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Colleges Find Unique Ways to Help Students Relieve Stress



By Chris Hassan
Posted December 14, 2012 12:00 PM

Colleges help students relieve stress.
Colleges help students relieve stress.
No one ever said earning a bachelor's or master's degree was easy. For some students, everything from studying for final exams to getting along with one or more roommates can make the college experience quite stressful. Fortunately, officials at many institutions realize there can be a few bumps on the road to earning a degree, and provide opportunities for students to reduce stress at crucial points in their college careers.

Students Stretch Their Way to Better Peace of Mind

Realizing that her nursing, health sciences management and exercise sciences students may require stress relief during final exams week, Sandi Tenfelde, an assistant professor at Loyola University Chicago's Marcella Niehoff School of Nursing, became a certified yoga instructor, according to a press release. With the goal of reducing students' stress levels in mind, Tenfelde provided them with a chance to attend a recent yoga class.

"Yoga can provide college students with many emotional and physical benefits," said Tenfelde. "Regular yoga practice during finals week also can improve mental clarity and concentration making students more likely to excel under pressure."

Another benefit of Tenfelde's yoga training is the ability she now has to better prepare her students for careers as healthcare professionals. It can be hard for individuals to care for themselves when they devote so much of their time to the well-being of others. Tenfelde hopes she can instill the importance of self-care in her students.

Medical School Stress Relief Goes to the Dogs

While the road to graduation can prove difficult for students at all levels, those who are pursuing a doctorate degree in a medical school setting are known to face their fair share of challenges. This is why students enrolled at Michigan State University's College of Human Medicine's Grand Rapids and Lansing campuses recently received a visit from West Michigan Therapy Dogs, The Grand Rapids Press reported. These sessions were designed to both educate and help students feel more at ease during exam week.

"We thought it would give the students a direct way to experience the kind of therapy these dogs can provide, but in a first-hand way for themselves," Laura Bennett, the assistant director of student counseling at the school, told The Grand Rapids Press.

Handlers brought a total of 25 therapy dogs to the Grand Rapids campus, where they spoke to students about the impact the canines have on patients. There was also plenty of time set aside for students to play with the dogs and engage in an array of other educational activities.

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