Diversity Month: "Resilience can be learned"

1 Jun 2021

The kick-off event with which Diversity Month 2021 opened at LMU focused on the interactions between mental and physical health.

Vice President Francesca Biagini at the kick-off of Diversity Month 2021.

“WeCare@lmu” is the motto of Diversity Month 2021 at LMU. The events organized over the next month are all intended to stimulate greater awareness of the importance of an inclusive and health-sustaining environment that promotes well-being and allows for a sensible balance between work and leisure time. The kick-off event on 18. May 2021 focused on the themes of work-life balance and the interactions between physical and mental health.

“This year, we consciously chose to feature Health as the diversity dimension at LMU. A well balanced approach to life contributes to robust health, and equanimity fosters open-mindedness. Open-mindedness is in turn a key requirement for ground-breaking research, excellent teaching, successful studies, modern administration, and an inclusive ethos based on mutual respect. – And in the midst of a pandemic, it is more vital than ever," said Prof. Dr. Francesca Biagini, LMU Vice President for International Affairs and Diversity, in her opening address.

The Keynote Lecture given by Prof. Dr. Kristina Åkesson (Dean of the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Lund, Sweden) was followed by a Panel Discussion with Prof. Dr. med. Peter Falkai, (Director of the Clinic of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy at the LMU Medical Center) and Prof. Dr. med. Jochen Gensichen (Director of the Institute of General Medicine at the LMU Medical Center), which was chaired by Vice President Biagini.

The medical professionals underlined the importance of the links between physical and psychological health well-being, and provided suggestions on practices that have positive effects on health maintenance. Professor Åkesson stressed the significance of an equable balance between the demands of one’s working life and one’s private life. She also pointed out that an environment in which work and learning are enjoyable experiences should be an essential element of that balance. Professor Falkai emphasized that it is possible to learn how to handle pressures. He defined ‘resilience’ as “the ability to cope with diverse types of stresses.” He went on to say that this ability is not a stable skill. “It’s an aptitude that is subject to change, but it can be actively nurtured.” Jochen Gensichen stated that “people themselves can be their own best medicine, insofar as they can take steps to look after their health”. His own suggestions in this regard centered on physical exercise and proper nutrition: “Both are important for young people too. Can we take the time to cook our own meals? That's something we can all do for our health.”

Diversity Month 2021 has much more to offer on these topics. Over 70 virtual events and activities are planned over the period between 18. May and 30. June 2021.

As part of Diversity Month LMU is also presenting a series of Health Lectures. These online lectures, which will addres medical issues in the areas of early diagnosis of cancers, chidren's health and thromboses,

The next Health Lecture on Early Diagnosis of Cancers takes place on 8. June 2021. the lecture will be given by Prof. Dr. med. Julia Mayerle, Director of the Interdisciplinary Center for Dietetics and Nutrition at the LMU Medical Center.


A recording of the Kick-Off Event on 18. May, subtitled in German, is now availabe on LMUs YouTube Channel. A version subtitled in English will follow.

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59 Min. | 18 May 2021

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