Mental health, well-being, safety remain top priority as spring semester reaches midpoint mark – Purdue University

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February 9, 2024
Dear Purdue students,

With spring working its hardest to make an early entrance on our Purdue University campus, we want to share some reminders about mental health, well-being and physical safety — and, more importantly, what we can do together to make this a successful semester.
Mental Health Action Week: Feb. 26-March 1
For the benefit of the entire campus community, the fifth annual Mental Health Action Week is set for Feb. 26-March 1.
Co-sponsored by Purdue Graduate Student Government (PGSG), Purdue Student Government (PSG), Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS), Purdue University Student Health Center (PUSH) and RecWell, a series of well-being activities, food, fun and programs highlighting available resources is planned:
Our campuswide, weeklong focus on mental health, well-being and awareness this spring is designed to:
Mental health and well-being
Led by the efforts of our Action Council on Student Housing and Well-Being, we have expanded campus mental and well-being services, equipping CAPS to address the growing needs of students as they pursue academic success and personal growth.
For the first time in years, CAPS is 100% staffed. That means counseling teams have greater capacity to respond to an evolving list of mental health and wellness needs — from anxiety, depression and academic struggles to eating issues, alcohol use and relationship concerns.
By bolstering CAPS staff, we have also significantly improved our staff-to-student ratio, which aligns with what is recommended by the International Accreditation of Counseling Services. CAPS, in the meantime, has doubled the size of its high-risk team the past three years while adding a psychiatric provider and nurse as part of its expanded staffing capacity.
All of this has been made possible through a commitment by the university to increase CAPS’ 2023-24 appropriation to $4.7 million, which is up nearly 30% from $3.7 million last year. Another $557,816 was added to increase access for students with disabilities.
Safety reminders
With the mix of pedestrians, bicycles, skateboards, and motorized and manual scooters, we want to remind our entire campus community to be vigilant in your comings and goings. Look both ways before crossing a street, sidewalk or bicycle or scooter lane.
Purdue police remind our students, faculty, staff and visitors to put safety first while navigating our busy streets, sidewalks and bicycle paths, asking everyone to play their part by simply paying attention to their surroundings. Additional information about pedestrian safety is available on the Transportation Services website.
We thank everyone who completed the transportation and pedestrian safety survey this fall. We look forward to implementing suggestions as we continue to build on the progress made in recent years on campus safety enhancements.
We also believe we have seen the safety benefits of efforts, in working with the city of West Lafayette, to reduce the speed limits for roads and streets on and around campus. Lower vehicle speeds lead to safer pedestrian movement, especially on our large college campus.

Students, faculty and staff in need of an escort to and from campus buildings for safety purposes also can utilize the Safe Walk Program 24 hours a day by calling 765-494-SAFE (7233).

Additional safeguards are nearly 300 Emergency Telephone System (ETS) boxes at almost every street intersection and other strategic locations on campus. The ETS boxes are yellow or black, have a blue light on top and are marked “EMERGENCY” or “911.”
Health and well-being additional support 
 CAPS, Counseling and Psychological Services, has same-day or next-day appointments. Contact 765-494-6995 to make an appointment. Services are brief in nature. There are no predefined session limits. Crisis services are available 24/7. Call 911 if your crisis is life-threatening. After-hours support is available by calling the CAPS main number and pressing 1. 

 TAO offers self-guided resources including short videos, brief exercises and self-reflection tools to help overcome anxiety, depression, loneliness and other concerns and to assist with topics including social support, relaxation and problem-solving. To enroll, click on the link and log in using your Purdue credentials.

 PUSHthe Purdue University Student Health Center, strives to keep you healthy and well. If it is right for you, consider getting a COVID-19 booster and/or flu shot. If you are sick or have a fever, get checked out! Delaying care can lead to worsening conditions.

 Recreation and Wellness provides our community with activities that contribute to learning and the pursuit of an active, healthy lifestyle. This excellent resource offers exercise, fitness training, nutrition counseling, wellness coaching, a mindfulness space, financial literacy/Boiler Financial Track and, in general, an excellent social outlet.

 ODOS Student Support Services: Some students may not need to see a licensed clinician to feel better and/or supported. The Office of the Dean of Students is staffed with professionals who care deeply about students and their success. To visit a student support specialist between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. weekdays, visit the office on the second floor of Schleman Hall, and they can help.

 Student of Concern: Worried about another student? Report your concern through the Student of Concern Report.
As our spring 2024 semester gains momentum, we are grateful that each of you has chosen to be here with us as a valued member of our Purdue community. We wish you all a terrific rest of the semester. 
One brick higher each day: Boiler Up!

Patrick Wolfe
Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs and Diversity
Action Council on Student Housing and Well-Being Co-Chair
Chris Ruhl
Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer
Action Council on Student Housing and Well-Being Co-Chair
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