Memorial students to weigh in on university health and wellness services
Friday, March 15, 2013

Health and counselling professionals at Memorial University are calling on students to take an active role in shaping the future of Memorial student health, wellness and counselling services.

Memorial Student Affairs and Services, through its student health and counselling centres, is joining in a North America-wide student health survey that will reveal the current state of student health, identify emerging campus trends and highlight areas in need of greater attention and support.

“A random sample of 5,000 Memorial students will be invited to participate in this confidential, online survey on March 19th. A high-level of participation is critical for the results to be influential in shaping future health services on Memorial campuses, “ says Dr. Norman Lee, Chief Physician with the Memorial Student Health Centre.

The National College Health Assessment (NCHA) Survey is a comprehensive international health survey that will capture student behaviors and attitudes on a broad range of health issues including nutrition, exercise, drugs and alcohol, personal safety, sexual health, stress, depression and anxiety.

Memorial is among 33 universities in Canada and over one hundred in the US participating in this year’s survey and the findings will present an objective picture of student health and emerging trends on Memorial campuses. Researchers will also be able to benchmark finding against those of post-secondary institutions students elsewhere.

The university participated in the NCHA survey in 2008 and the findings confirmed that stress and mental health issues were growing challenges for students here and on university campuses across North America.

“Today, Memorial has a psychiatrist on staff and we implemented an online alcohol assessment tool - e-CheckUpToGo - to help students understand their drinking habits,” says Kelly Neville, Wellness Coordinator with the Counselling Centre. “Both these initiatives followed from the findings of the NCHA 2008 survey.”

In addition to allocating existing resources and developing programs and services that meet student health requirements, the survey findings will also give campus counselling and health centres empirical evidence to support grant and funding applications to external sources.

A campaign themed “Are you one of the chosen ones?” is currently underway on campus to raise awareness of the student health survey and to encourage students to complete the online questionnaire if they are chosen, notified via emails to their MUN accounts on Tuesday March 19th.

“The survey is confidential and student identities cannot be linked with survey answers,” Dr. Lee explains. “So, there is no reason for students to not to participate and every reason for them to have their say in shaping the future of Memorial’s health, wellness and counselling services.”

For more information:

National College Health Assessment-