Student Wellness Retreat
Educate. Experience. Explore.

The 2016 Student Wellness Retreat will be held April 14-16 at the Hilton Albany. Registration will open in mid January 2016, and more details will be provided then. In the meantime, check out this site for details from this past year’s annual event.

About the 2015 Student Wellness Retreat

Good health is critical to academic success. Come join other Empire State College students from across New York state at the Student Wellness Retreat, April 16-18, 2015, at the Hilton Albany in downtown Albany, N.Y.

Registration is FREE for all students! Some travel grants are available. To apply, check the appropriate box on the registration page. The conference will feature personal wellness coaches, guest lectures and presentations, wellness activities and demonstrations, a health fair, health screenings, and more.

About the Student Wellness Initiative

Your good health is critical to your academic success. Research has shown that adult students leave college for a variety of reasons, but one of the most significant is for personal and family health issues.

Learn more

We are excited to have Olympic Gold Medalist Shawn Johnson as our keynote speaker for 2015!

At 23 years old, American gymnast Shawn Johnson has accomplished a lifetime of achievements that include Olympic Medals, a New York Times best-selling book, a business, a career in broadcast all while recently being accepted as a student into Vanderbilt University.

Johnson’s love of gymnastics started when her parents, hoping to channel the energies of their rambunctious daredevil toddler, enrolled her in classes at the age of three. A few years later, she began practicing with instructor Liang Chow at his training facility in Des Moines. It wasn’t long after Chow began coaching Johnson that he knew she would be a viable Olympics competitor.

Johnson became a member of the U.S. senior team in 2007. She is the 2007 all-around World Champion and 2007 World Champion on floor exercise. As well as being the 2007 U.S. Champion on balance beam and floor exercise, the 2008 U.S. Champion on floor exercise and silver medalist on balance beam, she is a three-time U.S. all-around Champion, winning once as a junior and twice as a senior.

Hundreds of millions of viewers worldwide watched as a 16 year old Johnson won four medals including gold on the balance beam at the 2008 Summer Olympics, which took place in Beijing, China.

Her first book, Shawn Johnson, Olympic Champion-Stories Behind the Smile, was published in January 2009 and in April of that year, Johnson was named the 79th Amateur Athletic Union (AAU) Sullivan Award recipient, one of the United States most prestigious honors in amateur sports. At the age of 17, she became the youngest ever contestant, and subsequently in May of 2009 was crowned champion, of ABC’s 8thseason of “Dancing with the Stars”. Shawn was so popular with the audience that in 2012 she was invited back for “Dancing with the Stars: All Stars” where she again made it to the finale.

In 2010, Nintendo launched Shawn Johnson Wii which was a holiday best seller.

After a two-year hiatus from competitive gymnastics, Shawn returned to training in 2010 in an effort to make the 2012 Olympic Team. Just weeks before Olympic Trials, she was forced to withdraw due to injury and retired from the sport.

In June of 2012, Johnson’s second book Winning Balance: What I’ve Learned So Far About Love, Faith and Living Your Dreams, was published and quickly became a New York Times Best Seller.

In 2014, Johnson launched TheBodyDepartment.com, a site dedicated to offering an outlet where people can talk about body image, wellness, and fitness in a healthy way.

Johnson is a Spokesperson for Nike and continues to design her signature Forever Gold gymnastics attire through Ozone. The leotards are available through select retailers and online.

She is involved in a number of philanthropic activities such as working with animal and children’s charities, working with cancer charities, particularly those that affect women and children, and is a strong advocate of health and wellness initiatives. Shawn is also involved in programs that help build good character amongst youth across the country.

She has also appeared as a contestant on this season of NBC's hit show The Celebrity Apprentice.

The 2014 Student Wellness Retreat was a Success!