they unplug from technology during the first Unplugged in 2018.

Posted on February 21, 2019

It’s a fact: people spend a lot of time looking at and using their various devices, especially on college campuses while completing school assignments, browsing social media, communicating or completing projects at work.

The Campus Recreation team at Grand Valley is encouraging students, faculty and staff to take a break from technology for one week in an effort to improve their overall health and wellness.

Unplugged will run from February 24-March 2 in conjunction with National Day of Unplugging, which is March 1-2.

Kayla Cupples, assistant director of marketing for Campus Recreation, said the goal of Unplugged is to help the campus community not only become more aware of time and energy spent on technology, but also help people become more connected to each other and the world around them.

“We recognize that technology is extremely beneficial because it helps us connect in ways we never have before while making our lives much simpler. But we want to help the campus community understand the negative impacts that overuse can have on our health, relationships and overall wellbeing,” said Cupples. “Whether it’s putting away the phone, avoiding email during dinner or simply spending less time on social media, the campaign can uniquely meet people where they are.”

Given how ingrained the use of technology is in daily life, Cupples said the expectation is not necessarily that people will completely ignore their devices during Unplugged.

“Campus Recreation wants others to balance their time away from technology with exercising, having meaningful conversations, spending time outdoors, playing sports or anything else that would enhance overall health and wellbeing,” she said. “Research indicates that exercise can improve sleep, decrease feelings of depression, help protect against feelings of anxiety, boost self-confidence and improve focus and productivity."

During Unplugged, Campus Recreation will highlight various programs and events including Club Sports games and tournaments, Intramural Sports registration, snowshoeing, rock climbing, group exercise classes and more.

Other university departments, such as the Art Gallery, Counseling Center, and Campus Dining, will offer activities, such as eating disorder screenings and “looking with intent” art explorations.

For a full list of activities and more information, visit the Unplugged website.