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You are cordially invited to the UW Oshkosh

Women’s Wellness and Education Retreat

Friday, Nov. 6, 2020 – Sunday, Nov. 8, 2020

Osthoff Resort in Elkhart Lake, Wis.

Moving Intentionally Through Life’s Transitions


As we travel through our journey in life, we are thrown many curve balls.  Some of those curve balls are pleasant and sweet surprises, while some bring us heartache and grief, and some bring us both.  Often, we are so busy, we don’t even realize that we are grieving a loss – a loss of what we thought life would be, a job loss, a loss of a relationship, a loved one, an empty nest  – until we are encountering other obstacles that we can’t resolve.  In our fall retreat we will focus on how we move with intention through these transitions.  We will be using the book Finding My Intention: A story about hope transforming into purpose after life falls apart, by Shelly Maxwell. 

If you have questions about the program, contact Continuing Education Program Manager Julie Kiefer at or (920) 424-3106.

Shelly Rutz Maxwell, MSW, LCSW, RYT lives and works as a counselor, guest speaker and yoga instructor in Oshkosh, Wisconsin. In college, Shelly worked in outdoor experiential education before moving to St. Louis for graduate school.  Her graduate work specialized in counseling and coping with chronic illness.  Shelly worked for 15 years in Higher Education at both Washington University in St Louis and UW Oshkosh.  In addition to serving as a staff counselor at UWO Counseling Center, she also led multiple initiatives on campus, including training students and staff in responding to students in distress.  She now works for Ascension WI Employee Assistance Program where she continues her clinical practice and provides presentations to companies around the Fox Valley.  In 2018 Shelly completed 200 hours as a registered yoga teacher to celebrate her 20 years of practicing yoga.  She practices and teaches at Inner Sun Yoga Studio.

Finding My Intention is Shelly’s first book detailing a time in her life where she used her professional skills to help navigate the death of her mother and divorce. By sharing her story, Shelly hopes to connect with readers who are going through transition and experiencing grief. Shelly believes that when we tell our stories a healing process occurs which deepens our compassion towards each other and ourselves.



Please note:  This retreat will have a different format than previous retreats.  Instead of a conference style with various breakouts, Shelly will work with us as a group through various exercises as we find our intentions.  Many modalities will be used in instruction including writing, art, and movement. Saturday’s schedule will be less structured.  Breaks and time will be given throughout the day to reflect and work through the material.

Frequently Asked Questions

What will your retreat experience include?
  • A two-night stay at the five-star AAA Four Diamond Osthoff Resort
  • Four healthy yet delicious meals and two snacks
  • Exercise led by certified instructors
  • Educational programming offered by experts
  • 0.8 Continuing Education Units (CEUs) granted by UW Oshkosh
  • Added Bonus: Two hours in the resort’s Aspira Spa on Saturday night
What goals can you accomplish in just one weekend?

Learn more about yourself, along with the science and theory of current/cutting-edge nutrition, fitness and overall health.

  • Quality wellness education to address the dimensions of wellness – not diet schemes.
  • Be with like-minded women on your wellness journey.
  • Unplug, rest, relax, spend time with female family members or friends and meet new women as well.
  • Try new things – foods, exercise options and ways of thinking – to shift your paradigms.
  • Intellectually stimulating – sessions are not dumbed-down, cliché wellness platitudes.
How long has the Women's Wellness and Education Retreat been around?

Women’s Wellness and Education Retreat History

  • Started by the UW Oshkosh Continuing Education department in Fall 2016.
  • The goal of the program is to provide an opportunity for women to receive quality, cutting- edge wellness information in a non-traditional higher education setting.
  • We meet at a resort and enjoy the amenities while learning from our presenters and each other.
  • A wellness book is chosen to read in advance (this is optional) and sessions are planned from the topics of the book.