Stories this week at WFU

DIABETES: THE NEXT OBESITY-RELATED EPIDEMIC – Paul Ribisl, chairman of Wake Forest’s health and exercise science department who has been interested in obesity for more than 25 years, says the next obesity-related epidemic is adult-onset diabetes in children. With this month recognized as American Diabetes Month, he says statistics show an unprecedented 10-fold increase in Type 2 diabetes in children in the past two decades. Ribisl is associate editor of the American College of Sports Medicine’s Health and Fitness Journal, for which he recently wrote a column on the rapid rise in obesity in children. He says modifications in diet and exercise can help counteract the trend. “Unless effective intervention programs are adopted … we will be faced with a serious epidemic of cardiovascular complication in future generations as these obese diabetic children become adults,” he wrote. To arrange an interview with Ribisl, contact Sarah Mansell at or 336-758-5237.

FROM INNER CITY TO IVY LEAGUE – Cedric Jennings, the inspiration for a series of Pulitzer Prize-winning articles and a subsequent book by Ron Suskind, will speak in Wake Forest’s Pugh Auditorium tonight at 8. The book, “A Hope in the Unseen: An American Odyssey from the Inner City to the Ivy League,” is the tale of Jennings’ academic struggles at an inner-city high school and his first year at Brown University. He was brought to Wake Forest by students inspired by Suskind’s book. To arrange coverage, contact the News Service at 336-758-5237.

WAKE FOREST STUDENT TO MEET WITH NATO LEADERS IN PRAGUE – Wake Forest junior Jennifer Harris was among a handful of U.S. college students selected to attend the Prague Atlantic Student Summit (PASS) that ends Nov 23. She and other undergraduate and graduate students from more than 35 NATO and partner countries will discuss the future of NATO and the new security challenges it faces. The students also planned to meet with Czech President Vaclav Havel, Georgia President Eduard Shevardnadze and the heads of state of various former Soviet Republics as well as U.S. officials. Harris has worked in both Latvia and Croatia to develop refugee programs. She will be available for interviews on Nov. 25 and Nov. 26. To arrange an interview, contact Cheryl Walker at or 336-758-5237.

PRINCETON PHILOSOPHER TO DICUSS CONCEPT OF TIME – Sean Kelly, assistant professor of philosophy at Princeton University, will present “Time and Experience” at 4:30 p.m. Nov. 22 in the philosophy library at Wake Forest. Kelly will try to explain how people experience something so intangible as time. To arrange an interview with Kelly, contact the News Service at 336-758-5237.

Holiday Stories

HEALTHY EATING DURING THE HOLIDAYS – The secret to maintaining healthy eating habits during the holidays lies in the answer to one question, says a Wake Forest nutrition expert. “Ask yourself if it’s worth it,” says Gary Miller, an associate professor of health and exercise science. “Save your calories for the foods and drinks that you really enjoy.” Miller suggests finding fat-free or low-calorie ingredients as substitutes in some holiday foods, and cautions against skipping meals prior to a big party, saying that will only encourage overindulgence on higher-calorie finger foods. To arrange an interview with Miller, contact Sarah Mansell at or 336-758-5237.

HOLIDAY ADVERTISING, EARLIER EACH YEAR? – Halloween had hardly ended this year before Christmas decorations were finding their way into stores and holiday carols crept into advertisements. How do consumers respond to the overload of holiday images, and does marketing of holiday shopping start earlier each year? Sheri Bridges, associate professor of business at Wake Forest’s Calloway School of Business and Accountancy, is an expert on advertising and consumer behavior. She can comment on the yearly barrage of holiday promotion. To arrange an interview with Bridges, contact Sarah Mansell at or 336-758-5237.

THINKING OUT LOUD CAN TEACH KIDS ABOUT GETTING, GIVING – As the mad rush of holiday shopping begins, parents should “think out loud” to help children deal with the holiday season’s emphasis on buying things, says Donna Henderson, a Wake Forest counseling professor. “We do this so quickly in our minds, but we need to actually say it to give children a model for their own decision-making,” says Henderson. She says providing a “script” for younger children to use when they want a new toy or article of clothing helps develop their cognitive thinking skills. To arrange an interview with Henderson, contact Cheryl Walker at or 336-758-5237.

WFU CEREMONY TO HIGHLIGHT ADVENT SEASON – The “Advent Festival of Lessons and Carols” will be held in Wait Chapel at 11 a.m. Dec. 3. The free public event features eight lessons and 16 hymns designed to help participants prepare for the coming of Christ. Musical selections for the program range from several diverse backgrounds including French Calvinist, German, Catholic and African-American. To arrange coverage, contact Jacob McConnico at or 336-758-5237.

STUDENTS LIGHT UP CAMPUS FOR THE HOLIDAYS – Students at Wake Forest have planned a community celebration of the holiday season at 8 p.m. Dec. 3 on University Plaza (Quad). The buildings surrounding the plaza will be decorated with white lights and a live evergreen tree will be placed on the Quad. The event will feature an interfaith service, musical performances and time of community fellowship. To arrange coverage of the event, contact the News Service at 336-758-5237.

LOCAL CHILDREN CELEBRATE HOLIDAYS AT WFU – Wake Forest students will be sharing holiday cheer with local children Dec. 4 from 4 – 6 p.m. in Benson University Center, Room 401. Students will help children decorate cookies, sing holiday songs and make crafts. To cover this event, call the News Service at 336-758-5237.

Categories: Arts & Culture, Community, Events, Student, Thrive / Wellbeing