2019-20 Civic Engagement Theme

Living Our Best Lives

According to the 2018 State of American Well-Being study, Ohio ranks 38th among the states on this well-being index. The five elements measured in the study are as follows:

  • Purpose: liking what you do each day and being motivated to achieve your goals;
  • Social: having supportive relationships and love in your life;
  • Financial: managing your economic life to reduce stress and increase security; 
  • Community: liking where you live, feeling safe, and having pride in your community;
  • Physical: having good health and energy to get things done daily.

As these categories suggest, our sense of well-being grows from a complex web of interrelated factors. For the 2019-20 academic year, the Bluffton campus community will explore how we live with wholeness and joy.

Some questions that will shape our campus conversation: how do we understand Ohio’s low ranking on this index? What external conditions may contribute to or detract from a sense of well-being? How does a community’s health enrich and intersect with an an individual’s wholeness and joy? How can the various academic disciplines help individuals and communities find wholeness or well-being? How have the various places that we have called “home” differently supported our own well-being? How can any of us use the strengths we and our communities possess to find a greater sense of well-being and joy?

Geography of Bliss


Summer reading 

The summer reading text for first year students is The Geography of Bliss (One Grump's Search for the Happiest Places in the World) by Eric Weiner. The author describes his travels around the world to learn why people in various countries are highly ranked on the happiness scale. 
>>> author's description

Opening Convocation
Beth Taylor Mack, Ph.D., director for health behavior and wellness for the YMCA national office, is the guest speaker for Opening Convocation on Tuesday, Aug. 27.

Dr. Taylor Mack received her master’s degree in applied psychology from Fairfield University and her doctorate in human development, with a concentration in health promotion, from Marywood University. She leads the YMCA organization in health and wellness programming in the area of healthy living.