News and Announcements

Obesity: What is its impact, and what can be done about it?

March 2, 2010

Regis College panel free and open to the public

One of every four people in the United States is obese. Diabetes, heart disease, certain cancers, arthritis and some skin disorders are all linked to levels of obesity. No matter what region or demographic group, the extent of the problem worsens as people age. But what can we do about it?

Regis College continues its Leadership Series on Health with an informed and probing look at Obesity: A Cultural and Social Perspective Wednesday, November 18th from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m., in the Upper Student Union Lounge.

Media reports have kept research data before the public, along with an array of diets that are ineffective. This panel will discuss the increased risk of illness, disability and death in relation to obesity. The panel will emphasize prevention, nutrition, diet and exercise as well as pre-disposing factors and support systems necessary for successful outcomes.

"This is one problem we can do something about, if we can just come to grips with appropriate lifestyle changes, including diet and exercise," said Mary Jane England, MD, President of Regis College. "But changing behaviors needs community and family support, not just focus on the individual. Neither the menus in school cafeterias nor the broader family attitudes, social norms, and public advertising that encourage unhealthy eating behaviors will change overnight, but the benefits of appropriate weight loss for children, adults, families and society who work on such change together are nothing less than living longer and living better," she said.


  • Karen Voci, MA, Executive Director of Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Foundation


  • Jeffrey S. Geller, MD, A Director and Family Practice Physician, Greater Lawrence Family Health Care
  • Jennifer Sacheck, PhD, Assistant Professor, Friedman School of Nutrition, Tuft’s University
  • Deborah J. Cohan, PhD, Faculty, Department of Sociology, Regis College
  • Laura L. Hayman, PhD, RN FANN, Associate Dean of Research and Professor of Nursing and Health Sciences, University of Massachusetts, Boston.

The Regis College Leadership Series on Health was established in 2007 by President Mary Jane England, MD, in partnership with Harvard Pilgrim Health Care. The unique series of lectures designed to challenge the community to develop new skills to build awareness of contemporary health and wellness issues and learn to effect positive change.

The lectures are free and open to the public. Pre-registration by the Friday prior to each lecture is available, and preferred. Free contact hours are available for nurses and social workers. The series is hosted in partnership with Harvard Pilgrim Health Care. For more information, call 781-768-7120, or Regis College is located at 235 Wellesley St., Weston.

This continuing nursing education activity was approved by the Massachusetts Association of Registered Nurses, Inc., an accredited approver by the American Nurses Credentialing Center’s Commission on Accreditation.

Regis College is a Catholic co-educational community that prepares undergraduate, graduate and continuing education students for engagement and service in a changing world. In the School of Arts and Sciences and the School of Nursing and Health Professions, approximately 1,600 students are enrolled in 24 undergraduate majors; master’s degree programs in education, health product regulation, and nursing, and in communication, leadership and service, and public administration with a strategic focus on health care; and a doctorate in nursing practice. U.S. News and World Report ranks Regis in the top tier of universities with master’s programs in the North. The National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE) lists Regis among benchmarking colleges for the quality of educational experience. The National League of Nursing recently identified Regis College as a Center of Excellence in Nursing Education. The College also provides accredited pre-school and kindergarten programs, and a Life Long Learning Program (LLARC) for retired seniors.

CONTACT: Marjorie Arons-Barron, (617) 969-2707,

Regis College: News and Announcements
News, Announcements
News and Announcements