Raymond Arke | Staff Writer
Correction: An earlier version of this article incorrectly spelled the name of Dr. Ian Edwards and the Center for Student Wellbeing.
Students seeking help with physical and mental illnesses can get a wider range of care with the creation of the Center for Student Wellbeing.
Comprised of parts of Duquesne’s recreation department, Health Services, and the Counseling and Wellbeing Center, the new department seeks to give students a one-stop shop for care.
Dr. Ian Edwards, assistant vice president for student wellbeing and the director of the student counseling center, said the Health Services department will begin offering comprehensive care, which includes the hiring of family practice physicians and nurse practitioners, as well as a physician assistant.
These new employees will be able to focus on ailments common to a college campus, as well as treat medical emergencies, he said.
Health Services will now have the ability to prescribe psychiatric medications. This will cut down on the need for students to be referred to off-campus providers, according to Edwards.
Other departments are adding more programs as well. The recreation department will be offering new yoga classes which incorporate philosophy. Edwards said they will be focusing on “[encouraging] a more robust image of femininity.”
He said the new Center will help promote a person’s “wholeness.”
“The collaboration was needed so as to emphasize first and foremost the fundamental unity of the human person in his or her identity as mind, body and spirit,” he said.
The center hopes to keep students both healthy and happy, according to Edwards.
He added Duquesne is committed to creating people that will “meaningfully contribute” to societal evolution through “expansion” of their awareness.
There will be new features as part of this merge.
Another new addition will be the hire of a full-time wellbeing coach, whose role has yet to be defined, Edwards said. Also, a future goal is to create a central location for the new center — at the time, each department is still housed at its current location.
Dessa Mrvos, director of Duquesne’s Health Services, believes the merger will lead to better contact between the departments.
“Our office has always collaborated with our colleagues in the Counseling and Wellbeing office … [now] that collaboration will be more intentional.”
Under the new setup, Mrvos is optimistic that much more can be accomplished to benefit students’ health. She said it is now more convenient for a student to receive care from multiple on-campus sources.
“Students seen by counselors in Counseling and Wellbeing can also have their care needs continued with providers in Health Service, and vice-versa,” she said.
The Center for Student Wellbeing also offers students the ability to “have exercise ‘prescribed’ for them by our clinicians,” which would allow for them to be enrolled in Power Center programs, according to Mrvos.