Jun 2, 2019
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  1. Pre-Veterinary
Hello friends!

I'm doing my DVM at the University of Guelph (OVC) and I'll be running a lot of the student wellness initiatives at our school to basically make the mental health burden of vet school (esp. during COVID) less bad. I thought I'd reach out on this forum to see what other schools have been doing and hopefully share some ideas.

Some of the things we have in mind
  • Cooking shows/videos for healthy and east weeknight dinners. We're trying to have these hosted by students so that whatever we're cooking up will be within the budget/skill level of the student body.
  • Seminars covering mental health/resiliency/ etc. in a veterinary context
  • Gift baggies for students with stress balls/treats/etc. as well as contact info for actual mental health support
As a side note, this would conventionally be crammed into a sort of "Wellness Week" at our school but we're trying to move towards doing events more regularly spaced out during the school year to really reinforce the notion that healthy habits are not the sort of thing to do once and forget about but rather something to practice consistently.

Anyways lemme know what y'all are getting up to! We're all in this together <3
 
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EngrSC

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We have 2 therapists associated with the vet school and a wellness committee that plans fun events (haven't participated but I know they've done a virtual wine-tasting thing, a few virtual trivia nights, and a scavenger hunt this semester). VMCVM is on the pass-fail system in the interest of mental health and you only get your class rank (based on exam averages) if you ask for it. And I believe it's technically an honor code violation to discuss exam scores with classmates (though I'm not sure if it's enforced). I feel like VMCVM does a pretty good job of fostering a collaborative atmosphere vs one of competition, which definitely helps with mental health! We've also had virtual seminars on mental health topics and we have virtual yoga every Monday at noon (in person in non-COVID times).

Apparently some of my classmates have been feeling isolated because we work in "pods" of 4 and not really outside of our pods due to COVID. So the school started this peer-mentorship thing where there's a 3rd year paired with a handful of first years that meets every other week via Zoom (though now we're allowed to meet in person in groups of 5 or less). And they split up the pods so none of my pod-mates are in my same peer-group.
 
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Apr 17, 2020
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At my undergrad I initiated a self-care program and events within my fraternity! We would gather and listen to classical music while studying, or do face masks, use a lavender diffuser and make snacks/comfort food. I know this is going to be difficult with covid so I would suggest doing self care mini kits (including something lavender for relaxation, suggestions for music classical or relaxing white noise, little easy recipe cards maybe, a quick yoga guide print out, Etc) it’s important to remind students to take that time for themselves. I always encourage 1 hour two to three times weekly of self care!
 
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Jun 2, 2019
38
43
Status (Visible)
  1. Pre-Veterinary
We have 2 therapists associated with the vet school and a wellness committee that plans fun events (haven't participated but I know they've done a virtual wine-tasting thing, a few virtual trivia nights, and a scavenger hunt this semester). VMCVM is on the pass-fail system in the interest of mental health and you only get your class rank (based on exam averages) if you ask for it. And I believe it's technically an honor code violation to discuss exam scores with classmates (though I'm not sure if it's enforced). I feel like VMCVM does a pretty good job of fostering a collaborative atmosphere vs one of competition, which definitely helps with mental health! We've also had virtual seminars on mental health topics and we have virtual yoga every Monday at noon (in person in non-COVID times).

Apparently some of my classmates have been feeling isolated because we work in "pods" of 4 and not really outside of our pods due to COVID. So the school started this peer-mentorship thing where there's a 3rd year paired with a handful of first years that meets every other week via Zoom (though now we're allowed to meet in person in groups of 5 or less). And they split up the pods so none of my pod-mates are in my same peer-group.
I totally agree with the not talking about grades thing. There's no official regulation but its very much frowned upon to compare grades and tbh nobody cares too much so long as its above the passing threshold anyways. We have 10-person practice groups where we'll meet virtually to do review sessions sometimes- I think fostering that sense of teamwork is super important and it's certainly been quite helpful academically because we all have different professional backgrounds. We also have a snapchat group for non-school stuff which has also been quite helpful at combating the isolation and actually fostering a solid friendship.

At my undergrad I initiated a self-care program and events within my fraternity! We would gather and listen to classical music while studying, or do face masks, use a lavender diffuser and make snacks/comfort food. I know this is going to be difficult with covid so I would suggest doing self care mini kits (including something lavender for relaxation, suggestions for music classical or relaxing white noise, little easy recipe cards maybe, a quick yoga guide print out, Etc) it’s important to remind students to take that time for themselves. I always encourage 1 hour two to three times weekly of self care!
I love the recipe cards idea! We're working on compiling a digital cookbook of student recipes, but I think little recipe cards would be a great idea to include in our gift baskets! Myself and most folks I know have these "staple" recipes that we've been using to feed ourselves throughout our undergrads so our goal is to compile them all into a list of stuff that is reasonably good tasting/healthy but also cheap and easy to make.
 
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Apr 17, 2020
469
665
I totally agree with the not talking about grades thing. There's no official regulation but its very much frowned upon to compare grades and tbh nobody cares too much so long as its above the passing threshold anyways. We have 10-person practice groups where we'll meet virtually to do review sessions sometimes- I think fostering that sense of teamwork is super important and it's certainly been quite helpful academically because we all have different professional backgrounds. We also have a snapchat group for non-school stuff which has also been quite helpful at combating the isolation and actually fostering a solid friendship.


I love the recipe cards idea! We're working on compiling a digital cookbook of student recipes, but I think little recipe cards would be a great idea to include in our gift baskets! Myself and most folks I know have these "staple" recipes that we've been using to feed ourselves throughout our undergrads so our goal is to compile them all into a list of stuff that is reasonably good tasting/healthy but also cheap and easy to make.

I have so many easy quick recipes that I utilized all the time in school! And even now that I’m graduated!
 
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