Things seen and overheard around the region last month, compiled by reporter Mike Lewis:
‘We need caring people’
“We don’t need more technological gimmicks to monitor our fitness efforts. We need caring people to help other people, one at a time, to develop an individual program that works for them.”
— Joseph “Jake” Jacobs, health and physical education instructor at St. John’s Catholic Prep in Buckeystown, Md., and an adjunct professor at McDaniel College in Westminster, Md., and Penn State Mont Alto
Independence Day history, by the numbers
27: Different official flags used in U.S. history (only the number of stars changed each time)
56: Signers of the Declaration of Independence
1785: Year of the oldest Fourth of July parade, held in Bristol, R.I.
1941: Year that Congress made Independence Day a paid federal holiday
1960: Year the current U.S. flag design was chosen
Median property values
• $306,100: Frederick County, Md.
• $215,300: Jefferson County, W.Va.
• $198,900: Washington County, Md.
• $174,400: Franklin County, Pa.
• $168,900: Morgan County, W.Va.
• $163,800: Berkeley County, W.Va.
• $151,700: Fulton County, Pa.
• $118,800: Allegany County, Md.
— U.S. Census estimates, 2016
“Our biggest charge this year, for our department of business development and working with our Economic Development Commission, is going to be partnerships, internally and externally. … You’re going to see us out and about a lot more this year. We’re going to be visiting a lot of businesses one on one, maybe partnering with some of our EDC (Economic Development Commission board members, some of our elected officials, even other department heads.”
— Susan Small, a business leader with the Washington County Department of Business Development, said the department will work on that team approach moving forward.
Force for good
“I love the entrepreneurial adventure. But I’m also an idealist, and I believe business should be a force for good.”
— Gary Skulnik, chief executive officer of Neighborhood Sun, which is signing up subscribers for a community solar project near Williamsport, Md.
Free massages at the office?
Companies are broadening their employee health and wellness programs, according to a survey by OfficeTeam, a Robert Half company.
According to an article in EHSToday, 66 percent of human resources managers reported that their companies have broadened health and wellness options in the past five years. And 89 percent also said their company supports worker health and wellness goals.
The HR managers, according to the magazine, also reported the most innovative ways companies are focusing on health and wellness in the workplace, including:
• Paying employees extra money if they don’t check work email while on vacation
• Offering onsite exercise, meditation, yoga and healthy cooking classes
• Providing free massages
• Having a nurse’s department in the office
• Giving workers fitness tracking devices
• Offering onsite personal trainers