Expanding Health and Well-Being at Georgia Tech
In late 2018, leaders from Student Life, Campus Recreation, the Counseling Center, Health Initiatives, and Stamps Health Services began working on a new strategy for approaching health and well-being at the Institute — in particular, mental health and well-being. Feedback from students through the A Path Forward — Together initiative strongly indicated the need for a single pathway for students to access campus mental health resources.
After reviewing the current model and national best practices, the group identified the strengths of the current system and highlighted opportunities for growth and reconfiguring partnerships.
Today, those efforts have resulted in the creation of a cross-divisional, shared reporting structure founded on a team approach to health and well-being. The Office of Health and Well-Being (which housed Campus Recreation, Health Initiatives, and Stamps Health Services) has now been expanded and transformed into a team now known as Health and Wellbeing at Georgia Tech (HW@GT).
Unlike a traditional department, HW@GT is a collective of departments from both Campus Services and Student Life. “This expands what was already being done well into a more formal partnership that transcends divisions and establishes a shared vision and mission,” said JulieAnne Williamson, interim vice president for Campus Services. “These departments were already working collectively and collaborating, so it felt like a natural fit to formalize their relationship.”
HW@GT will not only include Campus Recreation, the Counseling Center, Health Initiatives, and Stamps Health Services, but also the newly established Center for Assessment, Referral, and Education (CARE), which will open this summer. In addition, Health Initiatives has changed divisions and now reports directly to Student Life with a secondary report to Campus Services.
“We believe that health and well-being are essential pieces to the human condition and that these departments working collectively is vital to advancing health, well-being, and student success at Georgia Tech,” said John Stein, vice president for Student Life and Brandt-Fritz Dean of Students Chair. “What matters most is that through this reorganization, we are prioritizing health and well-being at Georgia Tech in an intentional and meaningful way and establishing a deeper network of support for our community.”
HW@GT aspires to help make Georgia Tech a place where students, faculty, and staff lead balanced, connected, and purposeful lives and experience high levels of physical, emotional, social, and professional well-being. To learn more about HW@GT, its mission, and vision, visit hwb.gatech.edu.