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A Shared Mission of Wellness

Junior Daniel Mejia took in the new surroundings in Griffith Hall on Thursday and said bringing together all of the student health services under one roof will be a “big improvement” on campus.

Group shot of Stetson President Wendy Libby and others holding green ribbon outside Griffith Hall.

Stetson President Wendy B. Libby, Ph.D., cuts the ribbon Thursday, Jan. 18, for renovated Griffith Hall, with Stetson officials and John B., the Athletics mascot, back.

Student Counseling Services, Stetson Health Service, and Religious & Spiritual Life celebrated their new offices in renovated Griffith Hall with a ribbon-cutting and open house on Thursday.

“I actually see it as an improvement for the student body, but I also see it for the people who work here,” said Mejia, a health sciences major from San Juan, Puerto Rico. “I feel like this is going to bring a stronger sense of community because all these departments that were pieced out around campus are now all in one. I think we can’t beat that.”

The three offices have a shared mission of promoting student wellness – physically, emotionally and spiritually – and can offer more services and amenities in their new, larger spaces.

Daniel Mejia ties the strip of paper on thin tree branches in a vase

Stetson junior Daniel Mejia ties a piece of rice paper on a Prayer Tree, which holds prayers and wishes, in the Religious & Spiritual Life offices on Thursday.

For example, Religious & Spiritual Life and Stetson’s three chaplains have opened an Interfaith Prayer and Meditation Room, which is available from 8 a.m. to midnight, seven days a week.

Student Counseling Services is offering more group counseling, such as ones on building resilience or dealing with grief, said Director Leigh Baker, Ph.D.

For Stetson Health Service, the new space provides more accessibility than its former location in a historic house on Bert Fish Drive. The new office provides room for paramedics to bring gurneys into exam rooms, and an automatic door for students on crunches or students in wheelchairs. The medical clinic operates as a partnership between Stetson and Florida Hospital to provide medical services to students and Stetson employees.

“The accessibility factor was one of the driving forces,” said Cathy Rinehart, RN, Stetson’s Health Service coordinator. “The accessibility has just increased 100 fold.”