Occupational Wellness

By: Kuldeep Derola, Francis College of Engineering Well-being Leader 

Read about nurturing occupational wellness for student health & well-being in this short blog post:

Realistic Goals:

It’s important for students to set realistic short-term and long-term career goals. These goals can provide motivation and a sense of achievement when reached, enhancing overall wellness.


Just as with physical health, taking breaks, practicing relaxation techniques, and ensuring proper sleep is vital for occupational wellness. Overworking and neglecting self-care can lead to burnout and negatively impact one’s health. 

Work-Life Balance:

Students should strive for a healthy work-life balance, allocating time for hobbies, relationships, and leisure activities. Maintaining this balance is essential for avoiding stress and burnout.

In Conclusion

Occupational wellness is not just about securing a job or earning a paycheck. It’s about finding meaning and fulfillment in one’s work, which directly contributes to a student’s overall health and well-being.

Visit me at my office hours to discuss this further: Southwick Hall-250 (Deans’ Office)

  • Monday 2pm-3pm
  • Wednesday 2pm-3pm
  • Thursday 9am-11am


Hannes Zacher and Antje Schmitt. ” Work Characteristics and Occupational Well-Being: The Role of Age.” Natural library of Medicine, 2016 

Zhang F. et al. ” Editorial: Occupational health psychology: From burnout to well-being at work” Frontiers in Psychology, 14 November 2022

Sharon Clarke. ” Journal of Occupational Health Psychology.” American psychological Association, 1998

The Dark Side Of Leadership: Overcoming Hidden Leadership Challenges All Men Must Know 

By: Fahad Alden, College of Fine Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences Well-being Leader

Hold tight. 

I’ve got a ride for you that could give a Tarantino-script a run for its money.  

I’m exposing the hidden pitfalls, unmasking the art of dodging cheap shots, and rebuilding you from a lone wolf to the leader of the pack.

  1. Finding Your Tribe: The Quest for Authenticity

 Navigating the labyrinth of adulthood and leadership simultaneously is a Herculean task. The world’s stage often hosts actors who, despite their lofty positions, are merely social climbers, a realization that continues to astound me. Some of these individuals around my age  perceived power as a pledge to an elite group , a pedestal to flaunt their supremacy and climb the social ladder.   

As a leader, the temptation to conform is omnipresent. My vibrant energy and candid honesty made me an anomaly among the ‘cool’ elected officials, akin to Deadpool amidst soccer moms. The allure of joining this elite group was strong, yet I resisted.

Instead, I blazed my own trail, seeking genuine connections over superficial alliances. My tribe –  – diverse yet harmonious, provided me with unwavering support and candid guidance.

They instilled in me the true essence of leadership: remaining true to oneself, fostering a supportive tribe, and providing unvarnished reality checks. It’s time to discard the mask and script and embrace your authentic leadership style. Ultimately, it’s the lives you’ve impacted, the differences you’ve made, and the stories forged in authenticity that truly matter.

  1. The Identity Crisis: Beyond the Titles

In the grand theater of life, we often find ourselves playing roles that are not our own, especially those in positions of leadership. The fear of pausing, of taking a moment to breathe, becomes a terrifying prospect. You worry that if you stop, even for a moment, you might lose an integral part of your identity.

 But here’s the truth: life is about balance. Just as socializing or romance shouldn’t be your only focus, neither should work. I recall my first identity crisis with startling clarity. It was a time when I questioned who I was beyond my titles and responsibilities. I found myself hiding my true self, censoring my stories and interviews, even altering my appearance and behavior out of fear of judgment or ridicule. Then came the turning point: rewatching Fight Club and hearing Tyler Durden’s wake-up call: “You’re NOT your damn job.” That was the game-changer, the adrenaline shot to the heart that kick-started my revival.

Once you engrave that truth into your mind, you stop chasing illusions and start embracing raw authenticity. You strip down to the bare essence of YOU. Celebrate your eccentricities, your hobbies, your passions—ignore the skeptics.Remember this: the only lifelong contract you’ll ever sign is with yourself.  When I finally embraced my true self, I found that I connected with more people and produced better work than ever before. So take it from me: embrace the adventure of self-discovery and authenticity—it’s worth every step.


Embrace your individuality, find your tribe, bear your scars, and let the world marvel at your fireworks. 

Remember, stepping up to leadership isn’t about changing who you are but refining yourself and using your position to affect real change. Cheers to you as you begin to navigate the course of leadership. 

Seize the day, not just for yourself but for those who believe in you.

There is Something for Everyone on Campus

by: Haiya Patel, Kennedy College of Sciences Well-being Leader

As many freshmen transition into college life, they must learn to adapt to their new lifestyle with more freedom, and more responsibilities. The increased amounts of responsibilities can also contribute to stress. The UML campus and staff have so much to offer to ease the stress of adapting to college. UML provides various opportunities to support stress management both physically and emotionally

In terms of physical self-care, the campus provides spin classes, yoga classes, a recreational center on both east and south campus, ping pong tables, court rooms for badminton and squash, basketball court, renting bicycles to get around the campus and many more. You can find all of these resources by visiting uml.edu/CampusRecreation/

The campus also provides support for emotional health . One of my favorite places to relax is to go to the Serenity Center for various self-care activities . The Serenity Center hosts fun de-stressing activities on Wednesdays from 4-6 pm. You can also use the massage chairs in the Club Hub UCrossing. You can also enjoy cultural clubs, career related clubs, and/or hobby-related clubs to enjoy with your friends. You can use these clubs as a means to find new friends with similar interests.

If you enjoy spending time with your friends, you can also have lunch getaway by the lawn next to Merrimack River, or on south campus at the Allen House overlooking the river.

There are also various study areas for students who enjoy either quiet areas or those surrounded by people. In most buildings, the bottom two floors can be a little more interactive, however the third floor of O’Leary is for quiet studying or to have group study rooms, as well as 3rd and 4th floor of Lydon.

Whether you’re looking for a way to de-stress or make new friends, or want a quiet place to study, UML likely has what you’re looking for. If you can’t find what you need, come chat with me during my office hours on Mondays and Wednesdays from 11-1 in Olney Suite 415 and I can help get you connected to what you need.

Maintaining Your Well-being Amidst Global Events

By: Doa Jamal, Francis College of Engineering Well-being Leader

Global events can deeply affect our emotions, leading to feelings of hopelessness, anxiety, sadness, and anger, especially in times of uncertainty, such as wars, pandemics, and political instability. Looking at the news may make us want to curl up in a ball and cry. It may cause us to want to give up hope that there will be change. It may make us think the world is a horrible, horrible place. 

While staying informed is important, it’s crucial to manage your relationship with the news and current events to protect your well-being.

Here are some strategies to help you maintain your mental health and emotional balance while staying informed:

1. Accept Your Emotions and Care for Yourself: Understand that feeling strong emotions in response to news is natural. Allow yourself to process and grieve when necessary. Take care of your physical well-being through healthy eating, regular exercise, fresh air, sunlight, and sufficient sleep.

2. Manage Your Relationship with the News: Constant exposure to news and social media can be detrimental. Limit the time you spend engaging with news and social media, possibly checking it once a day or twice a day. Try NOT to fall victim to doom scrolling.

3. Contribute What and When You Can: Feeling powerless in the face of global events can be distressing. Take action within your capacity, even small contributions can make a difference. Even something as small as making a donation or signing a petition can make you feel better.

4. Beware of Your Imagination: Avoid negative thought cycles by focusing on what is known today and what you can do now instead of imagining the worst possible scenarios.

5. Find the Good: Counterbalance negative news with positive stories, even though they might not make headlines. Recognize the kindness and goodness of people around you, the beauty of nature, and the support of friends and family.

6. Reach Out: Talk to someone about your thoughts, feelings and concerns. Just talking about it really helps to relieve some of that tension and stress. Talk to a loved one, a friend, a colleague, or a peer. You can talk in-private with a Well-Being Leader (we are here for you!) and if you’re looking for full confidentiality, you can speak with a professional therapist (UML Counseling Services).

By implementing these approaches, you can better navigate the emotional toll of global events without losing touch with what’s happening in the world.


UML Counseling Services: https://www.uml.edu/student-services/counseling/ 

Well-Being Leaders:https://www.uml.edu/wellbeing/well-being-leaders.aspx 

Reference: https://studentspace.org.uk/wellbeing/managing-the-impact-of-global-events

How To Deal with Stress

By: Sai Igiede, Zuckerberg College of Health Sciences Well-being Leader

Hello, a lot of you  know me, and a lot of you  don’t, so I might as well introduce myself. My name is Nosagiegbon Igiede, but I go by Sai to almost everyone.

I am here to talk about stress. I am someone who stresses a lot! Whether it’s surrounding my major or what I’m going to eat for dinner, I constantly stress. It’s something I have always struggled with and still do; however, I do manage it very well, and I want to help you by telling you how I destress from pretty much everything and anything.


I love to journal. I journal for a lot of reasons. Sometimes I write down dates and times for classes, and other times it becomes a creative outlet for me to express my feelings. I was actually recommended journaling by one of my long-term friends; he says that journaling is kind of like a book in your mind. Whether you choose to show the world or keep it to yourself, it should be a safe space to express yourself. This resonated with me for a couple of different reasons. Since I stress out about varying things, writing my thoughts down helped validate my stress in a way. It helped me find a balance between stressing over long-term goals and short-term ones, which is a big part of being stressed. But sometimes journaling isn’t for everyone, which is totally fine.


As much as I stress, I still try to find time to decompress by being alone. I know that it can be scary to relax alone for some, which is totally understandable. When I first started relaxing, whether it was in my dorm or even outside, I did it with friends who also needed to destress. Every time I would destress, it would be different. On some days, I would play video games for a few hours with my hometown friends. Other times I would watch the sunset on south campus with my colleague and talk about life and general issues, which for some is a great outlet.

Sleeping and maintaining a healthy mindset

Lastly, one thing I try to keep consistent with in college is the ability to sleep and have a clear mind. Now you are probably thinking, “Sai, I am taking a crazy amount of credits. How am I going to maintain a good sleep schedule and study?” Now, this is what I am going to tell you: Just sleep. I know it sounds weird, but sometimes sleep is what you need. If you deprive your body of the things you need, it will only negatively affect you. This directly correlates with mindset. Try to change the way you think about college. Instead of dreading classes and negatively speaking things into existence, try to first change your language and tone. For example, instead of saying, “I really don’t like this class,” try saying, “Why don’t I like this class? Is it the material I am not understanding? How can I personally improve?”.

One thing I want you to know is that it’s okay to take a break. Whether it is for 10 minutes or an entire mental health day, just know that it’s okay to not be studying all day every day. It is okay to not get a perfect score on a test or not have 100 friends by the end of the month; college is hard for a plethora of reasons. It’s okay to not have everything figured out.

How to Create SMART Goals

By: Yashvi Patel, Kennedy College of Sciences Well-being Leader

I learned about this activity in my psychology class, and I thought I’d share! It is super relevant and can be useful to college students like us who often find themselves juggling different responsibilities. This activity revolves around assessing and improving our life balance across different dimensions of wellness: spiritual, physical, financial, intellectual, emotional, social, environmental, and spiritual. We were told to envision the different dimensions of wellness on a wheel and how a wheel would run smoothy only if it’s well-balanced.

For this activity, you want to focus on one specific area (dimension of wellness) and craft a SMART goal related to that specific area. A SMART goal has 5 essential components”

S stands for specific

  • You want to start by setting a clear, concise, well-defined goal
  • Define specific actions you will take towards achieving that goal
    • What is something you can do towards that area?
      • For example, I wanted to target my financial wellbeing
      • For my specific action, I chose to spend less money on superficial (materialistic) items

M stands for measurable

  • You want the make sure the goal is measurable
  • What metric or dimension of the behavior will you collect data on?
    • For my financial example, I planned on recording the number of times I swiped my credit card on nonessential expenses like clothing or coffee

A stands for attainable

  • You want your goal to be realistic and align with your current behavior  
  • Questions to ask yourself are what is my current baseline or level of engaging in that behavior? What should your goal be based on your baseline?
    • I currently spend money on coffee four times a week. I aim to reduce it to two times a week. I shop every two weeks; I can aim to cut it down to once a month.

R stands for relevant

  • You want your goal to relate to your larger life objectives  
  • Does this behavior you’re addressing contribute to achieving your overall wellness in that specific dimension?
    • For me, spending less will improve my financial health by enabling me to save money for future investments and more significant expenses

T stands for time-bound

  • Put a time frame for completing the action
  • How long will you maintain this goal for?
  • Maybe if you are introducing a new behavior to your routine, consider starting with a shorter frame time before committing to a longer one
    •  I want to follow my spending reduction plan for a month

By following the SMART goal framework, you’ll not only gain clarity on what you want to achieve but also increase your chances of success in college. This activity will help you take deliberate steps towards enhancing different dimensions of your well-being, ultimately leading to a more balanced and fulfilling life.


Li, Anita. “Measuring behavior.” 6 0ct. 2023, University of Massachusetts Lowell. Lecture.

How Getting Involved on Campus Changed My Life

By: Angel Molekunnel, Manning School of Business Well-being Leader 

Getting involved on campus has been one of the most transformative experiences of my college journey. Initially, like many students, I had my reservations and fears about putting myself out there, but as I look back, I can’t emphasize enough how much it has enriched my life in various ways.

First and foremost, getting involved on campus has helped me build a sense of belonging and community. College can be a daunting place, especially if you’re far from home or attending a large institution. Joining clubs, and organizations, and participating in campus events provided me with a network of like-minded individuals who shared my interests and passions. These connections quickly turned into friendships that provided a support system during both the highs and lows of my college experience.

Before I joined UMass Lowell. I was nervous about joining clubs and organizations as well. I started off joining as a member. Eventually, I realized I enjoyed getting involved on campus as it helped me grow my networking circle, have fun, and stay busy. Eventually, I started applying and got accepted into the e-board roles that I truly enjoy.

I am passionate about everything I do on campus and I believe in my ability to do more. I want to inspire others and remind them to not hide their strengths and always seek out opportunities. Currently, I hold the positions of being the  Vice-President for the Student Government Association, Director of Personal Development for Joy Tong Women in Business, Resident Advisor (RA), Well-Being Leader, Student Alumni Ambassador, and Bumble Ambassador. I am very much passionate about these organizations as I get to influence those around me. Please reach out to or book a well-being leader appointment if you need help with how to get started. 

Below find some tips on how to start getting involved: 

It is common to have fears or anxieties about getting involved on campus, especially if you’re new to a college or university. Baby steps are crucial! Begin with low-pressure activities or events. Attend a casual club meeting, join a study group, or participate in a one-time campus event. Starting small can help you build confidence gradually.

We know ourselves better than anyone else. This is why you should explore your interests. Find clubs, organizations, or activities that align with your interests and passions. It’s easier to get involved in something you genuinely care about.

In conclusion, I can say with confidence that getting involved on campus has been instrumental in shaping my college experience. It has provided me with a sense of belonging, personal growth, academic enrichment, and countless memories that I will carry with me throughout my life. So, if you’re on the fence about getting involved on campus, I wholeheartedly encourage you to take that leap of faith. The rewards and opportunities that await you are boundless, and the journey is well worth it.

Connect with me Linkedln- https://www.linkedin.com/in/angel-molekunnel-9897241b3/

Use Engage to join clubs- https://umasslowellclubs.campuslabs.com/engage

My office hours to discuss tips to get involved on campus- are Monday and Wednesdays 11 am to 1 pm

Location: Cumnock 110/ Student Preference

Emotional Wellness

By: Kuldeep Derola, Francis College of Engineering Well-being Leader 

Let’s explore the dimension of “Emotional Wellness” in a short blog post:

Nurturing Emotional Wellness

Emotions are an integral part of the human experience. They color our perceptions, guide our decisions, and shape our interactions with the world. How we handle our emotions plays a pivotal role in our overall well-being, making “Emotional Wellness” a crucial dimension in the wheel of wellness.

Understanding Emotional Wellness

Emotional wellness isn’t about being happy all the time or suppressing negative emotions. It’s about developing a healthy relationship with your feelings, learning to recognize and express them constructively, and finding balance amidst life’s ups and downs.

Practice Self-Compassion

Be kind to yourself. Remember that it’s okay to feel a wide range of emotions, even the ones society labels as “negative.” Self-compassion involves treating yourself with the same kindness and understanding that you would offer to a friend facing a similar situation.

In Conclusion

Emotional wellness is a lifelong journey, and it’s perfectly normal to have both good and challenging days. By prioritizing self-awareness, self-compassion, and healthy coping strategies, you can take significant steps toward nurturing your emotional well-being. Remember that it’s okay to ask for help when you need it. Embracing emotional wellness can lead to a more balanced and fulfilling life, where you are better equipped to handle life’s inevitable emotional rollercoasters.

My Office location and office hours: Southwick Hall-250 (Deans’ Office)

  • Monday 2pm-3pm
  • Wednesday 2pm-3pm
  • Thursday 9am-11am


Smith, John. “The Importance of Emotional Wellness.” Healthline Media, 15 May 2022 

Doe, Jane. “Exploring the Relationship Between Mindfulness and Emotional Wellness.” Journal of Positive Psychology, vol. 10, no. 2, 2018, pp. 127-140.

Coping with Homesickness in College

by: Medi Woldemichael, Manning School of Business Well-being Leader

Starting college and still in the thick of it? Big adventure, right? As someone who came from a different country to study here, I remember the first time I walked onto campus. It was a crazy mix of feelings! I was super excited, a bit nervous, and really curious about everything. But there was one feeling I didn’t expect to hit me so hard: missing home.

I know I’m not the only one. Whether you’re from another city, state, or country, a lot of us miss the familiar stuff from home. If you’re feeling this way, here are some things that helped me get through it, and they might help you too.

Get Involved on Campus.
When I first decided to actively participate in clubs and campus activities, I wasn’t sure what to expect. But, looking back, it was one of the best decisions I made. Not only did it give me a sense of belonging in this new environment, but it also introduced me to some amazing people. I met a bunch of good friends through these activities. One of the professors I got to know during a campus event is now my mentor!

If you’re unsure where to start, check out the UML Engage website. It has a list of all the ongoing and upcoming activities and clubs. Also, follow different university-related Instagram pages like @umlactivities. They often post updates and event announcements which can be super helpful to stay in the loop.

You’re going to be in college for around 4 years, so why not make the most of it? Go beyond your dorm or usual hangout spots. The campus is packed with hidden spots waiting for you to discover. The Campus Recreation Center frequently has activities to keep you active and engaged. Don’t forget to check out Fox Common on east campus and @umlace; they’re always full of events and things to do.

Outside of campus, Lowell’s downtown area has a rich mix of food from different cultures – there’s a dish for everyone. Looking for a change of scenery? The train station isn’t far from campus. Take a train, and soon you’ll find yourself in Boston, with a whole new city to explore!

Reflect on Your Purpose.
Whenever you feel overwhelmed, reconnect with the reasons you chose this college journey. This reflection can offer clarity and motivation during moments of doubt. Adapting to a new environment, is no small feat. You can always set an appointment with on-campus well-being leaders who are there to guide and support you.

Embracing the experience, staying connected, and focusing on personal growth can guide you through the challenges of homesickness, making your college journey more rewarding. Coming from another country these are the exact strategies I used to overcome my own homesickness. By sticking to these principles, I navigated through the challenges and made my college journey much more meaningful and significant.

Time Management Tips & Strategies

By: Fajr Zahid, Zuckerberg College of Health Sciences Well-being Leader

Time management refers to the utilization of time in an efficient and productive manner, often resulting in better outcomes related to academics, work, interpersonal relationships, and even health. While it is easy to get side-tracked or procrastinate upcoming tasks and assignments, improving your time management skills can be highly beneficial in your daily life. Below are some tips and strategies that may help you manage your time better, and in turn help you lead a more stress-free and productive life, especially during the school year.

1) Creating a calendar: This allows you to remember dates of important events or appointments you must attend to. By visualizing these on a calendar (whether it is online or physical print), you can create a better sense of what your schedule looks like on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis. Additionally, you can have a better understanding of which days you tend to have more free time and which you can dedicate towards any hobbies or relaxing activities.

2) Using an academic planner: Academic planners, similar to a calendar, are a great tool for organizing your school-related tasks specifically. Here, you can write down upcoming homework assignments and exam dates, which can help keep track of what you need to get done for each one of your courses. It can also help you determine the best time for you to complete your assignments and study for your exams, instead of cramming it all in one day.

3) Prioritization: In instances where you feel as though you do not have enough time to complete required tasks, or to submit assignments before their deadline, it is important to learn how to evaluate your priorities. Working on tasks or assignments that require little time and effort first can help to relieve the overall burden and workload, and will allow you to dedicate your ultimate focus on any bigger tasks you need to complete. However, if you do not think you can fit everything into your schedule, it may be best to push aside these simpler tasks and focus on bigger priorities that hold more weight or value.

4) Making time for self-care activities: While it is important to be able to manage your time effectively in order to complete work or school related tasks, it is just as important to make time for yourself throughout each day or week. Make sure you are engaging in activities for yourself, and making your health and well-being a priority in the midst of all of your workload and responsibilities. This may look like hanging out with friends or family, reading a book, playing a sport/going to the gym, watching your favorite TV show or taking a nap.

5) Reaching out: Don’t hesitate to reach out to someone if you feel that you are not able to manage your time as effectively or efficiently as you would like, or if you find yourself feeling under pressure as a result of this. Time management is not an easy skill, and it takes practice to learn what works best for you! Remember, there is always someone willing to help and support you when times get tough, including myself! Feel free to set up an appointment with me using my Calendy link: https://calendly.com/fajr_zahid/30min. I am more than happy to assist you in improving your time management skills, or any other aspect of your health & well-being that you would like to discuss!

Be sure to join me in HSS 107 on October 3rd from 12-1pm for a Zuckerberg College of Health Sciences Time Management Workshop!