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How to be a healthy student at Michigan Tech

September 26, 2012 in Community, Events, Health & Safety

Staying Healthy

Staying healthy is essential for a student. It allows us to keep our minds working at full capacity and to keep up with our often hectic social and academic lives.  Midterms, exams, homework, and papers are all constant worries and no student wants to add a case of the sniffles on top of it all.

So what can your student do to prevent this?

Hygiene: Send your student a friendly reminder of the importance of washing their hands and keeping the germs down so they don’t catch any bugs.

Photo Credit: http://www.dining.mtu.edu/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=242&Itemid=441

Get Adequate Sleep:

I believe that this is one of the most important ways to be a successful college student.  It seems that as soon as I begin to lose sleep, I always get sick. The average adult needs six to eight hours of sleep each night to function effectively.  College students need at least six to eight hours, but some research states that college student may need 10-12 hours each night to be at their best.  It is important that college students make sleep a priority and that they do not substitute a good night of sleep with caffeine or frequent naps.  Your student can add more hours of sleep into their schedule by carefully planning their schedule and setting concrete goals for homework completion.  Encourage your student to have a solid sleep schedule and to keep it consistent.

Eat Right: Whether your student lives in the residence halls or off campus, there are many opportunities to eat healthy, even if your student doesn’t realize it.  We all know how tempting those french fries, chips, or desserts can be while  walking through the dining hall or grocery store, but eating only these options can begin to take a toll on your body. College students are still growing and need to make sure that they are getting their daily fruits, vegetables, dairy, and water.  Michigan Tech’s Dining Services has several healthy options for students to choose from.  In the residence halls, there are great salad bars, and students can even take one piece of fruit out of the dining hall with them to snack on later.  Dining Services also has a number of cafes on campus, including Fusion and the Library Cafe.  Fusion, located in the Dow Building, has real fruit smoothies, salads, and wraps for students to purchase.  The Library Cafe, located in the Van Pelt Library, also has salads, wraps, and fruit drinks available for purchase.

Exercise: Staying active and exercising regularly is especially important for a college student’s health.  Exercising reduces stress and improves overall health.  College is probably one of the easiest times in a person’s life to make time for exercise.  Exercise in college can be very convenient, as there are many nearby facilities that your student can utilize.  Michigan Tech provides numerous ways for students to stay active.  With Experience Tech, Michigan Tech students can enjoy the Gates Tennis CenterMt. Ripley, the Portage Lake Golf Course, and much more.  The Student Development Complex also has a great fitness center for students to use that is free of charge.  There are also a variety of fun ways to stay active and get some exercise.  What could be more enjoyable than biking on the Tech Trails or renting a kayak from the Outdoor Adventure Program and paddling up the Portage Canal?  There are also several organized activities students can get involved in such as BroomballFrisbockey, or Intramural Sports.  Lastly, Michigan Tech offers several Physical Education courses that students can take for pass/fail credit.

Get Vaccinations: Students can stay healthy during flu season by getting a flu shot.  Every year Michigan Tech hosts a flu shot clinic for students.  The clinic is usually held in October or November, but the exact dates for this year’s flu shot clinic will be announced to students soon.

Take Care of Emotional and Mental Health: College is a time of transition that can often times be stressful for students.  It is important that students take time to relax and find activities that they enjoy.  Students may also find it helpful to stay connected with friends and family back home. However, it is important to understand that they may struggle to find the time to stay connected or to initiate contact.  Michigan Tech’s Counseling  Services provides students with several resources to help them succeed throughout their academic career at Michigan Tech. The counselors at Counseling Services can help students manage stress and any other issues that may be interfering with their coursework or personal lives.  For a complete list of services that Counseling  Services provides, see the Counseling Services page.

My Farewell

Parents, I am sad to say that this is my last article as the ParentNet Weekly Article Writer.  This is my last semester as a student here at Tech and I will be graduating in December.  I am currently working on finishing out my experience here at Michigan Tech as a Student Affairs Intern. In January I will begin graduate school, working toward my masters in Educational Leadership in Student Affairs. I am very excited for this next step in my life. However, it will be very hard to leave Michigan Tech and the community that I have come to call my home.  I am grateful for the opportunity that I have had to serve as your ParentNet Weekly Article Writer, and it is the conversations that I have had with you that led me to believe that I need to pursue a career working in higher education.  I want to thank you for letting me into your lives, for letting me share my Michigan Tech experiences with you, and for sharing your questions, concerns, triumphs, and successes with me.  It has been such a pleasure to write for you and I could not have asked for better readership!

Next week’s article will be coming from our new ParentNet Weekly Article Writer, Travis Gendron.  Travis is a personal friend of mine and I know that he will continue to keep you well-informed of campus events, community happenings, and issues that are important to you and your student.  Travis is involved in many aspects of campus life and I am excited for ParentNet Weekly to have the new and fresh perspective that Travis will bring to the articles that he writes.  I would like to wish you, your student, and Travis the best!

Check back for next week’s article, where Travis will introduce himself to you in his first ParentNet Weekly Article!