Creating a healthy campus

March 19, 2018 | Campus Life, Health

Making mental health a priority


Going to university is a major life event —right up there with becoming a parent, choosing a partner or moving to another part of the world. While flexing your academic muscles can and should be challenging, it’s important to know how to take care of yourself during the process, and what to do if things start to feel too challenging.

Changing Minds: Creating a healthy campus is about putting power in the hands of students so they are more informed about their own mental health and what to do if they need support,” says Catherine Davis-Herbert, executive director of Student Affairs. “This campaign is about changing perspectives on what it means to be healthy in a way that will shift our institutional culture. It’s about recognizing that human beings are complex, and that taking care of our mental health is just as important as taking care of our physical health.”

Changing Minds brings together resources for students across the university, including counselling, tutoring, career services, wellness animals, fitness opportunities, financial support, and more.

But services are just one half of the equation.The other is providing structured, safe and supportive training opportunities – like the MyHealth online course and The Inquiring Mind workshops – to help students understand the basics about their physical and mental health (and how the two are connected), how to build resiliency (and rebuild it), and when, how and why to access services.

The Inquiring Mind

Spend a few hours learning more about mental health and how to support yourself and others. You'll walk away with tools you can use for the rest of your life. Workshops are offered all year at different times. Students can register for the workshop through MacEwanWorks or by dropping by the Student Affairs office in 7-103A.

“This campaign is an invitation,” says Catherine. “It’s not just about pushing information out to students, it’s about building community, inviting them into a conversation, and encouraging them to take an active role in their own mental health.”

The skills students build during this process have big implications.

“Our students are rooted in community — they have families and relationships of all kinds that extend far beyond MacEwan — and the more they take the knowledge they gain out there, the more likely we are to break old stigma and assumptions.”

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