Spring 2021: Academic Wellness Course

Students surrounded by books and plants reading and working on computers

Part of
The Liberal Arts in Action Series

Sessions are open to the entire LMU community. However, if you are a student who wishes to receive one-unit of credit, you must register through PROWL, and attend each session.

For those not wanting one-unit of credit, you may register one time HERE, and then attend any of the sessions you wish to.

The goal of the Academic Wellness series is to provide students (staff and faculty) with lessons from BCLA’s esteemed faculty to help them cope with the challenges of academic life, and to do so specifically during these unprecedented times.  Each speaker will illuminate how students can use academic experiences to better understand today’s challenges; and in turn, how to maintain academic focus while living through the challenges.  Faculty from various disciplines will ask the audience to actively engage and reflect on current issues.  The topics will cover issues of personal well-being and political and social contexts, and will include resources, tools and/or activities to help us incorporate the lessons into our lives at LMU.

Course Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of this course the students will be able to:

  • Develop self-awareness to make decisions relating to academic success.
  • Evaluate personal values and how they impact personal planning and academic goals.
  • Identify strategies to cope with academic challenges during these unprecedented times. 

Additional Course Info

The sessions will meet Thursdays from 12 - 1:30 p.m., beginning in February. The course will be a one-unit LIBA course that has 90-minute synchronous sessions. Grades will be Credit/No Credit. To receive credit, students must:

  • Register for the 1-unit course via PROWL
  • Actively participate in 5 of the 7 synchronous sessions
  • Complete a self-reflective paper

Faculty Speakers & Topics

2/11 Deanna Cooke & Janet Vera Lopez

Introduction and Maintaining Community

This session will serve as the introduction to the course.  Included in this date we will discuss High Impact Practices, along with practical tips for navigating LMU and BCLA. 

2/18 Evelyn McDonnell

All the News That's Fit: How to Maintain a Healthy, Balanced Media Diet

With a perpetual news desk clamoring for attention in our pockets, we could easily follow the headlines 24/7. It’s important that we pay attention to world events, but it’s also important that we control how, when, and where we get our information – and weed out the misinformation and disinformation. This session will offer tips on reliable news sources, best social media practices, diverse news feeds, and the importance of fact-checking. 

2/25 Mairead Sullivan

Mutual Aid: lessons from queer and trans organizing

Queer and trans people, especially queer and trans people of color, have historically been excluded from more formal and state-sanctioned support systems. In this face of such violence, queer and trans people continue to forge networks of care and support that circumvent established norms around kinship and relation. The Covid-19 crisis has brought more public attention to the failures of state support and to networks of mutual aid. Queer and trans people have always practiced mutual aid in many forms. In this session, we will discuss the ways in which queer and trans people fought for survival in the early years of the global AIDS crisis and the lessons from that work we might use today. 

3/11 Jennifer Ramos

Peacebuilding Lessons from Abroad

In this student-focused session, we will explore the challenging, yet critical, work of international peacebuilding in research and practice.  Through both large and small group discussions, we will examine what peacebuilding is, what it means to be a peacebuilder, and peacebuilding lessons learned from abroad. We will then consider ways in which these lessons can apply to our own lives.  

3/18 Brian Treanor

How to Behave, and Succeed, at University

What is the point of going to college? And what is the point of going to a Jesuit, liberal arts college? Once you are there, how can you get the most out of it? The vast majority of undergraduates in the United States have no better reason for college than “it’s what every middle class kid does after high school.” But, as your mother always told you, “because everyone does it” is not a strong reason for you to do it. This talk will address issues related to what you might call the “higher” goals of liberal education, as well as the more quotidian and practical matter of how to succeed in your classes and balance your life. In so doing, it should help you to come to a clearer sense of why you are in college, what you want to get out of it, and how to go about doing so. 

3/25 Stefan Bradley

Student Activism 2021: Maintaining during the struggle

Young people, by way of protests and demands, have been able to influence societies in major ways.  The uprisings of 2020 reminded us that student activism has been at the heart of social change efforts for generations.  Using knowledge from both past and current political contexts, we will explore how to maintain the movement for student activism and maintain oneself as a student.