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New Office Champions Student Wellness

September 29, 2010 1:30 AM
Carol J. Schlueter

Two groups that help Tulane students focus on choosing healthier lifestyles have moved in together to bring a stronger focus on good health to the uptown campus.


In their new offices at theWELL, Meaghan Livaccari, left, and Scott Tims are planning a variety of programs to help students choose healthier lifestyles. (Photo by Paula Burch-Celentano)

The combined entity is called “theWELL,” the home of the Student Health Center's Wellness and Health Promotion Office and Student Affairs' Office of Wellness Services. Together they occupy suite 115 of the Reily Student Recreation Center, operating during evening hours twice weekly so that students can walk in with health-related questions.

Scott Tims says theWELL is about “focusing on the preventive side of health,” and does so by offering smoking cessation programs, planning late-night entertainment on campus as an alternative to the bar scene, educating students on healthy sexual practices, offering anonymous HIV testing and supplying other services.

Tims is director of theWELL and thrilled to be working side-by-side with the staff of Meaghan Livaccari, associate director of wellness services, who oversees alcohol education programs for the campus.

Livaccari says the move took nearly two years of planning. “It's really exciting, providing all the services for students in one place,” she says. “We're really focused on helping them to be the most successful they can be while they're at Tulane.”

In September, theWELL launched BASICS (Brief Alcohol Screening and Intervention for College Students). Led by the Office of Wellness Services of Student Affairs, BASICS is a collaborative project between the Student Health Center and other campus partners. Some students attend voluntarily, some have had a medical evaluation for excessive drinking and others are mandated to attend because of a conduct issue.

In BASICS, students attend small group and individual sessions. They also take an online assessment and the results are often “really an eye-opener. It can really bring out other issues the student is struggling with,” Livaccari says.

Tims and Livaccari are planning a grand opening event for theWELL on Oct. 18. For additional information check the website or call 504-314-7400.