February 3, 2014

Fountain Newsletter

Information about retirement plans for Whitman employees

The IRS has announced the dollar limitations on retirement plans for 2014. For Whitman employees, your combined saving in the matching and supplemental accounts can be up to $17,500. If you are 50 or older by the end of this year, you are also eligible for catch-up contributions of an additional $5,500, or $23,000 total.

The start of the year is a good time to reassess your savings and retirement goals. You can make changes to the amount of income you are deferring to your retirement savings account at any time, and these changes will take effect with the next pay period. Election changes should be forwarded to the Human Resources office. Email hr@whitman.edu or stop by the Human Resources Office in Memorial and we can help you verify your current elections.

You can also meet with TIAA CREF Account Representative Michael Williamson to plan an investment overview meeting during his monthly visit to Walla Walla. To schedule an appointment with him, contact Jessica Stevens at 206-529 2619 or jstevens@tiaa-cref.org.

Staff news brief

Director of Debate Kevin Kuswa was recently honored as Coach of the Year at the Val A. Browning Round Robin, hosted by Weber State University in Ogden, Utah.

Kuswa was nominated for the award by another coach, and then a variety of coaches from college policy debate teams throughout the western states voted to make him the recipient.

Contra dance in Reid's Young Ballroom this week

Looking for an opportunity to dance? Whitman's monthly contra dance event will take place on Wednesday, Feb. 5 at 7 p.m. in the Reid Campus Center's Young Ballroom. Come learn how to contra dance with Whitman dad Penn Fix, the father of Louise Fix '14, and then test out your new moves to the music of Frog Hollow.

No dancing experience is necessary, and the event is free and open to the public.

Whitman Wellness

Contributed by Fitness Facilities Director Michele Hanford

A Step in The Right Direction

Question: Why would an intelligent adult want to repeatedly step up and down on a step or bench? Answer: Because it's good for their mind, body and soul.

Step Aerobics is a great form of low-impact exercise that can be adapted for any individual and can be performed at low, moderate or high intensity depending upon the situation. If you can walk up a flight of steps, then you're qualified to perform Step Aerobics!

Participants step up and back down in a steady rhythm, utilizing the muscles of the lower body - muscles of the hip (glutes,) thighs (hamstrings and quadriceps,) and the lower leg (calves). These muscles are the big ones, so they require more blood flow to fire. This increase in blood demand means the heart must step up its game, resulting in an elevated heart rate, which is the goal of aerobic or cardio training.

An elevated heart rate for even 10 minutes per day will strengthen your heart, clean out your muscles and - as my grandma used to say - help you "gather your scatters" (i.e. it clears your mind to focus with exercise).

You are probably starting to catch on that, depending upon the height of the step, the pace of the steps and the duration of the exercise session, this can be a very effective way to get some cardio in. And because you are standing and stepping, you are also working your core muscles, meaning that your whole body is engaged in the workout. If you really want to have some fun, add a light set of hand weights to this routine and now you've involved your arm muscles.

Even better, Step Aerobics is gentler then running and some studies suggest the impact is equal to or less then walking. That, and it's a heck of a lot of fun!

Campus Events

7th Annual Winter Student Art Salon

January 20, 2014 to February 8, 2014 - Sheehan Gallery

The 7th Annual Winter Student Art salon runs from Jan. 20 - Feb. 8 at Sheehan Gallery.

Visiting Writers Reading Series: Jess Walter

February 6, 2014 from 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. - Kimball Theater

Visiting Writers Reading Series: Join Jess Walter, author of eight books and a New York Times #1 bestseller.

Parting Shot

By Matt Banderas, photographer/communications officer

Meghan White '14 helps the Women's Basketball team hold on to their ranking as third best in Div III.

On her way to a double-double (points and rebounds), Meghan White '14 helps the Women's Basketball team hold on to their ranking as third best in Div III.