‘Happier, Healthier, Higher Performing’

Luke Ekdahl, Staff Writer

lowLife of a Wildcat is a new organization at Libertyville High School dedicated to informing students on ways to lead a safe and healthy lifestyle.

Its goal is for students to make healthy lifestyle choices so that they can do well in all aspects of their lives. The organization mainly focuses on informing students to make healthy choices surrounding sleep, nutrition/hydration, mood/stress management, and alcohol and drugs.

“The idea behind [Life of a Wildcat] is, no matter where a student is situated, whether they are in theater, or a mathlete, or an athlete, or an artist, whatever, I feel like a large percent of the population, if not all, wants to be awesome at something. And so, I think what oftentimes get missed–even though it seems obvious, is that lifestyle choices are incredibly important,” commented Dr. Brenda Nelson, the Prevention and Wellness Coordinator at LHS, and advisor of Life of a Wildcat.

This organization was originally inspired by John Underwood, an Olympian in steeplechase and professional runner who started a program to help improve the lifestyle of athletes on and off the field.

“[John Underwood] developed a program with these principles–his arena is athletes. He wanted to help young athletes and young people,” commented Dr. Nelson on the origins of the program.

Life of a Wildcat supplies students with information on how to lead a healthy life and encourages students to follow those principles.

“So everyday you just be healthy and perpetuate this image of healthy living,” said LHS senior Megha Adya. I like the initiative. It was nice to help younger kids to find a direction and stay away from drugs and alcohol. I thought that was a really good goal that the club has, so I wanted to be a part of it.”

The organization supplies sports and clubs with information that is intended to be interesting and meaningful to the people in those organizations. Additionally, if a student wants more information outside of a club, they can sign up through a Google form for Life of a Wildcat on the LHS home page under the prevention and wellness tab, or through the QR code to the right, to receive additional content.

“What Life of a Wildcat does, it really works to bring that content into the hands of kids in a way that, hopefully, is meaningful and appealing,” commented Dr. Nelson.

The program is still in its infancy, with mostly seniors being involved, however anyone can fill out the Google form to receive content. Life of a Wildcat is marketed as a lifestyle rather than a club due to the fact that you do not have to receive information from a club or through the organization’s Google form to practice the healthy choices that encompass the program.

“Right now it is just [in] the planning stage, so we are all just trying to figure out how bring this lifestyle to the rest of the school,” commented LHS senior Jenna El Ghatit, who is a part of Life of a Wildcat.

The motto of Life of a Wildcats is “Happier, Healthier, Higher Performing,” which are the goals of the organization. As Dr. Nelson explained, students will use the information provided to them to lead a healthier lifestyle, thus being healthier, happier, and higher performing in many aspects of their lives.