– Follow a healthy diet of whole grains, fruits, vegetables, andlean meat. Avoid too much of pizzas and other fast foods and junkfoods as these kinds of foods lower your energy levels and hencelower your ability to manage stress well. Eat regularly and do notwait to feel so ravenous that you fill your stomach with short-termcomfort foods that are rich in sugars and salts. You will get into awretched food cycle and getting out of this unpleasant cycle will addto your stress levels. Enhance intake of good foods and avoid junkand fast foods as much as possible.
– While it is good to work hard, know when you are crossing limitsand overloading yourself. You must remember juggling college, work,and extra-curricular activities can be a lot to handle. You couldunwittingly have taken on more than your capacity. Do not hesitate tocut down on some coursework or drop a subject when you realize thatyou are feeling overworked. Remember your parents may not always bearound to see the effect of your overwork on your health. It is up toyou to take care of yourself on your own.
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Understanding the Working College Student offers several strategies for transforming the role of employment in students’ educational experiences. One potential strategy is to develop connections between employment and learning by incorporating into coursework the knowledge gained through work-based experiences. Another strategy is to recognize formally the contribution of workplace experiences to student learning by awarding course credit for relevant employment experiences. Several organizations offer mechanisms for assessing and awarding course credit for work and other prior experiences—for example, the College Board’s College-Level Examination Program and the American Council on Education’s College Credit Recommendation Service.
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Although students who work have an obligation to fulfill their academic responsibilities, colleges and universities also have a responsibility to ensure that all students—including those who work—can be successful.
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Working is now a fundamental responsibility for many undergraduates. But understanding how employment affects students’ educational experiences is complicated by why students work. Many students must work to pay the costs of attending college. As College Board policy analyst Sandy Baum argues in a 2010 collection of essays I edited, Understanding the Working College Student: New Research and Its Implications for Policy and Practice, while some of these students are awarded “work” as part of their financial aid package, other students either do not receive work-study funding or find such awards insufficient to cover the costs of attendance. Some traditional-age students may use employment as a way to explore career options or earn spending money. For other students, particularly adult students, work is a part of their identity, as Carol Kasworm, a professor of adult education at North Carolina State University, and other contributors to Understanding the Working College Student point out. Regardless of the reason for working, trying to meet the multiple and sometimes conflicting simultaneous demands of the roles of student, employee, parent, and so on often creates high levels of stress and anxiety, making it less likely that students will complete their degrees.
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Colleges and universities can also create a supportive campus culture for working students. To do so, faculty members and administrators must understand the learning and support needs of working students. While the national data paint a picture of student employment “on average,” individual colleges and universities must also understand the patterns of employment—and the implications of these patterns—on their own campuses. Colleges and universities must educate both professors and administrators about the prevalence of student employment and how to connect students’ workplace and academic experiences and then change institutional policies, practices, and structures to promote such connections. In particular, higher education institutions, especially those with large proportions of students working large numbers of hours, should consider whether their structures are oriented toward meeting only the needs of “traditional” students—that is, students enrolled full time and working ten to fifteen hours per week in on-campus positions.