Change your password; Change your life

Remembering computer and other passwords can be an annoying part of modern life.  What if your password was a mantra to help stay focused on something you want to achieve?  It could be “BUILDNEWFRI3NDHIPS,” “BREATHE2RELAX,” or “MAKEDEANSL1ST.”   It would give you an opportunity to repeatedly remind you to keep working toward the things that make you happy.  And it might make remembering your password a little easier.

Smith, M. A. (2016). Calm; Calm the mind, change the world. New York: Harper Design.

Quick, Easy, and Healthy Snacks

Looking for new healthy snack ideas? You’veApple come to the right place! These snacks are convenient, delicious and will keep your energy up between classes.    Below is a list of healthy snacks that contain both carbohydrates and protein to fuel your body between meals, meetings, and classes.

Trail mix (nuts, dried fruit, & whole grain cereal)Fruit & Granola

Banana and nut butter roll up in a tortilla

Yogurt and berries

Pita chips with carrots and hummus

Cheese cubes and whole grain crackers

Pretzels or an apple and nut butter

Nuts, fruit, granola


Connect your Body, Mind & Soul

A new yoga studio is opening in State College. On August 22nd, Yoga Lab will open its doors.  It is located on 124 McAllister Alley.  Visit the website for the class schedule at

State College has a wide range of yoga options. Below is a list of a few studios in town.  All of them feature a different style of yoga, so explore and find the style that works best for you.  You may want to look into the Penn State Yoga Club, to connect with those who share a similar interest.

Yoga options in State College:

Sleep-Friendly Residence Hall Room

While living in a residence hall can be a lot of fun, it’s not exactly conducive to a good night’s sleep.  As you settle in this fall semester, consider the following tips for creating a sleep-friendly room.

Reduce or eliminate artificial light.  Artificial light can send messages to your body that it is time to wake up. Look around your room at night and identify sources of light such as street lights shining through the window, power buttons on electronics, or digital clocks.  Consider blocking these lights so that your room is completely dark while you sleep.[i]

Avoid using your bed for studying and socializing.  Strengthen your association between your bed and sleep by using your bed only for sleep (or sex). [ii] If you associate your bed with something stressful or energizing, you could find yourself tossing and turning. Study in the library and hang out with friends in common areas.

Communicate with your roommate. Talk with your roommate and develop a plan so that both of you can get the recommended 8 hours of sleep each night.

Pick up a free sleep kit from Health Promotion and Wellness, 201 Student Health Center.  The sleep kit contains an eye mask, ear plugs, and sleep tips.


[i] The National Sleep Foundation,

[ii] The Mayo Clinic,

Penn State Student Health Assessment Report – 2016

Do PSU students get enough sleep?  How about enough exercise? Are students eating enough fruits and veggies?

The answers to these questions and more can be found in the 2016 Student Health Assessment Report.  Data in the report are based on the American College Health Association’s National College Health Assessment (ACHA-NCHA) that was conducted at Penn State. The report provides information about PSU students’ health habits, behavior, and perceptions.

The survey was conducted in March 2016 with a random sample of 10,500 students.  Students were contacted by email and invited to participate in the online survey. The report highlights the responses of 1,776 Penn State students who completed the survey (a 17% response rate). When compared to the overall University Park student population, females, White students, and Asian Students were over-represented among survey respondents. As a result, caution should be taken when interpreting these data as the data may not accurately reflect the health behaviors of the University Park student population as a whole.

PSU Annual Report 2016

Student Health Center

It’s National Health Center Week!  Do you know what Penn State’s health center can do for you?  Most people know that the health center is the place to go when you get sick.  While this is true, the Student Health Center also offers a variety of services.  Here’s a brief description of what’s available in the Student Health Center, but we recommend that you check out the web pages for more information.Student Health Center

  • University Health Services (UHS) provides convenient, confidential and compassionate care for routine illnesses and more serious problems, such as high fevers and acute asthma attacks. UHS also offers routine physical exams, women’s and men’s health visits, and allergy services.  Students can get immunizations and pre-travel information.  UHS contains lab, x-ray, ultrasound and physical therapy.
    • The on-site pharmacy provides prescription and over-the-counter medications, including sunscreen, vitamins, hygiene products, and yoga equipment.
    • Health Promotion and Wellness (HPW) offers a range of services and programs, including a nutrition clinic, free HIV testing, and tobacco cessation. Students can stop by HPW for lots of free stuff including, a sleep kit and condoms.  You may also want to visit the De-stress Zone for a few minutes of relaxation.
  • Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) offers group therapy, individual counseling, crisis intervention, psychiatric services as well as prevention, outreach and consultation services.

The Student Health Center is located adjacent to the Eisenhower Parking Deck and the Bank of America Career Services Building.

Interested in getting involved?  Learn more about the volunteer opportunities available through University Health Services.


Heat Exhaustion

It’s already midsummer and temperatures are high.  While it can be fun to spend time in the hot summer sun, it’s also important to prevent heat exhaustion.  Common signs of heat exhaustion include confusion, dizziness and fainting.  To avoid heat exhaustion, drink plenty of fluids and take a cool shower.   More serious symptoms such as unconsciousness, lack of sweating, or seizures could be a sign of heat stroke which is a medical emergency.  Heat stroke is more common among adults 50 and older, but it can happen to anyone who is outside for a long period of time or is working out in high temperatures.

When the humidity is high, the heat index (or what is referred to as the “real feel” by some weather services), is higher than the actual temperature. The humidity hinders your body’s natural cooling mechanism by preventing sweat evaporation.  The risk of heat related illnesses increases dramatically when the heat index is 90 degrees or higher.

When the heat index is high, use the following tips to prevent heat exhaustion:

  • Take breaks in air conditioned spaces, when possible
  • Wear lightweight, light colored, loose fitting clothing
  • Use sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or more
  • Drink plenty of water to prevent dehydration



Source: WebMD,,

Mayo Clinc,

Benefits of local fruits and vegetables


Penn State is surrounded by farms which provide easy access to local fruits and vegetables.  At this time of year, the harvest is especially plentiful.  There are many reasons to buy local produce.

  • Consuming freshly picked fruits and veggies at their peak provides the best flavor AND nutrition.
  • Meeting the farmer has it’s perks. Have you ever wondered where your food comes from? Farmers markets give you the opportunity to greet and shake the hand of the farmer that feeds you.
  • Buying local supports a healthy and vibrant local economy.
  • Trying something new is always fun. Have you ever tried rhubarb or yellow watermelon? Local famers often provide fruits and veggies that aren’t commonplace in the grocery store.

The State College Farmers Market is a short walk from campus.  It’s on Locust Lane (between College Avenue and Calder Way) on Tuesdays and Fridays from 11:30am-5:30pm.  There are additional farmers markets in the State College area.

To find out what’s in season, check out this seasonal produce guide.

PSU #1 for Active Lifestyles

Take one glance around campus and you’ll see that Penn State students look quite healthy. Recently, that ‘look’ has been confirmed; Penn State students have been recognized for their active lifestyle efforts.  According to the National Collegiate Fitness Index ranking (NCFI), Penn State comes in at number 1!

With the numerous resources at University Park, it may not be any surprise that we are ranked so high. There seems to be something active and fun for almost everyone, from ballroom dance to table tennis and so much more. Check out all there is to do at

If you haven’t done so already, now might be a good time to make the commitment to be an Active Lion and become part of a Healthy PSU community.  Penn State’s Department of Kinesiology advocates for Exercise is Medicine each fall semester, encouraging students to make the pledge to move more and sit less #activelions (e.g. walk instead of taking the bus).  Show us how you are leading an active lifestyle on campus by using the #healthypsu.

Sue Crowe Memorial Arts Festival Races

It’s that time of year.  The sun is hot, the smell of kettle corn is in the air, and more than 100,000 visitors are in town for the local arts festivals.  In addition to the 300 artists lining the streets of Penn State and Downtown State College, the Central Pennsylvania Festival of the Arts includes a variety of musical performances, various food venders, and the 41st annual arts festival races.

The first arts festival race took place in in 1976 as a ten mile event.  Now named after local running legend and coach Sue Crowe, who died in 2006, the event includes a 5K, 10K, and 10 mile race. Races begin between 8:15am and 8:45am on Sunday, July 17th.  Registration costs $25 and can be completed online or in person on the day of the event.

Learn more about the Arts Festival at


The Sue Crowe memorial Arts Festival Races are sponsored by Penn State Health; proceeds benefit youth running activities in Centre County and the continuing operations of the Nittany Valley Running Club.