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Wellness - Overview

Page history last edited by Rachayita Shah 1 year, 8 months ago

Front Page / Bonner Program Resources / Training and Enrichment / Wellness 




Overview  |  Guides  |  Campus Examples  |  Documents to Download


This section is designed to discuss how wellness is integral to the Bonner Network's view of student development. In order to fully embrace the Bonner Network's commitment to being a platform for "Access to education and Opportunity to Serve," it is important that Bonner students and staff members develop and incorporate a balanced approach to managing life. Our program rests upon the fundamental belief in the importance of human potential and holistic personal development. Moreover, it rests upon the belief that all people deserve to have lives of wellness and wholeness. Wellness is important not only to individuals but also to communities. It is the emphasis on wellness and balance, while recognizing the stressful nature of our work, that enables Bonner students to excel as leaders on their respective campuses and community service placements.


The Bonner Network has defined wellness as consisting of three distinct components:


  • Well-being:  Refers to characteristics of positive mental health that are measured by purpose in life, supportive social relationships, feelings of efficacy, and optimism about the future (Checkoway, 2011). 
  • Thriving: Refers to well-being in multiple areas - physical, emotional, social, and psychological. It involves wisdom, appreciation of wonder, and being able to bring purpose and compassion into your life (Huffington as cited in Hayes, 2015).
  • Resilience: The process of adapting well in the face of adversity, trauma, tragedy, threats or significant sources of stress — such as family and relationship problems, serious health problems or workplace and financial stressors (American Psychological Association, 2017).


It is important for wellness to be discussed in relation to higher education and initiatives that support higher education, such as the Bonner Foundation, because mental heath issues are becoming more prevalent amongst college aged and attending populations in the United States of America.  According to the American Psychological Association (2013), anxiety is the top presenting concern among college students (41.6%), followed by depression (36.4%) and relationship problems (35.8%).  


     The Bonner Network has adopted the following statement on wellness:


In order for students to commit fully to the mission of the Bonner Foundation they need to be mindful of their own well-being and need for self-care.  Wellness is important to the Bonner Network because our students must learn how to balance their lives, prioritize their academic, civic and personal responsibilities, and model productive behaviors in the settings in which they serve and learn.


This section, the Overview, contains two powerpoint presentations describing the Bonner Foundations burgeoning wellness project - one PPT is designed for staff and the other is designed for students.  In addition, guides have been developed and placed under the Guides  tab to help staff and students lead trainings and discussions about wellness on their campuses.  Examples of what colleges and universities are doing around the country, and within the Bonner Network, can be located under the Campus Examples tab.  A large and varied amount information has been placed under the Documents to Download for tailored use within your campus-based programs.