Buckeye Wellness — a team from the College of Nursing that is part of a campus-wide health and wellness initiative — held its first farmer’s market at the Martha Morehouse Medical Plaza on Friday.
Wellness Program Manager Lauren Battista said the group co-sponsored the event with the Wexner Medical Center to carry on the tradition started by Nutrition Services in 2015 and 2016.
Battista said the farmer’s market ran as a pilot program to test the success of opening in the morning. In addition to being able to purchase fresh produce, visitors could buy healthy breakfast options from 9 to 11 a.m., and healthy lunch options from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
The team is lead by Bernadette Melnyk, Ohio State’s first Chief Wellness Officer and Dean of the College of Nursing, and consists of 500 faculty and staff members. Students also can participate through internship opportunities.
“I think the most rewarding part of my role as Ohio State’s first Chief Wellness Officer is seeing the improvements that we have made in health and well-being for our Buckeye family,” Melnyk said. “It’s really a privilege for me to work across this big public university and improve population well-being.”
Battista said they would love to see more student involvement on the team.
In addition to hosting farmer’s markets, Melnyk said Buckeye Wellness also promotes health through educational and nutritional programming as well as physical activities such as dance, Zumba and yoga classes.
The stated goal of Buckeye Wellness is to make healthy behaviors the default behaviors for members of the Ohio State community.
“Culture eats strategy for breakfast, lunch and dinner,” Melnyk said. “Without the culture of well-being, people aren’t going to engage consistently in healthy behaviors.”
There will be another Farmer’s Market located behind the building at 660 Ackerman Road from 9 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. on Sept. 13.