Creating a Wellbeing Campus to Improve Lives in Communities

Mar 23, 2011, 11:07 ET from Gallup, Inc.

University of North Texas, A.T. Still University of Health Sciences, and Texas Christian University named as first Gallup Campus Wellbeing Consortium schools

OMAHA, Neb., March 23, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- A landmark commitment to improving the lives of those who learn and work at colleges and universities began as three distinguished institutions were named inaugural members of the Gallup Campus Wellbeing Consortium. The consortium works to create a new discussion about the wellbeing of the people who learn and work at colleges and universities, and to create a community where people use a common vocabulary about what is right with individuals. These institutions are collectively committed to increasing the wellbeing of all the people on their campus and in the surrounding community.

The University of North Texas, A.T. Still University of Health Sciences, and Texas Christian University were selected from a pool of interested schools based on their outstanding levels of commitment to the project and the powerful impact they are proposing to make on their campus and in their communities. This announcement marks the beginning of a five-year journey for each University to become a wellbeing campus and to help students, faculty, and staff reach thriving levels of wellbeing.  

Wellbeing has long been hard to quantify, but recent research by Nobel-prize-winning scientists including Daniel Kahneman, Joseph Stiglitz, Amartya Sen, and Gallup Scientist James K. Harter, have changed that image. Their work shows the clear and real effects that high wellbeing has on the lives of those who are thriving in their wellbeing. So clear are the outcomes that Fortune 500 CEOs, government officials, and world leaders — including France's Nicolas Sarkozy and England's David Cameron — have begun wellbeing initiatives to improve the lives of their people.

The Gallup Campus Wellbeing Consortium requires a commitment not only from university leaders but also from leaders in the surrounding community. Mayors, school superintendents, and CEOs of the area's largest employers indicated their support for each university's goal to become a renowned wellbeing campus.    

The potential benefits of high wellbeing on campus and in a community are powerful and extend well beyond just an assessment of physical health. Wellbeing incorporates five separate but related elements: Career Wellbeing, Social Wellbeing, Financial Wellbeing, Physical Wellbeing, and Community Wellbeing. Research has shown that high wellbeing has direct links to lower healthcare demands, reduced health insurance costs, higher GPAs, a more engaged student body and workforce, and other positive campus, community, and business outcomes.

"We believe that this consortium will highlight the great programs and services already in place in these universities," stated Timothy D. Hodges, Ph.D., Director of Gallup's Campus Wellbeing Consortium. "We are also interested in discovering effective strategies that institutions can implement to enhance the wellbeing of those who live, learn, and work in these communities." According to Hodges, one important goal of the consortium is to quantify the impact of wellbeing over time. "Will a person be better off two, five, or ten years down the road because they came to learn or work for this institution? Will they be healthier, have more financial security, and be more involved in their community?"

Colleges and universities interested in joining the consortium completed applications in fall 2010, with selected finalists hosting campus visits shortly thereafter. The University of North Texas, A.T. Still University, and Texas Christian University were selected in November 2010 based on several criteria, including the institution's demonstrated commitment to bringing wellbeing to the community; the community's overall commitment to wellbeing; clarity and feasibility of their plans; and the quality of their proposed wellbeing research. The institutions will invite the participation of thousands of students, faculty, and staff members. Additionally, because of the standing of the participating schools in their communities, community members and organizations will benefit from the positive outcomes of increased wellbeing.  

As part of the consortium, each campus will provide students, faculty, and staff access to Gallup's wellbeing assessment and tracking measurement tools. Each participant will receive personalized feedback that will include specific recommendations on how he or she can best improve aspects of their wellbeing. Participants will have access to individual and group action planning tools, campus-specific resources, a wellbeing journal, behavior trending capabilities, and other tools to help individuals and groups make real, behavioral change. On each campus, a wellbeing consortium committee comprised of faculty and staff will integrate the campus' overall results into targeted programs designed to elevate the five essential elements of wellbeing.

Gallup experts will work with the participating campus consortium committees using campus wide reports and aggregated data, to help them implement programs and initiatives to enhance the wellbeing on its campus. The committees will also meet in Omaha in April 2011 to share their campus-specific research designs and wellbeing strategies.

For more information about the program and its goals, please visit

About Gallup

Gallup has studied human nature and behavior for more than 70 years. Gallup's reputation for delivering relevant, timely, and visionary research on what people around the world think and feel is the cornerstone of the organization. Gallup employs many of the world's leading scientists in management, economics, psychology, and sociology, and our consultants assist leaders in identifying and monitoring behavioral economic indicators worldwide. Gallup consultants also help organizations boost organic growth by increasing customer engagement and maximizing employee productivity through measurement tools, coursework, and strategic advisory services. Gallup's 2,000 professionals deliver services at client organizations, through the Web, at Gallup University's campuses, and in 40 offices around the world.

SOURCE Gallup, Inc.