Tips for Grad Student Health


As the weather turns colder and the days get darker, it is easy to feel as if everyone is getting sick. You may feel the stress of the finalizing the semester, or are just having a hard time finding time to take care of yourself in the busyness of school, work, family, social, etc.

We sat down with Ryan Barfuss, prevention specialist in the Health & Wellness Center, to learn the best tips and tricks for staying healthy in college during one of the most difficult seasons of the year.

Tips for Staying Healthy

Take Preventative Measures

  • The Health and Wellness Center offers checkups, physicals, and exams. If you haven’t done so recently, you can go get your blood pressure, weight, and height checked for no cost at all. These are all very important numbers to know in order to maintain health.
  • The center also offers flu shots and vaccinations. The flu shots are only $20, which can often be covered by insurance.

Stay Active

  • Utilize the ARC. Exercising in the winter can make all the difference academically, physically, and in your mood. Exercising releases endorphins that will help keep your brain functioning well.
  • Exercise at least 30 minutes per day. This can be something as simple as taking a walk around the block.
  • Don’t make exercise so difficult that you talk yourself out of it. Start off small, and become more active as you work.
  • If you are having difficulty getting started, find motivation or incentive. This can be planning a hiking trip that you have to be in shape for, or allowing yourself a purchase as you reach goals. Treat yo’ self. Find your niche.

Focus on Nutrition

  • Have a balanced, healthy diet.
  • If you are having trouble with general nutrition or eating disorder, set up an appointment with the dietician at the health and wellness center. This is free for all students.
  • Keep your meals simple. The less ingredients the better. Look for meal ideas online.
  • Have at least one decent meal a day. Find a time where you can sit down and make yourself something good.
  • Try to plan and pre-prepare meals. This will help you have diversity in your diet.


  • Daylight savings can really mess up your sleep schedule. Make sure that you are getting enough sleep each night so you can function in classes.


Every month, all students receive the Student Health 101 newsletter. This email includes general health information and healthy, easy recipes. This can be a great resource to help you create goals each month that will help you live a healthy lifestyle.

Most students know that if they are experiencing mental health issues, that they can visit CAPS on campus. Fewer students know that there is also a psychiatrist at the Health and Wellness Center. “Stress, depression, and anxiety are the top things that we see here at the wellness center,” Barfuss says. Another on-campus resource is the Community Clinic located in the Psychology department on campus.

Health and Wellness Center provides many more services than listed above. They are able to check out anything medically related. If a specific professional is required, they can refer you to someone who can help. The center offers Women’s health and Men’s health services, birth control assistance, family planning, mole and wart removals, medication management, lab work, and much more.

“We want to take down any barriers. We don’t want you to just tough it out. We want to make it cheap enough and affordable enough as to where students can come in and get checked out,” Barfuss comments.

All services cost just the supplies that are used, which often will be covered by insurance. If you are unsure if your insurance will be able to assist, the in house insurance expert can help you out.

If you would like to visit the Health and Wellness Center, call for an appointment at (435) 797-1660.


Writer: Bentlee Rice | Office of Research and Graduate Studies |