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Bringing Holistic Wellness to College Health

May 9, 2023

College campuses can be an exciting, yet stressful environment for many students. From academic pressures to financial stressors, it’s no surprise that many students struggle to maintain their physical and mental health during their college years.

Recently, there’s been a growing trend towards bringing a holistic approach to wellness to college campuses. This approach considers many aspects of student well-being and aims to support them in achieving optimal health and well-being. Here’s an example of a “wellness wheel” that illustrates just the interconnectedness of all these aspects of well-being:

Holistic wellness wheel

Graphic courtesy of the University of Nevada, Las Vegas

Let’s dive deeper into how college campuses can lean into a holistic approach to wellness:

Mental Health Support

College can be a challenging time for students, and mental health issues such as depression and anxiety are becoming increasingly common. To support students’ mental health, colleges must provide resources such as counseling services, mental health clinics, and access to mental health professionals. Additionally, college staff should be trained to recognize signs of distress and to refer students to proper resources.

Innovations are also being made in the form of state-of-the-art wellness facilities on campuses, such as the brand-new Well-Being Center at the University of Richmond, which features a Meditation Garden, a Salt Therapy Room, and a Self-Care Resource Center. Sounds amazing, right?!

Physical Health and Fitness

Physical health is a vital component of wellness, and college campuses can provide a variety of resources to support students’ physical well-being. This can include gym facilities, intramural teams, nutrition counseling, and health clinics. In addition to these resources, colleges can also promote healthy lifestyle choices, such as regular exercise, healthy eating, and getting enough sleep. Also, exercise can have a positive impact on mental health, further reinforcing the need for taking a holistic approach to student wellness.

Social Support

Social support is crucial to supporting overall well-being, and colleges can provide a variety of resources to support students’ social connections. This can include allocating greater resources towards inclusive social events, clubs and organizations, and mentorship programs. By fostering a sense of community on campus, students are more likely to feel connected and supported, which can definitely have a positive impact on their overall well-being.

Spiritual Wellness

While not often talked about in a college setting, spiritual wellness is an important component of overall well-being. Colleges can offer resources such as meditation and mindfulness classes, spiritual counseling, and spaces for prayer and reflection. By recognizing the importance of spiritual wellness, colleges can support students in finding meaning and purpose in their lives, which can have a positive impact on their mental and emotional health.

Bringing a holistic approach to wellness to college campuses is not just beneficial for students, but also for the campus community. By addressing all aspects of health, including mental, physical, emotional, and spiritual well-being, colleges can support students in achieving their health and well-being goals. Plus, colleges can create a more supportive and inclusive environment, which benefits students, staff, faculty, and administrators alike.

Integrating data and operations across various university clinics and departments can be a challenge. And even with student health and wellness budgets tightening, our solutions can help your campus work towards comprehensive college health integration.

Interested in learning more about how your campus health solutions can become more integrated and impactful?  Connect with a member of our team.