Well-being lecture series aims to connect students with practical advice

by Rachel Wilson | Staff Writer 

Throughout the fall semester, six lectures will be happening as part of something called the “Well-Being Lecture Series”, covering mental health, sexual health, navigating your 20s, fitness, career wellness and spiritual well-being. 

According to Mark Baird, Psy.D., a clinical psychologist and assistant professor of psychology, the goal of the goal of the series is “to provide Whitworth students with evidence-based information on a variety of well-being topics and to promote the fact that well-being and health is inclusive of body, mind and spirit.”

The first lecture was given by Baird on Sept. 26. It was titled “Mental Health Access & Resources.” 

The goal of that lecture was “to demystify the process of deciding that one would benefit from additional support and then actually getting that support,” Baird said. 

Barid spoke about several mental health resources available to students, including the Whitworth Counseling Center and Psychology Today’s Therapist Finder tool. He also mentioned the new Whitworth Counseling Center program “Let’s Talk,” where short, informal counseling consultations are held all over campus. 

Baird’s message to students: “To take ownership of their well-being and engage in the myriad resources that are available to them.” 

The next upcoming lecture in the series is “Healthy Decision Making about Sex: Separating Fact from Fiction,” featured Robin Pickering, associate professor from the health sciences department. The event will take place on Tuesday, Oct. 15, in the HUB ABC room at 7pm.

Pickering’s goal with this lecture is to end common misconceptions and empower people to be informed. 

“Many people feel that discussing sexuality is taboo, which can contribute to folks being afraid to ask questions or turning to less than ideal sources like friends or the internet to get their questions answered,” Pickering said. “This can perpetuate a variety of myths and can place people’s health at risk.” 

Pickering’s hopes to convey the message to her audience that individuals have the power to bust myths about their health and well-being.

“Decision-making about sexuality is important and should include, among many things, consideration of science-based, medically-accurate information,” Pickering said.

The third lecture in the series will be held on Wednesday, Oct. 30 in the Crow’s Nest at 11:45am. It is titled “Twenties are Hard: Healthy Ways of Navigating This Time in Your Life,” by professor Joelle Czirr, senior lecturer of psychology. 

On Monday, Nov. 4, starting at 3:30pm in the HUB ABC room is the lecture “Simple Fitness” by Matt Silvers, Ph.D., an associate professor in the health sciences department. 

Silvers says the goal of his lecture is to “to relay some simple strategies one can use to improve his/her fitness and to explain the benefits of doing so”

Diving into career wellness, on November 18, the fifth lecture in the series is called “Vocational Wellness: How to Cultivate a Fulfilling Life & Career,” by Elizabeth “Bethy” Campbell, Ph.D., an associate professor of psychology. 

The sixth and final lecture of the wellbeing lecture series is titled “Faith & Flourishing: Spiritual Life and Wellbeing,” featuring Forrest Buckner, Ph.D., dean of spiritual life, and Kathy Storm, professor of psychology. It will be held on Thursday, Dec. 5 at 7 p.m.