Mt. A’s Wellness Centre offers a variety of resources available to students. The services offered by the Wellness Centre range from medical health services, sexual violence reporting and referrals, to mental health and wellness resources. Students can access the Wellness Centre on the lower floor of the Wallace McCain Student Centre, next to the Fitness Centre.
“We see popularity across all our services and a greater interest in the holistic approach to health and wellness,” explained Matt Maston, the Director of Accessibility and Student Wellness. Maston added that the Wellness Centre’s services surrounding physical, mental, sexual, and spiritual health seem to be the most popular among students.
Maston spoke about the mental health services that are available: “we also offer counselling and provide guidance in an open, supportive environment.”
Some of the medical health services that are offered include light therapy and massage therapy, and students can book appointments with the registered nurse and physician on campus by emailing [email protected].
Grace Tarrant, a fourth-year political science student, describes her massage therapy at the Wellness Centre as a positive experience. She said, “when I feel like I need a massage, I email the Wellness Centre and typically can get in within the next few days.”
The Wellness Centre recently offered a Pap screening clinic on campus, and Maston said that they “plan to offer this clinic again.” Maston spoke about the importance of offering Pap screening clinics by saying that “many of our students are in the age range that Pap screening should begin, it is important to offer preventative health measures.”
A sexual health resource that the Centre offers is STI testing. Due to the increased stigma surrounding STIs, students often hesitate to get tested, and so occasionally drop-in testing is offered. Drop-in STI testing clinics are beneficial because the resource is “aimed at students who may not have booked an appointment or are less likely to arrange an appointment in advance,” Maston explained.
Tarrant says that Pap screening and drop-in STI testing clinics are important in order to maintain good health. “Sometimes it’s hard to get access to these resources if you don’t have a family doctor nearby,” she added.
The Wellness Centre works closely with the group Navigate Mt. A. Eliza Nobes, who is one of the peer mentors on Navigate, explained that the group “is a peer-led initiative that helps students navigate resources on campus.” Navigate also organizes wellness weeks on campus, and Nobes reminds students to “stay tuned for updates about an upcoming wellness week.”
Navigate has previously organized events such as ice skating, snowshoeing, swimming, yoga, table tennis, and crafternoons during wellness weeks, which are deemed to be a success.
“It is important for students to be proactive with their health and wellness,” said Maston. Maston encourages students to visit the Wellness Centre’s website at https://mta.ca/current-students/health-and-wellness. Students are also reminded to follow Navigate Mt. A on Facebook and Instagram for more information about the Wellness Centre and their resources.