Spring quarter has finally come, bringing with it warmer temperatures, sunny skies and a fresh round of school-related anxiety. Students looking to beat the stress factor this season can check out the Wellness Wednesday series presented at the ARC.
The Wellness Wednesday program is a series of workshops presented by Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) together with the Fitness and Wellness center on campus. Workshops take place Wednesday evenings throughout the quarter and are free to all UC Davis students. The majority of the workshops are led by professionals from CAPS, said Kendra Densmore, Fitness and Wellness coordinator for Campus Recreation.
Wellness Wednesdays first got started as a way for CAPS to extend its services to students in a less intimidating environment, said Dr. Dorje Jennette, Stress and Wellness Clinic coordinator for CAPS.
“One of the nationwide struggles in the area of student mental health is the fact that there are some students who never access the help that would benefit them,” Jennette said. “Just setting foot in CAPS can be a difficult step for some students.… Wellness Wednesday workshops give students easy and comfortable access to the tools that can make life better.“
The series covers a range of wellness topics with workshops dedicated to issues such as eating healthier, sleeping better and dealing with school-related pressures.
Jennette said the workshop themes are chosen through intensive collaboration between CAPS and the Fitness and Wellness Center.
“Every summer [both departments] meet to develop long-term strategies for meeting student needs,” he said. “We sometimes try to link the topics with groups offered by the Stress and Wellness Clinic at CAPS so that the workshops can serve as a free sample for students who may want to benefit from more extensive wellness programs.“
UC Davis student Corinne Elling attended a workshop last quarter and said she found the experience very beneficial.
“The workshop I attended was during finals and was focused on beating test anxiety,” said Elling, a senior animal science major.
“The environment was really laid-back and comfortable. We didn’t strictly stick to test anxiety but also talked about other stress-related issues that students were dealing with.… Overall it was pretty helpful.“
Jennette said that the workshops for this quarter will introduce some new topics that students will find particularly relevant.
“This year, the top-ranking sources of stress became money and the economy, prompting us to schedule our Apr. 8 workshop How Not to Get Strung Out about Finances,” he said. “It’s important for students to be aware of economic stress because it has the potential to snowball into additional problems.“
The Wellness Wednesday series begins tonight with Sex in the Dark, where students will have the opportunity to ask health educators anonymous questions about sexual activity. The workshop begins at 5 p.m. in meeting room 1. For more information about this quarter’s workshop schedule, students can visit caps.ucdavis.edu.
ERICA LEE can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.