Educational Topics and Resources
Alcohol Awareness and Prevention Programs
We intend that students who attend alcohol awareness programs will:
- Understand the presence of drinking at Denison
- Understand the reasons people do or do not choose to drink
- Understand BAC and what is considered a standard drink
- Understand the effects of alcohol on the body, relationship and academics.
- Understand and implement responsible drinking strategies.
- Recognize the sign of alcohol overdose and know how to get help.
- Know where and how to utilize campus AOD resources.
Harmful and underage drinking remain significant problems on U.S. campuses, despite our collective efforts to address them. Higher education officials understand that, all too often, alcohol and other drug-related problems can seem intractable, leading to questions and frustration over how best to reduce student drinking and other drug use and its negative consequences. The overall goal of Denison’s comprehensive alcohol and other drug abuse prevention program is to reduce harm associated with alcohol and other drug use, thereby creating a safer campus community and environment.
National Collegiate Alcohol Awareness Weeks
Held each year during the third or fourth week of October and for a week in April National Collegiate Alcohol Awareness week aims to bring attention to the serious public health issues posed by excessive drinking among college student during a part of the academic calendar that is marked by football games, homecoming, Halloween weekends, and other large celebrations on many campuses. Check the Wellness Calendar for updates information and dates.
- Providing awareness and preventions resources
- Distracted driving simulator
- Sex under the influence program
- Free screenings and assessments
- Community and Campus Resources
- Educational interactive activities including: intoxication goggles, spin wheel, mock tails (can you pour a standard drink)
- National Alcohol Screening Day: Usually April 6
Web Resources for Alcohol and Other Drugs
Brief Alcohol Screening and Intervention for College Students (BASICS)
We intend that students who complete the BASICS will be able to:
- Identify the most significant parts of their Echeck up to go feedback that helped them understand their personal level of risk associated with alcohol use.
- Articulate how their feedback may impact future decisions they make about alcohol use.
- Understand the effects of alcohol on the body, relationship and academics
- Understand and be able to implement responsible drinking strategies
BASICS (Brief Alcohol Screening and Intervention for College Students) is designed to assist in examining a person’s drinking and other drug-use behavior in a judgment-free environment. BASICS is not an abstinence-only program. Instead, the goals are selected by the participant and are aimed at reducing risky behaviors and potential harmful consequences. Services provided through the BASICS program are non-judgmental, non-labeling, and confidential.
What BASICS is intended to do:
- Provide information and feedback about your drinking style and patterns, reviewing how your drinking compares to other Denison students, as well as your individual risk factors (family history, consequences, etc.).
- Explore aspects of your drinking style that have either have already resulted or may result in unpleasant or harmful experiences for you.
- Help you think through ways to maximize the positive effects associated with alcohol and minimize the likelihood of having unpleasant experiences
- Information gathering
- Program orientation
- Alcohol questionnaires
- Completion of eCheckup to go
- Feedback and discussion
- Review feedback sheet
- Personalized BAC chart
- Risk reducing strategies
CHOICES about Marijuana Class
We intend that students who participate in the Choices About Marijuana class will
- Understand how their choices about marijuana relate to their values, beliefs and goals.
- Better understand the effects of marijuana on individual wellness (i.e. physical, emotional and social)
- Identify possible positive alternatives to the behavior and develop strategies to choose those alternatives in the future.
- Understand personal motivation and readiness to change.
About the Program
The Choices About Marijuana class is a harm-reduction education program that takes place in a group setting. The goal of the class is to promote students’ self-reflection about marijuana use through interactive discussion. Participants will explore how marijuana impacts the body and brain, as well as discuss consideration of alternative behavior and strategies for risk reduction around future use. Participants will complete personal reflection exercises about the role marijuana plays in their lives, and how marijuana use connects or does not connect to their personal values, goals and objectives. The class is approximately 90 minutes in length and includes a short reflective exercise submitted to the Office of Student Conduct & Campus Values. The class is facilitated by staff from the Whisler Center for Student Wellness.
E check up to Go: Online alcohol and marijuana assessment
We intend that students who complete the E check up to go on line assessment will:
- Identify the most significant parts of their Echeck up to go feedback that helped them understand their personal level of risk associated with alcohol or marijuana use.
- Articulate how their feedback may impact future decisions they make about alcohol or marijuana use.
About the Program
e-CheckUpToGo is a brief, interactive assessment tool that provides you with individualized feedback regarding your alcohol use, and helps you identify your risk of harm associated with that use. The assessment takes about 20 minutes to complete, is self-guided, and requires no face-to-face contact time with a counselor or administrator. This tool is free to Denison students and there is no limit on how many times you can take the assessment, which allows you to track your alcohol use over time.
The personal feedback, used in conjunction with counseling, or as a stand-alone intervention, includes information that has been shown to be particularly motivating to college-aged young adults: Use this link to access the ALCOHOL E-CheckUp to Go Program (Alcohol or Marijuana)
Prescription Medication Misuse Prevention and Awareness
We intend that all who participate in prescription medication programs will:
- Understand safe medication use.
- Learn to how to resist the pressure to share.
- Gain techniques for turning down the invitation to misuse and engaging in positive alternatives.
- Understand the impact of misusing or abusing prescription medications
While alcohol abuse and binge drinking still top the list of substance abuse issues on college campuses, the non-medical use of prescription drugs — most notably stimulants, sedatives and pain relievers — is a serious and growing problem. In fact, those of college-age have among the highest rates of prescription drug abuse. About one in four people aged 18 to 20 report using these medications non-medically at least once in their lives (NSDUH, 2008), and many more have been offered these medications by friends or fellow students.
- The other Freshman 15 (15 Fact that could save your life)
- Brain Booster Workshop: conducted by medical and counseling staff this one-hour session focuses on ADHD education, reducing medication diversion and help students use medication safely and effectively as prescribed. Please contact Health and Wellness Education at 740-587-6358 for workshop schedule.
We intend that students who participate in Mental Health Awareness programs will:
- Recognize signs and symptoms of mental health illnesses.
- Understand the impact of mental health on student success.
- Identify mental health resources and coping strategies.
- Understand stigma and misconceptions around mental health.
National Depression Screening Day—Depression/Bipolar/Anxiety Screening-October (sponsored by Active Minds)
- A NASD screening form for students to complete
- A Friends and Family Questionnaire to complete if you are concerned a family member
- Educational materials on stress, anxiety and other mental health concerns
This program is conducted anonymously for all participants
Mental Health First Aid: Mental Health First Aid is an 8-hour course that teaches you how to identify, understand and respond to signs of mental illnesses and substance use disorders. The training gives you the skills you need to reach out and provide initial help and support to someone who may be developing a mental health or substance use problem or experiencing a crisis.
Fresh Check Day: Suicide Prevention Program. Fresh Check Day is the signature program of the Jordan Porco Foundation (JPF), brought to Denison by Whisler Center for Student Wellness to bring awareness of mental health resources and coping strategies to Denison’s campus. It is a celebratory fair-like event that includes: Interactive expo booths Peer-to-peer messaging Support of multiple campus departments and groups Free food and Entertainment Exciting prizes and giveaways
Fresh Check Day creates an approachable atmosphere where students are encouraged to engage in dialogue about mental health. Fresh Check Day helps to build a bridge between students and the mental health resources and programs that exist on campus, in the community, and on a national level. Using a peer-to-peer messaging model, Fresh Check Day utilizes student groups in addition to college/university staff to develop and execute interactive booths that deliver mental health and resource information in a fun and engaging way. The program’s primary goals are to:
- Increase awareness of mental health resources and services available to students
- Reduce stigma and misconceptions around mental health and suicide that often deter individuals from seeking help.
- Empower peers to be gatekeepers by understanding warning signs and knowing what to do if a friend is exhibiting signs of suicide or a mental health concern.
- Increase willingness to ask for help if experiencing emotional distress.
We intend that students who participate in the stress management programs will:
- Identify stressors that influence academic & personal balance.
- Recognize the physiological and psychological signs when experiencing stress.
- Articulate and utilize appropriate strategies to cope with and manage stress.
- Recognize support and resources on campus.
- Gather information on current stress management techniques and evaluate personal relevance.
Stress is an inevitable part of life; it can take a toll on students’ physical health, emotional wellbeing, and academic success unless they learn to manage it appropriately. College students experience stress related to changes in lifestyle, increased workload, new responsibilities, and interpersonal relationships. Learn how to manage stress by attending a destress fest or another stress management program.
Destress Fests—Stress Reduction Programs: Offered prior to mid-terms and finals we provide resources for the following: These events allow students to take a break from studying and unwind with some fun and relaxing activities. The De-Stress Fest events differ slightly each time but normally include the following: Information on stress and how to relieve stress and test anxiety, tips and strategies to manage stress in different ways, relaxation techniques, chair massages, activities: crafts, games, adult coloring books, therapy dogs, food and refreshments
Time out Tuesdays: A monthly program designed to give students a short break from classes during the lunch hour to destress. This program offers a variety of stress relief activities including: therapy dogs, coloring pages, make your own stress ball or aromatherapy sock, healthy snacks and more.
We intend that students who participate in Sexual Health Awareness programs will:
- Know where to obtain support and resources pertaining to sexual health.
- Make informed decisions regarding sexual wellbeing.
- Understand the connection between sexual health and overall well-being.
- Understand values, attitudes, and insights about sexuality.
- Understand the basics about a variety of sexually transmitted infections (STIs.)
- Know what STI tests and other resources are available at Denison.
- Understand the types of contraception and safe sex.
The Whisler Center for Student Wellness encourages students to choose to engage in sexual behaviors that are in alignment with his/her own morals, values, and beliefs, including abstinence as a choice at any time. We offer programming and resources to empower students to choose health-enhancing behaviors by encouraging safer sex practices if a student decides to engage in sexual activity to reduce the risk of sexually transmitted infections/diseases (STIs) and unplanned pregnancies.
Sex Education Training: Members of DASH and the Wellness Educators from Whisler participated in a peer Sex Education training. The training led by an Advocates for Youth Sex Education Trainer educated and trained the students on sexual anatomy, STI’s and HIV, contraception, consent, LGBTQ health and how to train other students and/or offer sexual health programs on campus.
Let’s Talk about Sex Program The goal of this program is to create a sex-positive campus culture by: providing student-friendly, medically-accurate health information; role-playing enthusiastic consent; and promoting campus and community-based resources. Along with condom relay races and free contraceptives.
Sex Under the Influence: A program focusing on the alcohol and sex. How alcohol affects our decision making and the consequences of having sex under the influence.
Sex Week: A week of sex-positive programs that focus on sexuality and relationships. The collaborative programs provide students with multiple opportunities to engage critically in health topics, practice open and honest communication, learn new information, and of course have fun! DASH and Whisler Center partner with many organizations to offer programs.
Body Image/Eating Disorders Awareness
We intend that students who participate in the Body Image programming will:
- Know what body image is both positive and negative.
- Understand the signs of different eating disorders.
- Provide help to a friend with an eating disorder or body image issue.
- Understand how to develop a healthy body image.
- Know what services and resources are available to them on and off campus.
Many college students struggle with the way they look or how they feel about their bodies, with one out of three normal dieters progressing to pathological dieting. By recognizing the symptoms of eating disorders, and getting help, students can end their preoccupation with food and focus their efforts on developing healthy eating and exercise habits. Below is information about the programs we offer and the Embodied Wellness Team.
Love Your Body Week: Love Your Body Week is an annual campaign at Denison to promote positive body image and healthy habits, it serves to raise awareness about the media's negative impact on body image.
Eating Disorders Awareness Week NEDA—February: The National Eating Disorders Screening Program (NEDSP) is designed to educate and screen college students for eating disorders, and to connect at-risk students with the resources they need. Held annually during National Eating Disorders Awareness Week, we offer free screening, film screening and feedback session, and other programs. Visit the Wellness Program Calendar for details and program dates.
The Great Jeans Giveaway: Across the nation, the Great Jeans Giveaway serves as NEDA's signature event for the national awareness week to reinforce the message “embrace your genes, wear jeans that fit the true you.” The event asks participants to bring in old pairs of jeans because too often individuals struggle against their natural, genetically influenced size just to fit into that pair of “skinny jeans” in the back of their closets. Fighting one's natural size and shape can lead to unhealthy dieting practices, poor body image and eating disorders. Embodied wellness places donation boxes in service centers and Slayter Union to collect unwanted jeans and donate them to a local charity.
We intend that students who participate in sleep programs will:
- Understand the basic ways that sleep affects our minds and bodies.
- Understand how some behaviors affect sleep and vice versa.
- Be able to utilize sleep hygiene tips and napping strategies.
- Understand the importance of sleep for academic success and personal well-being.
Developing healthy sleep habits in a college environment can be challenging. A student’s schedule can often change from day to day and from week to week depending on the demands of work, social and academic schedules. Poor sleep habits can affect academic performance, increase depression, weaken the immune system and lead to dangerous driving conditions for the affected individual. Adequate, quality sleep is important to a college student’s overall wellness and academic success. To pick up a sleep mask contact Health and Wellness Education at 740-587-6358 or stop by Whisler Center for Student Wellness.
The Sleep campaign The Sleep Campaign aims to provide students with the skills and strategies to achieve more restful nights. The Sleep Campaign consisted of the following activities:
- Nap map located in Slayter Union with popular napping location. Offered opportunity for student to place a tag in new or other napping locations as well as list their napping strategies. Students can also pick up a sleep mask with tips on better sleep.
- Essential Oils and sleep: a program brought to the students by a trained professional in essentials oils.
- Resident Hall programs upon request.
Here are 10 tips to try to help you get into the right frame of mind for sleep:
- Avoid caffeine at night, and limit it during the day.
- Skip alcohol before bed.
- Create a sleep schedule, and stick to it.
- Don’t sleep in on weekends or days when you have late class; wake up close to the same time every day.
- Put books and homework away at least 30 minutes to an hour before bedtime.
- Don’t study or work on your computer in bed.
- Exercise earlier in the day, never just before bed.
- Don’t watch TV just before bed.
- Sleep with earplugs and use an eye pillow to drown out any bright lights and the noise Turn out the lights when it’s time to go to bed; a bright room will keep you awake.
Safe Spring Break
We intend that students who participate in the stress management programs will:
- Be prepared to travel safely.
- Understand responsible drinking and safe sex strategies.
- Make informed decisions on sun, hotel and beach safety.
- Know what resources are available to them.
Safe Spring Break — March
This campaign is an opportunity to get important information out to students during the week or two prior to Spring Break on topics such as: personal safety, highway safety, alcohol, impaired driving, sleep and sun safety.
- Responsible Drinking information and activities
- Safe sex tips
- Safety tips for: driving, traveling, swimming, beach, hotels
- Packing checklist
- Giveaways include: condoms, sunscreen, water bottles, lip balm, sunglasses
- Sexual Assault Prevention information
We intend that students who participate in Healthy Relationships programs will:
- Engage is safe healthy relationships.
- Understand the qualities of healthy versus unhealthy relationship.
- Be able to prevent unhealthy relationships.
- Know how to help and support a friend.
Relationships aren’t always easy to maintain…college opens the door for all kinds of new relationship challenges such as roommate issues, casual dating, serious dating, friendships, and sex. You may also be confronted by interpersonal issues when you play on an intramural team, become involved in a student organization, or decide to join Greek life. These various relationships can provide a great deal of comfort and support during your college years, but they can also be a source of confusion and stress at times. How do you keep the lines of communication open so that you can maintain strong, honest, and respectful relationships? Review the qualities of healthy relationships below:
The programs offered on healthy relationships are aimed at raising awareness among students of the warning signs of physical, verbal and emotional relationship abuse, educate students about maintaining healthy relationships and generate awareness of campus and community resources for students experiencing relationship abuse.
Please call 740-587-6200 and press #1 to schedule an appointment with a member of our medical or behavioral staff
*Given demand for student appointments, we ask that you cancel any appointment you are unable to attend.
Counseling “Walk-in Hour”:
No appointment necessary
Monday through Friday
11:30 am - 12:30 pm.
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: