By Daniela Cespedes
How sweet would it be to know a s.w.e.e.t.? Chances are you already know one.
The Student Wellness Education and Empowerment Team (s.w.e.e.t.) is a group of students who focus on sharing tips on staying well on campus.
As the slogan says, “Who are we? Students like you. We eat. We sleep (sometimes). We study. We have a good time. We’ve also got the facts about drinking, dealing with stress, bystander intervention, and staying well on campus.”
As college students, it is important but oftentimes difficult to find a balance between courses, extracurriculars, social and personal life. S.w.e.e.t. reminds students of the importance of self-care through the many programs they offer.
I became a s.w.e.e.t member my junior year because I was interested in becoming a part of a group that promoted wellness. As a member now, I realize that s.w.e.e.t. members and the different programs we promote offer more than I knew or expected.
Canine Help SHU? is a program that allows students to de-stress from classes or daily pressures by bringing in therapy dogs, whose only job is to brighten a student’s day. As many students say that they feel homesick throughout the semester, these therapy dogs come monthly to the UC Lobby of the Main Academic Building for students to pet.
Another program I have been able to participate in is S.w.e.e.t. Dreams. We begin by asking students if they think they practice good sleeping habits. Most students say that they feel as though they do not get enough sleep and even with long naps in between classes, they still do not feel rested.
This program shares facts about sleep hygiene with the goal of reminding students of the importance of sleep and how one can improve their sleeping habits.
S.w.e.e.t. offers more programs like the Bar Exam, an interactive presentation that teaches the accurate measurements of alcoholic drinks so that students who choose to drink know their limits. Not only this, but the program aims to educate first-year students about alcohol use and its consequences.
Another program that students can take advantage of, especially during finals season, is the Stress-Free Zone. Here students have several options to de-stress from the pressures of finals week. From therapy dogs that students can hug, to making your own stress ball and even aromatherapy, the Stress-Free Zone program reminds students to take a moment to leave their worries behind for just one moment.
I have had an amazing experience with s.w.e.e.t since I became a member. New members are required to attend three days of training before the start of the new semester where they get several presentations from the health and wellness staff on campus.
This training allowed me to learn more about bystander intervention, the staff at the counseling center, and tips on approaching, talking and listening to people.
S.w.e.e.t. members are not just presenters or hosts to the several programs. They can be mentors and friends whom one can confide in. S.w.e.e.t. members know the pressures of classes, work, athletics, social and personal life which makes them a great resource for students to trust in.
You can go to the Sacred Heart webpage and look up: Meet the s.w.e.e.t. peer educators, where you can find student members like me and a link to our e-mail.
Students should never feel like they’re alone in their college experience, so s.w.e.e.t members are here to help with any type of need.