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ECU News and Communication Services 1001 E. 5th St. Greenville, NC 27858 (252) 328-6481

Pirates tackling heart disease during February

East Carolina University’s Division of Student Affairs will hold a number of events in February to raise awareness about heart health and heart disease during national Heart Health Month.

ECU Campus Recreation and Wellness will kick off the events with a Heart Health Extravaganza from 4 until 6 p.m. Feb. 2 at the Student Recreation Center. Attendees will have an opportunity to visit healthy stations to learn about stress, heart health, blood pressure and more. All student participants will be entered to win a FitBit wristband activity tracking device.

On Feb. 4 between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m., Campus Wellness staff and students will distribute heart health information across campus. Campus Recreation and Wellness will join Campus Dining staff Feb. 9 and Feb. 12 to teach students about healthy food choices and portion sizes in West End and Todd dining halls.

On Feb. 6, all members of the ECU community will be urged to wear red for National Wear Red Day, as a sign of support for fighting heart disease. All those dressed in red will be asked to gather for a group photo at 12:15 p.m. at the Student Recreation Center.

Shane Stephens

Shane Stephens

“When people wear the red, it’s a reminder that heart disease is a real disease,” said Shane Stephens, assistant director of wellness programs in Campus Recreation and Wellness. “The red will remind us to make the choices we need to make to fight this disease and live longer happier lives.

“Students don’t typically perceive heart disease as being dangerous because they think they are too young,” said Stephens, but the American Heart Association reports that one out of every three women die from heart disease or stroke. It’s still the number one killer in the country.

“We are creating awareness and helping our young women learn that today’s decisions about smoking, food choices and exercise can have positive or negative impacts later in life,” Stephens said.

For additional information about Heart Health Month visit the American Heart Association website (www.heart.org). For more on ECU events and programs, contact Shane Stephens, assistant director of wellness programs, at Stephenssh@ecu.edu or 252-737-4892.

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ECU Hosts 2015 Great Decisions Program

East Carolina University is hosting the Foreign Policy Association’s Great Decisions Program through March 7.

Now in its 12th year in Greenville, the program runs for eight consecutive Saturdays from 10 a.m. to noon in the auditorium of the Rivers West Building. The program started Jan. 17.

Using video lectures from academic and professional experts, the program addresses topics of global significance. The 2015 topics include Russia and the Near Abroad, Privacy and the Digital Age, Sectarianism in the Middle East, India Changes Course, U.S. Policy Toward Africa, Syria’s Refugee Crisis, Human Trafficking in the 21st Century, and Brazil’s Metamorphosis. Each session will run approximately one and a half hours, beginning with an hour-long lecture followed by a discussion period.

ECU students, staff and faculty may attend for free and purchase the program book for $20. The public is invited to attend for a fee of $40 for all eight sessions, which includes membership in the World Affairs Council of Eastern North Carolina. The textbook is an additional $20. The cost for attending an individual session is $8.

A complete schedule of events is posted at http://www.ecu.edu/cs-cas/greatdecisions/greenvilleschedule.cfm.

For additional information, or to register for any or all sessions, visit www.ecu.edu/cs-cas/greatdecisions/home.cfm. For questions, contact Andrew Cartee, in the Office of Continuing Studies, at 252-737-1352, or via email at carteea@ecu.edu.

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Mercer to co-edit series on human enhancement technologies

East Carolina University professor Calvin Mercer has been named co-editor of a new series, “Palgrave Studies in the Future of Humanity and Its Successors.”

Calvin Mercer

Calvin Mercer

The series addresses human enhancement therapies and technologies, applying multiple disciplines to examine an intellectual and cultural movement that advocates the use of emerging technologies including genetic engineering, regenerative medicine, robotics and nanotechnology.

These emerging technologies may enhance desirable human mental and physical abilities while ameliorating human conditions deemed undesirable. Advocates suggest the developments could permit humans to take control of their own evolution and alter the human condition in fundamental ways. Economic, ethical, political, religious, social and other implications of such enhancements are increasingly being discussed.

Sharp disagreements over the social value, morality and feasibility of human enhancement have emerged in early conversations. Mercer said the series will not take an advocacy position. Rather, it will provide a forum for thoughtful debate.

Mercer is an ECU professor of religious studies and director of ECU’s religious studies program. He was the founding chair of the American Academy of Religion Transhumanism and Religion Group, now in its seventh year of successful programs at the annual national meetings. Mercer has co-edited three books and authored several articles on this topic.

His co-editor is Steve Fuller, Auguste Comte Chair in Social Epistemology, Department of Sociology at the University of Warwick.

“The questions and issues addressed in the series play critical roles in our welfare and our future,” Mercer said. “I anticipate that increasingly public policy experts, politicians and political think tanks will take up human enhancement technology. An established and reputable series will be well positioned to contribute to this expanded conversation.”

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Local veteran service experts to convene at ECU

Representatives from the Pitt County Veteran Services Office, the Greenville Veteran Affairs Health Care Center, Region IV for the NC Division of Veterans Affairs and the Greenville Vet Center will present a panel discussion on the Future of Services for Older Veterans in eastern North Carolina at East Carolina University.

The panel presentation, sponsored by the College of Human Ecology’s Office of Healthy Aging Research, Education, and Services (OHARES), will be held in the Green Room of the Croatan Building on the ECU main campus Feb. 6 from Noon until 2 p.m.

The initial panel discussion will run for one hour, with an additional hour set aside for the panelists to discuss potential collaboration opportunities directly with the audience. Research affiliates from OHARES will also be in attendance to discuss possible partnerships at the local and state levels. Refreshments will be served.

For information on the Office of Healthy Aging Research, Education, and Services, contact Director John Kerbs by phone 252-328-5546 or e-mail kerbsj@ecu.edu, or visit the website www.ecu.edu/che/ohares.

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German diplomat to speak on transatlantic relationships

German diplomat Knut Abraham will present “The Transatlantic Link in Times of Crisis” at 4 p.m. Feb. 12 in room 130 of the Rawl building, East Carolina University.

Knut Abraham

     Knut Abraham

Abraham, head of the consular and legal section of the German Embassy in Washington, D.C., will speak about key issues affecting transatlantic relationships. He will focus on issues that affect the relationship between United States and Germany, such as terrorism, Russia/Ukraine and U.S. espionage against Germany.

He is a German lawyer and career diplomat who has served German embassies in the U.S., Bulgaria and Finland. He has also served the German Foreign Office and the Federal Chancellery in Berlin.

Sponsored by the Department of Political Science, the event is free and open to the public. ECU students and faculty interested in current German – U.S. relations are encouraged to attend.

For questions contact Armin Krishnan, Department of Political Science, at krishnana@ecu.edu.

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