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News Highlights:

  • After-hours telemedicine hotline, online appointment scheduling, and new counseling staff at SDCC
  • Mental Health and Wellbeing Task Force (MHWB) update.
  • Mental health and wellbeing tips, resources and information at WPI

Welcome to the second half of the academic year. On this first day of the course, we wanted to have you in front of you with updates on new services and people here to support you.

Finding connection and support is necessary for us to grow together as a community. The resources and information here are part of a larger, integrated effort that depends on each of us. Lean on each other, reach out and reach out to each other, and ask those around you if they are okay and if they need anything. Be each other’s resources. We ARE WPI. By helping each other build strength and resilience, we will get through this – together.

you were herd

Additional telemedicine services:
You asked about a new way to access mental health support outside of business hours. The new after-hours telemedicine hotline operated by ProtoCall will be operational this week after final testing. You can reach the line outside of SDCC business hours by dialing the main SDCC number: 508-831-5540. If you call this number outside of business hours (5pm to 8am weekdays and weekends) you can speak to a Crisis Advisor via a selection in the Answering Machine menu.

WPI has worked with ProtoCall to fully integrate our support systems, essentially adding an additional layer of support to our existing after-hours mental health support currently provided by WPI Campus Police and SDCC. More information on the launch of this emergency number will be announced by the SDCC shortly.

Online appointment booking:
You asked for an easier online way to book an appointment. The SDCC Appointment Request Form is now available and can be found here or on the SDCC website under “How to Make an Appointment” in the right navigation menu.

Added consultants to SDCC staff:
Three new full-time consultants are now available within the SDCC and work with students every day. We will publish the profiles of these new consultants in the coming days.

Be good together update

Snapshot of the MHWB Task Force

  • The task force met with President Leshin and members of her senior leadership team just before the holidays to present findings and review recommendations related to student needs. A progress report on the student-related aspect of the task force will be shared with the WPI community over the next few days.
  • The task force continues to analyze aggregate data on faculty and staff mental health and will make recommendations at a retreat in early February – this will be the focus of subsequent reports in late February.

The task force is working to further engage underrepresented groups on campus to ensure wellbeing recommendations serve all.

Be kind to yourself - be good together

Be kind to yourself / Help find your balance
Connecting with others and building good relationships—with family, friends, and the wider community—are important for mental well-being. That’s why we’re sharing ways to connect you with others in the WPI community.

Consider WinterSession
A great way to make new friends and connect with others this new year is to attend the WinterSession – it’s packed with workshops to spark new interests! WinterSession offers the WPI community the opportunity to explore new topics, develop (or perfect) their skills, and cultivate new connections. The workshops will be held virtually or in the Innovation Studio classrooms on January 22nd and 23rd. Find out more and register here.

Be kind to your spirit - be good together

Many of us will start the new semester remotely, but we can still get off to a successful start. Some ideas to help:

  1. Set SMART (specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-bound) goals: Make a list of all the things you want to accomplish this semester. Start with what you want to achieve today and go from there.
  2. Set aside specific times each day for things outside of class: study, exercise, eat, meet friends (in person or virtually), and have fun.
  3. Create a virtual or in-person study group for your new courses so you can socialize and learn at the same time.

Be kind to your body - be good together

Set an intention (not a resolution!) for this new year – something proactive and positive: a goal or purpose, something you want to do or achieve. (It’s not a self-imposed rule to worry about possibly breaking.)

Physical health and mental health are inseparable, so why not set out to help both? Intending to improve your physical health (like those below) helps you build healthy habits you enjoy and creates a positive feedback loop that makes you feel accomplished and motivates you to to hold on to.

Intentions can be both big (for a lifetime) and small (for a day or even an hour), but they should be specific and achievable, much like SMART goals.

SMART goals.

Some examples:

  • I will take the stairs today and not the elevator
  • I plan to eat a healthy breakfast today
  • I plan on going to the gym at least three times this week
  • I plan to drink enough water today
  • I plan to do a good stretch every day before bed this month

By setting a strong intention that resonates with you, you can focus more deeply on what you want to accomplish today, this week, this year, and throughout your life.

#BeRealTogether

Photo of the student Nicolo (Nick) Miragliotta '23

Nicolo (Nick) Miragliotta ’23: “I have found that the best mental health support for me is to be part of close-knit student groups. Some of the most supportive people I’ve met through clubs and organizations; It’s great to lean on them as they can empathize with what I’m going through.”

Do you have any insight or advice on mental health support? Share it with the WPI community here.

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