The Catholic University of America


Fall Events and Reminders: Wellness and ZIMRIDE


By Lisa Wood, interim chief human resources officer, director of employee relations, and equal opportunity officer/Title IX coordinator

As another academic year begins, I want to say welcome back everyone! And as the summer heads into fall, classes begin, and traffic revs up, our thoughts of course turn to walking and driving.

With those two thoughts in mind, I want to talk about two exciting programs that the Office of Human Resources is offering again this year, Wellness and ZIMRIDE.

We have two wellness events coming up. First, Walk Your Way to Fitness is our next wellness event for employees. Early fall is a beautiful time to be outside while you exercise. So to encourage us all to exercise a little more, human resources is again sponsoring a walking program from Sept. 7 through Oct. 31. We will form teams of 10 people each, and each team will track its total number of steps each day. To help track your steps, we will be providing pedometers and walking logs for the first 250 participants. (Yes, that’s right, we are expecting a lot of walkers!) Each team will have a captain, who will report the number of steps each week. The three teams with the highest number of steps will receive some great prizes. The three top individual walkers will receive special prizes as well. So put on your walking shoes and get a team together. The captain of the team should contact the Office of Human Resources at extension 5050 to get started on walking to fitness.

Our own HR team had the second highest number of steps this summer when it participated in a wellness event with American University, Georgetown University, and ARAMARK. Our team, The Holy Walkamoles, walked a total of 1,802,761 steps. Congratulations to Terry Fletcher, Matt Reader, Joe Schiavo, and Delantay Motte for a great job walking.

The second wellness event that everyone should take advantage of is Know Your Numbers, which will be held on Sept. 17. At this event, you can have a health assessment done and get your “numbers,” such as blood pressure, cholesterol, and glucose. There is also a screening for diabetes. All this provides great information for your health care needs. It also provides information for you to participate in SimplyEngaged, a yearlong wellness program for you and your spouse (if you are both current participants in any of CUA’s UnitedHealthcare programs). To get started, you need to register at This Internet forum provides you with a convenient way to view your health care claims online. Once you log in, you will see on the right side of the page a box that says “Health Assessment.” For completing the assessment, you receive a fabulous $75 gift card. Both you and your spouse are eligible to complete the assessment. If you get your health assessment done at the Know Your Numbers event on Sept. 17, your numbers will automatically be uploaded into the UnitedHealthcare assessment for you. You will only need to register online and finish the process to receive your $75 gift card. The card can be used at any number of locations such as Target, Sears, Kohl’s, Barnes and Noble, and CVS. After completing the assessment, you and/or your spouse can participate in online or telephone-based health coaching programs to help you focus on many different areas such as losing weight, quitting smoking, or managing stress. And you can receive additional gift cards for your efforts. Once you complete a targeted activity, you will receive an email notification about how to claim your gift card. It’s easy to Know Your Numbers and be rewarded.

Our second program is ZIMRIDE, a carpool and ride share program for all members of the campus community. I’m going to focus on carpooling and the excellent reasons why we should participate.

REDUCES STRESS — Wouldn’t it be nice to share the driving and have more energy from less stress? And maybe grab a cup of joe and a breakfast burrito while commuting into work a couple of days instead of clutching the steering wheel?

SAVES THE ENVIRONMENT — Fewer cars on the road reduces carbon emissions and improves air quality. It creates less congestion for those driving and a little less dependency on oil.

SAVES MONEY — Carpooling takes money out of your gas tank and puts in your pocket. That way you can buy coffee and breakfast burritos for everyone in the car.

TIME — Most people commute an average of an hour. Save time by using the HOV (High Occupancy Vehicle) and express lanes. Get to work on time!

FUN — You’ll be able to sing along to the radio with someone else for a change, not just yourself.

Commuters can post their route to campus and times typically traveled. ZIMRIDE will match you with others with a similar route. There is also ridesharing for longer trips, typically used by students. These out-of-town trips can be posted to be matched with users who need a ride to the same place or somewhere along that route. These are typically weekend and holiday trips.

For more information, or to start looking for a carpool buddy, go to

Have a great semester and I look forward to waving hello to all the walkers!