Graduate Student Life and Well-Being
Being a graduate student brings many personal and professional opportunities, but also challenges, from balancing course work with research or other scholarly pursuits, to building confidence in your ideas and capabilities, to the unexpected trials that happen in life. Focusing on your mental health and well-being can help you more successfully navigate past any obstacles you may face on your path toward your degree.
As a Penn State graduate student, you have access to free wellness services that are listed below.
Talk with a Graduate Student Wellness Specialist
- Faculty communication tips
- Imposter syndrome strategies
- Resource referrals
- Overall mental health check-ins
- Self-care tips and techniques
Meet Jacqueline Jones
Graduate School Services for Students
Individual Wellness Check-ins
A strength-based approach to holistic wellness and mental health promotion. Topics can include:
- Faculty/advisor communication issues
- Finding goals that are important to you
- Imposter syndrome improvement strategies
- Recognizing strengths and values
- Resources to enable your success
- Virtual breathwork and meditation sessions
Group Wellness Sessions
Sessions offered by request student groups.
- Discussions on wellness and diversity, equity, and inclusion
- Mindful movement
- Meditation and body scan sessions
- Student organization team-building activities
Graduate Student Wellness Programs
Programs are regularly offered to the graduate student community.
- Cultivating Healthy Boundaries
- Financial Literacy
- Imposter Syndrome
- Self-Care Fair
- Stress Management
Emotional and Mental Health
Finding care can be tough, and as a student, you have plenty of other priorities demanding your time and energy. Your university partners with Thriving Campus to help make it easier for you to know your options for care in the broader community around campus.Resources through Caps
Provides informal, drop-in consultation for students with counselors from Penn State Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS). Sessions are free and no appointment is necessary.
This library includes informative videos about various mental health topics. Created for Penn State students by Penn State CAPS clinicians.
Step-by-step wellness packages designed to help you navigate and demystify some of the more perplexing parts of being human. Instructors and student organization leaders are encouraged to use these for extra credit/points.
Penn State Crisis Line
- 24/7 confidential service
- Licensed mental health counselors
- Phone: 1-877-229-6400
Anonymous screenings on several areas of mental health, including depression, anxiety, academic distress, eating concerns, frustration level, family stress, and alcohol use.
Available to students at any time of day, from any location. WellTrack features a wellness assessment that students can take one time, or on an as-needed basis, to help them understand the activities associated with when they feel better and worse, and to identify patterns in their daily activities and how they are feeling.
WellTrack also includes programs that can be completed at a student’s own pace with content focused on Resilience, Anxiety and Stress, Depression, and Public Speaking. The Public Speaking program also includes a virtual reality component to simulate public speaking in a large classroom setting.
Coping tools on the site can be used to help students cope with distress.
Students can download the companion WellTrack app for iOS and Android.
Financial & Occupational Well-Being
Financial well-being is managing your resources, making informed financial decisions, and preparing yourself financially for the short- and long-term.
Career Services has a Career Resource Center and Career Resource Specialist to provide and assist you with career resources. Stop by the Bank of America Career Services Center or connect with us to ask questions about our resources.
Many students face challenges during their college careers. If you are struggling financially or experiencing food or housing insecurity, there may be state and federal assistance programs that can help. Our office can help you determine your eligibility for these programs and navigate the application processes.
Student Care and Advocacy assists students with financial issues and connects students to resources around the University. Our office tries to ensure that students are aware of deadlines, procedures, and resources that will help preserve their financial stability.
However, when students experience a personal crisis or an emergency, they may be overwhelmed by the circumstances of the situation and need short-term financial assistance. Penn State Office of Student Aid
Penn State’s single system recruiting platform for all students, alumni and employers.
The Pennsylvania State University Sokolov-Miller Family Financial and Life Skills Center’s mission is to provide students with the ability to use knowledge and skills to manage financial resources effectively for a lifetime of financial wellbeing.
You bring a unique set of skills and experiences to the table. Using a combination of general resources and those specific for veterans gives you leverage when searching for your next career opportunity.
Intellectual well-being is to explore ideas and experiences that stimulate learning and knowledge application
Here are some tips on improving intellectual well-being:
- Pursue meaningful activities
- Write poetry or a journal
- Reading, making artwork, playing puzzles & games
- Exploring different hobbies
- Finding opportunities to socialize, pursuing stimulating conversations with others
- Exercising, and finding excitement in pursuing new knowledge
- Limit television & computer time at home
Are you an international student, scholar or post-doc? Are you interested in improving your academic and professional English? Join us for EPPIC workshops on advanced academic writing, speaking, interaction, and job market preparation in English in a U.S. university setting. Our workshops are organized into the following skill areas (*earn EPPIC certificates for attending these workshop series*)
The mission of the Schreyer Institute is to advance and inspire excellence in Penn State’s teaching and learning community.
We are a collaboration of learning innovators who discover and advance technologies that engage learners.
The Graduate Writing Center: The GWC offers one-to-one consultations that are most useful to writers seeking ongoing support or consultations on shorter documents. Our sessions focus on principles of composition and strategies for enabling writers to independently improve their writing rather than “correcting” papers. We also provide several writing workshops each term that are open to the entire graduate student community. The GWC welcomes any graduate student attending the Pennsylvania State University, regardless of geographic location, English fluency, and/or discipline.
Visit library locations & departments across the Commonwealth & at University Park.
Welcome to the University Libraries! This page provides an introduction to our resources and services, as well as our library system. Some aspects of our library may be familiar to you, or they may be totally new.
Physical Well-BeingPhysical well-being is caring for your body to stay healthy now and in the future including making intentional choices around topics such as nutrition, physical activity, self-care habits, preventive care, sleep, safety and alcohol/drug use.
Yoga and Meditation
Join yoga instructor and doctoral student, Latisha Franklin, RYT 200, for yoga and meditation classes May 16 through August 8. This class meets weekly* on Mondays in 232 HUB-Robeson Center.
*No class May 30 or July 4.
Yoga supplies are provided, and no experience is necessary. All are welcome! You can watch previously recorded classes at your convenience!
Collegiate Recovery Community Peer-Support Seminars
These seminars meet in Room 105, Pasquerilla Spiritual Center, during the fall and spring semesters.
We offer services for:
• Healthy relationships and sexual health
• Nutrition/healthy eating
• Physical activity
• Stress (relaxation and time management)
- Community Seminars, 12-Step, and SMART Recovery Groups
On-campus 12-Step Meetings: Alcoholics Anonymous (A.A.) Meetings
This meeting is a "beginner's meeting," which means its format is more geared to those who are newer to A.A. This meeting is open to anyone with a desire to stop drinking, and it is "closed" to outside visitors.
Location: When the building is open, this meeting is hybrid: In-person attendees meet in 105 Pasquerilla Spiritual Center, and the meeting can also be attended using the Zoom link. When the building is closed, the meeting reverts to Zoom only.
Friends and Family Support Meeting
This group is for students at Penn State who are affected by another's alcohol and drug use -- a parent, a sibling, a partner, or a friend. This meeting is open to students from any campus by accessing the Zoom link here.
State College Area 12-Step Meeting
- A.A. Meeting List for Area
- N.A. Meeting List for Area
- Al-Anon/ Alateen Website
WE ARE a student-run group dedicated to supporting the recovery community at Penn State through personal growth, service, and social activities. To join Lions for Recovery, Contact Meredith at email@example.com