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Over 500 participants crossed the finish line for Center for Growing Talent’s first Virtual Wellness Walk/run challenge on June 21st. The Wellness event, which contributes to Center for Growing Talent efforts to attract and develop the next generation of talent on behalf of the produce and floral industries, was the first of its kind. The Center for Growing Talent’s Wellness events are a fun way to give back to our industry, while providing a wellness-inspired networking and team-building experience at a time when we simply cannot gather in person.
Despite the restrictions caused by the COVID 19 pandemic, Center for Growing Talent has not slowed down in its efforts connect with emerging talent. In fact, Center for Growing Talent has been working harder than ever to scale up its outreach to students. So much so that, in just the past five months they’ve engaged and educated 500 students about the meaningful career opportunities in our industry, a four-fold increase over 2019.
Its Career Pathways program has gone virtual, expanding the number of students and also the range of backgrounds now including students in fields of engineering, bio-sciences, research and manufacturing based sciences in addition to those studying agriculture. At a time when universities are closed or otherwise not permitting travel for their students, if we can’t bring students to the industry, it becomes more important than ever that Center for Growing Talent brings the industry to the students.
When Center for Growing Talent staff reach out to students in the coming months, they will be able to speak to programs like the Virtual Wellness Walk Run Challenge as a way to showcase the passionate, dedicated (and healthy competitive spirit!) of the produce and floral industry Our industries’ relationship-based culture and sense of community is incredibly compelling to emerging talent that we are seeking to attract. One of the 562 participants in the event, Quincie Gourley, was a 2017 Career Pathways participant who now works for Taylor Farms. She spoke to the importance of Center for Growing Talent’s program in helping her find her place in the industry and how that influenced her decision to participate in the Walk/Run.
“In 2017, during my third year at Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo, I was selected as a delegate for PMA Fresh Summit’s Center for Growing Talent,” said Gourley. “I had benefited from amazing connections made during my time at the conference, of which I have been able to keep most of those connections today while working in the industry. I truly enjoying giving back to programs and organizations that have helped me get to where I am today. I credit Center for Growing Talent for giving me the opportunity to fall in love with the produce industry, which is why I wanted to support the Wellness Walk/Run. Since the competition, I have registered for my first half marathon, so I was able to use the 30 miles in 30 days as a part of my training to keep me accountable, not to mention being slightly competitive to be one of the first 10 participants to complete 30 miles.”
Center for Growing Talent will announce another Wellness event to take place later this summer. It will be an opportunity for even more members of the industry to come together, promote their individual wellness and that of their their teams, and engage in some friendly competition. Perhaps you can join this next challenge or participate in “micro” Wellness events during the Foodservice: Delivered digital event, happening June 20-24, and secure bragging rights like these Wellness Walk/Run Challenge competitors:
Virtual Wellness Walk/Run Challenge Highlights:
562 total participants representing 46 teams from across the industry.
Sun World International had the largest team, followed by Naturipe Farms and Frieda’s Specialty Produce.
Capespan North America had the highest donations from their teams, which the company matched, followed by Emerald Packaging and Nature Fresh Farms who also matched their teams’ funds.
The most spirited team was Family Tree Farms who created team t-shirts and demonstrated how the event could serve as a fantastic team bonding event, especially while we all socially distance.
Calling all endurance runners, joggers, treadmill lovers, dog walkers, stroller walkers and the like! Center for Growing Talent is inviting you and other members of the produce and floral industry to participate in a 5-week Virtual Wellness Walk/Run! Together, in virtual spirit, we will promote exercise for our families, encourage team building among our colleagues and create a better sense of wellness among ourselves and each other now and into the future.
Whether it’s an early morning stroll before the workday, a lunch break breather to get your kids or furry friends some fresh air, or the desire to hit the pavement to beat your current 5K time – we would like you to join us! Your participation will help our industry in many meaningful ways including support of Center for Growing Talent’s education programs. Plus, every participant will receive a commemorative medal following completion of the event!
We hope you’ll find a fun and safe way to participate and share your experience(s) on social media between May 15th and June 21st.
Please follow local and state social distancing guidelines during your walk or run.
How can you participate?
Walk/Run a 5K
Walk 1 mile
Walk/Run 30 miles in 30 days for a cumulative challenge
Donate in support of other walkers, runners and teams
Here's how it works:
Pick your distance and register any time between May 15, 2020 until June 21, 2020 (first day of Summer!)
Join a team or create a new one! There will be prizes for largest team, most spirited team and team with highest donations raised for Center for Growing Talent’s education programs.
Walk/Run your chosen distance any time between May 15th and June 21st. If you chose the cumulative 30 miles for 30 days challenge you may start immediately following registration to begin accumulating your miles.
For the 30 miles in 30 days participants, click HERE to enter your progress as you accumulate your miles.
For the 5K and 1 mile participants, click HERE to enter your finish time.
Take pictures and short videos to commemorate your walk/run, post them on your Facebook page and use the hashtag #BeWellwithCGT. See more below to find out how you can win prizes!
What’s in it for you?
Largest team wins a prize
Most spirited team wins a prize
Team with the highest donations wins a prize
Team with most company logo wear wins a prize
All participants receive a commemorative medal and custom virtual bib (medals will be sent to home address provided on registration form approximately one month after registering)
First 5 participants to complete the 30 miles for 30 days challenge receives an Amazon gift card
Encourages team building, promotes exercise and well-being for ourselves, families and colleagues while raising funds for Center for Growing Talent’s Education Programs!
Social Media Participation: Want to win some extra cool swag? We’ll want to see you throughout the event so be sure to participate in weekly activities within our Facebook group in order to qualify! Link to join the group will be given with registration confirmation. Use Hashtag #BeWellwithCGT
Center for Growing Talent by PMA raises awareness and educates young people about the produce and floral industries, and career opportunities that exist across the supply chain. It is at times like this that we rely most on talent at every level of our companies and across the supply chain to see us through and drive the recovery. Please consider a tax-deductible contribution for you and your company. We are grateful for your support.
30-Mile Cumulative Challenge Details
Complete 30 miles within 30 days. Here is how it works:
Run/walk your desired daily distance
Track your daily distance in the results page HERE
The Race Director will award prizes to the first 10 finishers to complete the challenge!
Complete one of the distance events and receive this commemorative medal!
Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the medal manufacturing company production has significantly slowed during this time. Medals will be sent out as soon as possible! Thank you for your patience and understanding.
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