Workshop emphasizes positive outcomes of sleep

Wellness promotes program to help struggling students.

ZACH GOFF, Evergreen reporter

To combat the struggle many students face in getting enough sleep, Health & Wellness Services offers a program to strengthen sleep habits.

Health & Wellness graduate assistant Brianne Posey said the program, called “Sleep More, Sleep Better,” focuses on helping students achieve quality sleep.

It was created to help academically overwhelmed students get back on track. Posey noticed how beneficial “Sleep More, Sleep Better” is as a resource to all students on campus.

Expanding the program allowed for preemptive opportunities to educate students about the importance of sleep, Posey said. This would ideally prevent students from falling into academic probation, which requires they attend the program.

Keeping in mind that college students have other priorities helped Posey and others in the department clarify the program, she said.

“Sleep is something that students tend to not prioritize,” Posey said. “They think of all the other things that they have to do with school, wanting a social life, work, family, and then sleep kind of comes last.”

The program maintains an understanding that some students aren’t willing to give up some of their extracurricular activities, Posey said. It initiates a conversation that attempts to foster a realistic approach to sleeping habits.

“We can talk all day about [how] research says these are the things you should do to get quality sleep,” Posey said. “But if going out and partying less on the weekend . . . [is] not something they’re willing to do, we’re like, ‘OK, then commit to something else’ [and] just pick something that’s realistic for them.”

This approach to the topic involves a less lecture-like structure and more group discussion, “letting them come up with essentially their own solutions for how to fix them,” Posey said.

Although anyone can schedule an information session through Health & Wellness, Posey said the majority of people taking advantage of the resource are in the Greek community.

She said the program is catered toward what the participants want to learn, from a general education on the effects sleep has on academic performance, to something as specific as alcohol’s impact on sleep cycles.

Posey said all the graduate assistants, health educators and health promoter specialists receive training in these programs.

This allows them to be prepared for conversations about novel ways to get proper rest. With this knowledge, students will ideally do better in classes and extracurricular activities, such as work and social life, Posey said.

She said students can reserve a classroom and Health & Wellness can come to mediate the conversation. Fraternities and sororities often use their own chapter houses. The “Sleep More, Sleep Better” program is able to travel to any group or organization on campus, she said.

Posey said she is passionate about people’s wellbeing, and she will try her best to help students better their lives by giving them the tools to properly care for their minds and bodies through sleep.