Supporting the Whole Boilermaker Engineer
Fostering an emotionally healthy campus that supports the whole student is a priority in the College of Engineering. Our approach is to apply Active Mind’s framework that engages students as equal partners through student-informed, actionable, transparent and sustainable solutions.
Student-Informed Approach: Project Bloom started through a collaboration with the Student Mental Health Coalition composed of leaders of engineering organizations and coordinated through Purdue Engineering Student Council (PESC). In February 2020, the College of Engineering co-sponsored the inaugural student-organized Mental Health Awareness Week, which left a visible reminder of the importance of mental health - green bandanas that can still be spotted around campus.
Wellness Education and Mental Health Awareness: Engineering students are introduced to the science of well-being with a 360-degree view not limited to academic and vocational success and encompassing physical, emotional, social, intellectual and spiritual dimensions. Through a collaboration with Professor Louis Tay of the College of Health and Human Sciences and Steps to Leaps, modules on the science of well-being with an emphasis on growth mindset are made available to students. Engineering students can complete well-being modules for professional development credit in EPICS and VIP courses. A national experiment published in Science in 2019 provides evidence that growth mindset curriculum improves academic achievement. Since Fall 2020, the College of Engineering has been working with the Purdue Horticulture Plant Growth Facility to give out indoor green plants at campus events as a symbol of growth mindset and a reminder of the importance of self-care. Studies show that taking care of plants reduces anxiety and improves attention and focus.
Mentoring and social support: The Engineering Mentor Corps is a new initiative launched in Fall 2020 intended to help new students successfully transition to college. Peer mentors are juniors and seniors who help introduce new students to campus resources that have been proven helpful to them. Peer mentors receive training by Mental Health America – Wabash Valley Region (MHA-WVR) and are invited to professional development events featuring alumni and industry partners. Through a collaborative effort with MHA-WVR, student awareness of mental health resources available in the Greater Lafayette area is growing. The goal of this partnership is to create access to more personalized well-being and mental health resources that better fit student needs.