SGA hears updates on student fee usage for campus wellness and recreation

     During the SGA senate meeting on Feb. 3, senators received updates on the state of the Wellness Center and work of the CARE team at the Dean of Students’ Office.  

     Campus Director of Recreation Skyler Rorabaugh began by outlining future ideas for outdoor wellness facilities, such as skate parks, outdoor climbing areas, bike tracks, an athletics conditioning room and more. Rorabaugh said that student fees are important in continuing campus recreation services. 

     Vice Chancellor of Health and Wellness Stephanie Hanenberg took the floor to give a few more details on the function of the Wellness Center as a whole, praising it as a “role model” for recreation centers throughout the nation.  

     Among the services she highlighted are psychiatrists, therapists, vaccination programs, dietary support, massages and more that can be found at the website. She explained that the Wellness Center aims to be affordable for students, adding, “We don’t turn anyone away for an inability to pay.” 

     Hanenberg also shared plans to expand Wellness Center services, including the addition of two therapists by the end of March to increase appointment availability. Other prospective developments include optometry for students who need glasses and physical therapy. 

     However, in relation to student fees supporting current services, Hanenberg said, “Things are going to have to be looked at over the coming years.” 

     Dean of Students Amanda Allee followed Rorabaugh and Hanenberg. Allee provided examples of the work that the Campus Assessment Response and Evaluation (CARE) team is doing concerning student support.  

     “We tend to focus on behaviors that might get students into trouble,” she said, listing health, academics and basic needs or security as the CARE team’s primary focus.  

     Allee touched on the mental health issues that COVID-19 has created in the community and difficulties CARE has faced in supporting students during such a “rough and busy semester.”  

     She also talked about CARE’s work with Clyde’s Cupboard and explained how they use a survey when students take items from the supplies to gain data.  

     When Student Body Vice President Cassandra Onate asked about students’ comfort level with the survey, Allee explained that although it is optional, CARE has “gotten a lot of really great stories about how it helped [students] that week.”  

     Students can find more information about CARE here.  

     The meeting closed with comments from Student Body President Emily Gregory, who reminded the senators of the mask policy and requested that they “keep encouraging people to practice safety on campus.”  

     She also gave her thoughts on the proposal to raise student fees. “Fee changes are ultimately made to keep vital student programs going,” she said, asking senators to consider that in their decision. 

Stephanie Hanenberg, assistant vice chancellor for health and wellness, gave a presentation on the facilities offered by the Gallogly Recreation and Wellness Center. Screenshot by Meghan Germain.