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#MindMatters Pokémon GO Health Walk promotes well-being and fun

September 2, 2016

Sporting their best Pokémon gear and ready to catch ‘em all, a group of enthusiastic students trekked through campus Wednesday as part of Cal State LA’s first #MindMatters Pokémon GO Health Walk.

The walk began at the Golden Eagle statue, where spirited trainers rallied students to complete the nearly 10,000 step walk—and catch Pokémon.

Before the start of the walk, President William A. Covino and First Lady Debbie Covino mixed and mingled with Pokémon aficionados. The couple reminded students of the importance of inner well-being. Making time for fun and healthy activities is important for academic success.

“Physical well-being and inner well-being go hand in hand,” Covino said as students geared up for the walk. “We’re real excited about [the health walk] and we’re glad so many people are participating.”

The Pokémon GO Health Walk, which leveraged the appeal of the wildly popular game, was organized by the Mind Matters initiative, in collaboration with the Center for Student Involvement. Mind Matters provides resources and programs to help students navigate the demands of academic excellence, family responsibilities, and jobs.

Cynthia Alvarez, a student organizer of the walk, said: “The Mind Matters Pokémon GO Health Walk gave students the opportunity to play a very beloved game while at the same time, being active and meeting new friends. The walk was a success because students connected and mingled with each other, even after the event was over.”

The walk was also an opportunity to remind students of the resources available to help, Debbie Covino said. Throughout the year, Mind Matters offers various activities, including a video series, therapy dogs, and guided mediation. Professional counseling is provided through the Student Health Center. The Mind Matters speakers’ series has included lectures by Los Angeles Times columnist Steve Lopez.

Photo: Cal State LA students participating in the #MindMatters Pokémon GO Health Walk. (Credit: J. Emilio Flores/Cal State LA)

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Cal State LA is a university dedicated to engagement, service, and the public good. Founded in 1947, the University serves more than 27,000 students and 247,000 distinguished alumni, who are as diverse as the city we serve. Located in the heart of Los Angeles, Cal State LA has long been recognized as an engine of economic and social mobility. Led by an award-winning faculty, the University offers nationally recognized programs in science, the arts, business, criminal justice, engineering, nursing, education and the humanities.

Cal State LA is home to the critically-acclaimed Luckman Fine Arts Complex, Pat Brown Institute for Public Affairs, Hertzberg-Davis Forensic Science Center, Hydrogen Research and Fueling Facility, Billie Jean King Sports Complex, TV, Film and Media Center and the Center for Engagement, Service, and the Public Good. For more information, visit