I remember sitting in my freshman orientation and looking like the Mr. Crab meme after learning about all the resources USF has for students. The great thing is they’re all FREE. The second best thing about them is they’re available all day, everyday, 24/7.

Adjusting to college life can be overwhelming for anyone. Health and wellness are becoming hot topics and some of the stigmas and views surrounding it are more positive than before. This year, my resolution is to do more self-care because I want to be a better and healthier Alex.

The University of South Florida’s St. Petersburg campus offers various resources in the Wellness Center. It’s simple to walk in and get the help your tuition and fees cover. If you’re a student at USF or any other university, these services may be available to you:

1. Counseling and Psychological Services

Students can come in and speak to a licensed mental health professional for counseling and clinical psychology. The counseling services are appointment-based but, if it’s an emergency or urgent situation, walk-ins are allowed. Besides individual counseling, group and couples counseling sessions are options too.

If you’re interested in trying out meditation, the Wellness Center offers a Mindful Monday Meditation Break every week. I added the Mindfulness Meditation class on the USF Tampa campus to my self-care to help me get through the semester and so far I like it. It’s relaxing and it helps me process what’s going on in my life at that moment.

I started going to therapy earlier this month too but not at USF. So far, my therapist is helping me make sense of my life and emotional issues. I’ve only had two sessions but I recognize the origins of my problems. If you are a student that needs help of any kind, don’t hesitate.

2. Self-Help

Not everyone wants to see a therapist and that’s okay. If you feel like your issues aren’t that serious and you can cope on your own, there are some self-help resources. Some of the resources at the Wellness Center include body image and eating disorders, mental health, and stress management. When you click on the resource topic, information pertaining to it is there to educate and help you learn.

There is a Wellness Room where anyone can go and begin their self-help journey. The purpose of the room is to provide students, faculty, and staff a safe and quiet place to meet their wellness goals. There are numerous materials and resources in the room like brochures, DVDs, and meditation CDs. The room is open during business hours and you don't need an appointment.

3. Crisis Services

Ever been in a crisis and had no idea where to turn? Whether a student is suicidal and looking for someone to talk to or is having a mental health issue, there are several numbers to hotlines and walk-in clinics. As a precaution, on the page in bold letters are reminders that if safety is a concern or if it’s an emergency, call 911.(Seems obvious, right??)

4. Health Services

Healthcare is a HUGE topic on everyone’s mind now with the Federal plans to repeal Obamacare. Students without healthcare have the option of purchasing the USF’s Student Health Insurance. For students with insurance already, Health Services does accept different insurance companies.

USF offers services related to nutrition, illness, and women’s health. In undergrad, I was hospitalized for some lady issues I was having and my first stop was the health services clinic on-campus to figure out what the problem was. They were very helpful because I had no clue what was going on with my body but I’m glad I went.

5. Health Promotion and Education Services

The health promotion team is made up of a health educator, and peer educators to encourage, teach, and support making healthy decisions. They provide wellness consultations to help deal with issues like healthy work/life balance, relationships, and sexual health. They provide programs and workshops to enhance the wellness in the community and meet the needs to students.

USF ST. Pete Wellness Center

140 7th Ave. S.

SLC 2200

St. Petersburg, FL 33701

Contact: 727-873-4140