The Power of Play

The Health and Wellness Summit is finally here! 

You’re invited to join Health and Wellness Services to learn how fun and play can improve your health, creativity and relationships as an adult. 

This free event is open to all CU Boulder students, staff and faculty.

While there will be a number of presentations available at this year’s summit, here are five you absolutely should attend.

See the full presentation schedule and register online

1. Stress is a Laughing Matter: Using Humor as a Coping Strategy

Presented by: Paul Osincup
Date: Tuesday, Oct. 11 at 11 a.m. (CASE Auditorium)
Keynote speaker

When we’re stressed, people often say things like “you need to laugh it off” or “have a sense of humor about it”... which is great… except nobody ever tells you how to do that. In this hilarious and high-energy keynote presentation, Paul Osincup will share evidence-based strategies for honing your sense of humor into an intentional tool to help you reduce stress and boost your overall well-being and performance. 

2. Schedules for Self, School and Social

Presented by: Brianna Rennie
Date: Tuesday, Oct. 11 at 2:30 p.m. (CASE Auditorium)

Are you looking to optimize your schedule to balance self-care, school and social commitments this year? Join Disability Services and academic coaches for a free, hands-on workshop! During this session, you’ll have the opportunity to actively plan our two weeks of your upcoming schedule while learning healthy ways to prioritize yourself, your classes and your social goals.

​3. Creativity + Spontaneity + Mystery = Laughter

Presented by: Bradford Wilder​
Date: Wednesday, Oct. 12 at 3 p.m. (CASE Auditorium)
Keynote speaker

Join Bradford Wilder for an imaginative, funny and outlandish improv session. Just imagine this: You and your family are at a theme park. You all decide to try out a new ride. Much to your surprise, this ride is different. Incomparable. You laugh nervously together and get on. Much to your delight and surprise, it's not at all what you thought. Come and give the ride a try!

4. Who is allowed to play? A conversation about access to play and its impact on well-being

Presented by:  Ben Ototivo
Date: Thursday, Oct. 13 at 2p.m. (Zoom)

While we know play can provide tremendous benefit to our well-being and mental health, we do not all have equal access to play. There are a number of barriers to play that communities can face, including a lack of time, lack of safe space or the policing of play. Join Ben Ototivo, a mental health provider on campus, to learn about the nuances of who has access to play and how we can create communities that foster equity in play.

5. What makes things funny?

Presented by: Pete McGraw
Date: Friday, Oct. 14 at 10 a.m. (UMC 235)
Keynote speaker

Peter McGraw is a behavioral economist, professional speaker, CU Boulder professor and expert in the interdisciplinary fields of judgment, emotion and choice. His research has answered questions, such as “How do feelings affect the ways people spend money?,” “Can people feel happy and sad at the same time?,” and, “Why does the TSA suck?” As the founder of the Humor Research Lab, much of his work examines the antecedents and consequences of humor. Join Peter for an entertaining and inspiring lesson on how we can all use humor to solve problems, craft powerful solutions and create better communities. 

BONUS: Attend Take Care Street Fair

Presented by: Health and Wellness Services, New Student and Family Programs
Date: Friday, Oct. 14 at 1 p.m. (Visual Arts Complex Plaza)

Join Health and Wellness Services for a free, interactive fair during Family Weekend on Friday, Oct. 14! This year’s Take Care Street Fair will feature a variety of activities that are open to students, staff, faculty and families, including:

  • Free t-shirts for students to attend Saturday's white out game
  • Acupuncture and massage
  • Trivia, games and prizes
  • Therapy dogs

  • Obstacle course 
  • Nutrition information 
  • Micro mobility and safety demos
  • Peer Wellness Coaching 

  • Skin imager for UV damage
  • Succulent planting
  • Physical therapy and injury prevention demos

Learn more about the Take Care Street Fair

Additional activities

Free entry to the Rec Center

All CU students, staff and faculty can enjoy free entry and group fitness classes at the Rec Center during the week of the Health and Wellness Summit (Oct. 11 to 14).

Buff OneCard required.

Free flu shots at Wardenburg

All CU students, staff and faculty can stop by Wardenburg Health Center from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. during the week of the Health and Wellness Summit to receive a free flu shot.

*Free flu shots are only available to staff and faculty from Oct. 11 to 14. Students can receive a free flu shot throughout the semester.