In this section, you will learn about:
- Different stress management techniques
- How to make responsible decisions
- How to stay healthy at UT
- How to stay safe at UT
- Center for Health Education and Wellness – Student Health Building, 2nd Floor (865-974-5725)
- Counseling Center – Student Health Building, 2nd Floor (865-974-2196)
- Student Health Center – Student Health Building, 1st Floor (865-974-3135)
- RecSports – TRECs (865-974-5165)
- The Student Success Center – Greve 324 (865-974-8285)
- UT Alert
College Safety 101
The best safety measures are those that you establish for yourself. With practice, they become a part of your everyday routine. Although there are no guaranteed methods to insure that nothing will ever happen, there are some steps you can take to greatly minimize the risk. Here are a few suggestions:
In Residence Halls
- Do not invite people you do not know into your room – think of your safety and the safety of other residents.
- Always lock your door when you leave your room – even for brief periods.
- Do not prop open exterior doors. Residence halls are locked for your protection.
- Do not let anyone walk in behind you. Everyone who should be in the building has Volcard access.
- Report any suspicious activity or persons to hall staff or UTPD.
On UT’s Campus
- Always lock your car.
- Never leave your valuables unattended.
- Study the campus and neighborhood with respect to routes between your residence and class/activities schedule. Know where emergency phones are located and carry a cell phone.
- Develop a plan of action to use if you were confronted or assaulted.
- Avoid walking alone, especially at night.
- When on campus, utilize the ‘T Link’ service.
- Never run in secluded areas alone.
- Register your valuables with UT Police through the Operation I.D. program.
- Lock your bike through the frame with a high quality locking device.
- Share your class/activities schedule with parents and a network of close friends, effectively creating a type of “buddy” system.
- Report suspicious persons or activity to UT Police immediately.
- Always let someone know where you are going and give an estimated time of return.
- Travel in groups.
- Make sure your mode of transportation is reliable.
- Do not give personal information to strangers.
- Do not accept drinks from anyone you don’t know.
- Avoid walking alone, especially at night.
- Do not give your name and address out to strangers.
- Do not give out personal information over the telephone to people you do not know. (SS #, credit card #’s, driver’s license #’s, address, etc.)
- Catch a ride with someone who has not been drinking.
- Don’t offer rides to people you don’t know.
- Always trust your instincts!
In the Digital World
- Never share pictures or images that you would not share with the world.
- Never share your personal or private data details.
- Never share passwords.
- Protect your computer with Internet security software, spyware removal software and strong passwords.
- Keep all security software up to date.
- Never click on e-mails from anyone you don’t know.
- Don’t click on anything that pops up in another window.
- Do not leave your computer unattended even in places that feel safe like the library, study lounge and coffee shops.
- Never chat with someone who isn’t your friend in real life.
- Use caution when accessing public wireless networks.
- Use caution when downloading free software and file sharing programs since they often contain malware.
- Trust your gut. If it feels wrong, it probably is wrong!
- Consider having your sensitive mail sent to your parents’ home, a P.O. Box or another permanent address.
- Utilize online banking to regularly monitor your financial accounts.
UT Police Department & Resources
The University of Tennessee Police Department is dedicated to providing a safe campus. The department utilizes police patrol, community service officers, and a comprehensive crime prevention program to promote a safe and supportive campus environment.
The UT Police Department’s Community Relations Unit (CRU) provides crime prevention programs at no cost in the areas of personal safety, substance abuse, DUI, and Rape Aggression Defense.
Community Service Officers are able to provide vehicle boosts or unlocks of your vehicle. The “T” Service is available for transportation during non-daylight hours to allow students the option of not walking alone.
The University has a comprehensive Emergency Management Plan that encompasses planning for incidents such as a pandemic outbreak, criminal activity, or a natural disaster. The UT Alert system is designed for students, staff, or faculty to be notified immediately by text message of an ongoing or active concern on campus. Individuals must choose to enroll in this program to be notified.
Take the time to secure your property and lock your doors.
Be aware of your surroundings and avoid unsafe shortcuts.
Contact the UT Police Department immediately if you encounter a suspicious person on campus.
Nutrition and Exercise
College is a time when you learn more about yourself and start to really discover who you are as an individual. This means finding new interests, hobbies and habits. You will come to school with knowledge and beliefs about some areas of your life and you may discover or gain more information on others. One of these in may be how to maintain a healthy and active lifestyle.
Being in college will offer you a new sense of independence that can open doors to new experiences. This can be a little daunting when it comes to what you’re fueling your body with and how often you are refueling. While you may be sharing your room with someone, nobody is going to be instructing you on when to eat, what to eat and whether or not five slices of pizza for lunch every day is a good idea. These are choices you will be making completely on your own.
Here at the University of Tennessee, the eating possibilities are endless! We have over 20 different dining options alone on campus, and tons more throughout the surrounding area. There is always going to be something to make your taste buds and stomachs happy. While the opportunities to eat surround you, there are, however, some key things to keep in mind when trying to remain healthy.
Start with Breakfast
Kick-starting your day with a healthy breakfast is a great way to prevent mid-morning cravings for sugary treats and help you focus on your classes. If you find yourself running late to your 8:00 amclass, keep some fresh fruit like a banana or apple, bread for toast, or maybe a pre-made protein shake stocked in your mini-fridge. Eating something nutritious throughout the day will help your stomach and mind be at ease.
Limit Fast Food
You might find yourself trying to find time running between classes, meetings, and studying. While stopping through the drive-thru might seem like the easiest thing to do, it can be unhealthy. When you do go, skip out on the French fries and other fried treats. Try getting a sandwich, lettuce wrap, or salad instead. Going out for pizza? Try toppings like olives, mushrooms, and green peppers; and if you really want meat, opt for Canadian bacon which is much lower in fat than pepperoni.
It’s easy to eat a bag of chips if that is what’s available. Instead, try i picking up some healthy snacks like almonds, fresh fruit, popcorn, pretzels, raisins, and granola bars. When that’s what you’re stocking up in your dorm room, it’ll be a breeze to snack healthy.
Consume at least eight eight-ounce glasses of water each day. Get a reusable water bottle and carry it around with you. It will help with your concentration as well as keeping you hydrated throughout the day. Check out the Brita Filtration Fountains around campus and drink up!
Check it Out!
Take some time and visit some of these interactive, self-assessment tools to learn more about your personal health and health risks. Please keep in mind that these are just to further your knowledge; they are not intended as a substitute for professional medical advice.
Aim for a Healthy Weight
Healthy Food Choices
Whether you’re eating in Presidential Court or on the strip, there are tons of choices constantly surrounding you. It’s important to have fun and explore the different dining options UT and Knoxville have to offer.
One of the many wonderful things that UT provides is attainable nutrition information for food items offered in the residential dining halls. You can check out the UT Dining page and look up the nutrition information for any meal served on campus, including all of the retail dining locations. We want you to enjoy what you eat while being aware!
One of the biggest adjustments you may face when coming to college is space. You may be used to having your own room and a kitchen in your house, or you may have shared space and your roommate is trying to adjust. Either way, it’s a change! One thing that doesn’t have to change is eating healthy. Though you may not have a lot of room, there are still many choices out there, so get creative and think of some new ways to get your nutrients.
Here are some fun meals you could try out! Let us know which ones you likeJ!
- 1 Slice Whole Grain Toast
- ½ Banana Sliced and Mashed
- 1 Tsp Omega 3 Peanut Butter
- 1 Tsp Cinnamon Powder
Start by cutting your toast into two strips; cut up and mash the banana in a bowl, spread peanut butter on toast and top with bananas. Sprinkle Cinnamon on top and enjoy!
Raspberry Greek Yogurt Breakfast
- One cup of your favorite kind of Raspberry Greek Yogurt (Some brands include Chobani and Yoplait)
- 3 Tbsp of fresh blueberries
- 1 Tbsp of Almonds
- 1 Tbsp of raisins or dried cranberries
Pour yogurt into a cup or keep in container, add in blueberries first and then pour in almonds and raisins. Stir and enjoy!
Pancakes in a Mug
(Makes 1 serving)
- 2 Tbsp whole wheat flour
- ¼ Tsp ground cinnamon
- ¼ Tsp baking soda
- ¼ Tsp vanilla extract
- 1 Whole egg
- 3 Tbsp milk
- 1 Tbsp oil
Mix ingredients all together in the mug, make sure to stir thoroughly. Microwave on high for 2 minutes. Top with a maple syrup or honey to taste and some fresh fruit.
Vanilla Grape Pudding Pops
- Handful of grapes (about 10)
- Tooth Picks
- 2 Tbsp Sugar Free Fat Free Vanilla Pudding
- 1 box of Raisins
Stick two or three grapes onto a tooth pick, dip into pudding. Sprinkle on raisins and place on a paper plate into freeze for about an hour.
Fruit Pizza Snacks
- 2 Unsalted Rice Cakes
- 1/ 4 Cup Strawberry Yogurt
- Fresh Fruit (cut in chunks)
Spread the yogurt onto the two rice cakes, top with fruit.
Pizza Pita Poppers
- 1 Whole Grain Pita
- 1/ 4 Cup Low Sodium Pizza Sauce
- 1/ 4 Cup Skim Mozzarella Cheese
Leave the pita whole, spread sauce on top, sprinkle with cheese. Pop in microwave for 80 seconds. Let it cool! Cut and eat!
Quick Taco Bowl
- 1/ 2 Cup Instant Brown Rice
- 2 Tbsp Steamable Corn
- 1/ 2 Avocado
- 1/ 2 Cup of Chicken Breast (or tofu)
- 1/ 4 Cup Pico de Gallo (Tomatoes, Onion, Green Peppers)
Follow the microwavable instructions to make the instant brown rice and corn. Chop up vegetables. Next heat the chicken or tofu in the microwave while brown rice and corn is cooling. Mix in corn and brown rice with vegetables, add in protein. Chop avocado and mix in last.
For more recipe options check out Choose My Plate on Campus for some new ideas!
Eating Healthy on a Budget
True or False: it’s too expensive to eat healthy. False! In order to eat healthy you don’t need to shop at the high end supermarkets and only buy organic food—though that’s a great choice if you want to do it. You can still eat a well-balanced meal on a budget.
Think of products that you can save for leftovers and use more than once. For example, beans. The average cost of a can of cooked beans is $1.19, and there’s an average of 2 cups per can.
Frozen vegetables are another great option for students, as they are easily affordable and can last for multiple meals. Some great options are the steamable types that can be popped in the microwave and come out freshly steamed with very little added preservatives.
For more information, check out some tips on How to Make Healthy Eating Easier on the Wallet.
When in Doubt, Ask for Help
UT has a wide variety of options of resources available for YOU! One of these is a Student Nutrition Educator. The Student Nutrition Educator works with students, faculty and staff to assist anyone who may be interested in learning more about nutrition or ways to eat healthy on campus. The best part about it? It’s all for free!! This is a service that you should definitely try out and take advantage of any or all areas of interest. Different services offered by the Student Nutrition Educator include: weight management, healthy-eating practices, heart healthy food, food allergies, and specialty diets.
Contact the Student Nutrition Educator to make an appointment at 865-974-4111 or email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
As mentioned previously, nutrition is just one part to living a healthy lifestyle. Another main component is staying active. UT is a perfect place to start learning and exploring how you like to stay active, or continue doing whatever it is you enjoy.
The RecSports Department serves the UT community by offering unique facilities and programs for almost any sport you could imagine. They strive to meet varying interests in cooperative and competitive activities, provide recreational activities to promote personal wellness, a place for social and cultural interaction, and the development of technical skills. There are six main facilities that make up the RecSports division. These include:
- The RecSports fields at Sutherland that includes two softball fields, four turf fields, three sand volleyball courts, and four natural grass fields.
- The TRECS is the main fitness gym that offers over 80 pieces of cardio and over 100 strength training stations. Everything from treadmills, elliptical, and bicycles to free-weights and a track can be found here. Basketball and volleyball courts are also located in the TRECS. An additional component are the Group Fitness Classes that can be taken for free! A valid UT ID or RecSports membership card is required.
- The Aquatic Center that features two Olympic size swimming pools, one indoor and one outdoor. A valid UT ID or RecSports membership card is required.
- The HPER is another facility that is home to different activities including basketball, badminton, racquetball, and volleyball. If you’re looking for a new workout or activity to get involved in: test out the Rock Climbing Wall located here as well! A valid UT ID or RecSports membership card is required.
- The Bubble is an additional 24,000 square foot facility for clubs and intramural sports located in an indoor location. A valid UT ID or RecSports membership card is required.
- The Outdoor Facilities that UT offers is a great place for you and some friends to come hangout and show of your skills for tennis, paddleball, basketball, and sand volleyball. There is a newly renovated RecSports Field with field turf that is open to individuals, teams, or informal groups.
If you’re looking for a great way to get involved in a fun, competitive way, check out the RecSports Intramural Sports Program. Grab a group of friends and form a team! Sports include flag football, sand volleyball, tennis, basketball, volleyball, soccer, bowling, dodgeball, racquetball, kickball, floor hockey, inner tube water polo, ultimate Frisbee, and much more. The majority of these options are FREE to UT students who have paid their student activities fees.
Another great option to stay active is to take advantage of the great outdoors that Knoxville is nestled in. UTOP is the University of Tennessee’s Outdoor Program. You can rent bikes, camping gear, climbing shoes, kayaks, and so much more. UTOP takes trips throughout the year and is a great place to start exploring the area. Feel free to check out their weekly activities page to see what their up to today!
Now that you are in college, you will be flooded with new opportunities, activities and organizations with which to get involved. You will have to consider your values and beliefs and start making decisions on that are right for you. Remember, you can choose, you do not have to follow. This section will explore responsible behavior practices that you can make around the areas of alcohol and sexual health choices. Seek to make choices that reflect your values and impact you and your community in a positive way!
Responsible Behavior: Alcohol Consumption
Whether or not you choose to drink, it is important to think through the following:
- How much alcohol will I consume tonight? Is that amount safe for me or others?
- How often do I plan on consuming alcohol?
- Who am I drinking with? Do I trust them to respect the choices I make? Do I trust them to look out for me?
- Where am I consuming alcohol? Is it safe for me to drink there?
- If you are not drinking, will you support those who are? How will you respond to offers, and will you be around it? Taking care of a drink friend takes time away from time spent studying, sleeping, or doing what you need to do to be successful at UT.
- Research has demonstrated that the younger you are when you first start consuming, the greater chance you have of developing a dependence on alcohol. Waiting till you are 21 to drink is smart & healthy!
- A person with an alcoholic sibling or parent is 4x more likely to develop a problem with alcohol than someone without a family history of alcohol problems. If you don’t know about your family history, take the time to talk to a parent or relative about your family history and alcohol.
- The more you consume alcohol in a condensed amount of time, the higher your tolerance will become. A higher tolerance means that the euphoric effect of alcohol won’t be reached without drinking an increased amount. Tolerance puts you at a higher risk of dangerous decision-making, because your body won’t give you the cues that you have had too much to drink.
Alcohol is the #1 date rape drug. If you see someone who has had too much to drink, Speak UP! and make sure they get home safely. Remember looking out for each other is the Volunteer way. If you want to learn more, sign up to become a certified SPEAKologist. Visit http://volunteersspeakup.utk.edu for more information!
- Alcohol can alter your normal development. Over a short period of time alcohol can damage your liver, bones, brain cells, cause memory loss and personality changes, as well as interfere with your growth and sex hormones. Excessive use of alcohol can poison your body and cause the brain to begin shutting down bodily functions that regulate breathing and heart rate, resulting in death.
- Alcohol poisoning is a very real situation. If you or one of your friends experiences one or more of the following, it is imperative to call 911 immediately; signs of alcohol poisoning include:
- Repeated vomiting
- Passing out
- Bluish skin color
- Irregular or infrequent breathing
- Cold to touch
- To drink responsibly means to take all of this and more into account. If you do choose to drink, be prepared going in. Here are some ways you can drink responsibly:
- Set a limit in advance, and stick to it! Consider having a friend keep you accountable.
- Have a designated driver. A designated driver does not consume any alcohol.
- Eat before and while drinking. Never drink on an empty stomach.
- Don’t bow to pressure. Be assertive in your decision to stick to your limits. Make your own choices!
- Alternate between alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks.
- Don’t set your drink down. This way you can make sure you know what is in your cup.
- A standard drink, how much alcohol the liver can process in an hour, is different depending on the type of drink and the physical attributes of the person (i.e. gender, weight, etc.)
- Alcohol can affect your academic goals. 99% of incoming in-state freshmen qualify for Tennessee’s lottery HOPE scholarship. HOPE requires a 3.0 GPA to maintain your award. Be smart, and don’t let alcohol affect your financial aid!
- Class attendance is the number one predictor of success in college! A degree from the University of Tennessee will require hard work, but you are up to the challenge. Nationally, 25% of college students report earning low grades, doing poorly on tests and papers, missing class, and falling behind due to alcohol use. Your goal is to graduate in 2018, and to accomplish your goal, you must start planning for success now! Keep your goals in front of you and don’t let the consequences of alcohol impact your future.
- You are at UT because you are academically excellent and capable of success. The decisions you make now will affect your future career. Put your academics first, develop a positive attitude about education, and engage in the process of inquiry, questioning, and exploration. Remember the five things a VOLUNTEER knows:
- A Volunteer who goes out with a friend, comes home with a friend. A Volunteer doesn’t leave anyone behind.
- A Volunteer figures out a safe way home before going out.
- A Volunteer eats before drinking to slow absorption of alcohol, provide energy, and lessen the next-day effects. A Volunteer represents the larger community.
- A Volunteer who drinks decides how much they will drink before they go out. They stick to their limits, keep their drinks in sight, alternate drinks with water, and find a friend to hold them accountable. A Volunteer knows what they put in their bodies.
- A Volunteer knows that sleep, exercise, food, and caffeine will NOT help them sober up. Only time can make them sober, and nothing can speed up the rate at which alcohol is metabolized in the body.
The Center for Health Education & Wellness seeks to engage students by removing barriers and connecting them with resources needed to achieve personal success. Through prevention efforts that inform, increase awareness, and educate the student body, the services provided by the Center seek to positively impact the university environment through evidence-based social norm approaches and environmental management. The foundation of the Center is grounded in the community model of VOLS HELP VOLS.
CollegeDrinkingPrevention.gov – Changing the Culture – is a resource for comprehensive research-based information on issues related to alcohol abuse and binge drinking among college students.
National Institute of Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) – provides leadership in the national effort to reduce alcohol-related problems through research coordination, collaboration and dissemination of research findings.
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) – works to reduce the impact of substance abuse and mental illness on America’s communities.
Responsible Behaviors: Sexual Activity
Will you engage in sexual activity? Sexual health decisions affect our emotional state, no matter what choices you have made in the past. It is important to take some time and think about what decision you want to make in the future.
Thinking it Through: This is YOUR Decision
It’s important to know that just because you chose one option in the past; doesn’t mean you can’t change your mind now. It also does not mean that answering yes to being sexually active with one particular person or situation means you have to say yes every time. It is your body and your decision, every time.
Whether you choose to be celibate or to engage in sexual activity, being aware and knowledgeable about what types of contraceptives are available for you is important. The two most common types are male condoms and birth control.
Male condoms are the most effective protection from most sexually transmitted diseases. The Center for Health Education & Wellness and the Student Health Center provide condoms free of charge, and they can also be purchased in many locations such as the UT Pharmacy, drug stores, and grocery stores.
Birth control is a hormonal contraception that comes in many forms; the most typical being in a pill. When taken correctly every time, there is a high effectiveness rate for birth control pills. However, the pill does not protect against all consequences of sex, such as sexually transmitted diseases. When choosing a birth control option, talk to your doctor.
Sexually Transmitted Infections
After giving yourself some time to think and process your decision, you may have decided to be, or continue being, sexually active. It’s important to keep your emotional health in check while engaging in sexual activity, as well as your physical health. You have already learned about contraceptives to prevent pregnancy, but some can also protect you from diseases and infections. Sexually transmitted diseases are common, especially among sexually active individuals between the ages of 20-24.
Know the Facts
- 1 in 2 sexually active young people will contract an STI by the age of 25 and most won’t know it or inform their partner (Center for Disease Control and Prevention).
- Roughly 1 in 6 people are infected with Herpes (Center for Disease Control and Prevention)
- More than 50% of sexually active people will get HPV at some point in their lives (Center for Disease Control and Prevention).
We at UT believe the best decisions are informed decisions. If you ever have a question or a concern, check out the Student Health Center or one of the options available in the area.
- Student Health Center
1800 Volunteer Boulevard
- Services include reproductive health offerings such as testing and treatment for STIs. Appointments are required, and there is a small charge for any lab work or x-rays.
- Center for Health Education & Wellness
1800 Volunteer Boulevard, Suite 201
- The Center for Health Education & Wellness provides educational resources on various health and wellness topics, such as sexual health, healthy relationships, STI awareness.
- Knox County Health Department
140 Dameron Ave
Knoxville, TN 37917
Hours: Monday- Friday 8:00 am-4:30pm
- The Knox County Health Department provides free testing, treatment, and education for gonorrhea, chlamydia, syphilis, and HIV.
- Helen Ross McNabb Center
- Helen Ross McNabb Center offers free HIV testing, education, and counseling
- Sexual Assault Center of East Tennessee
865-522-7273 (24 hour crisis line)
- Offers confidential sexual assault nurse examinations, advocacy, therapy and prevention education.
- Planned Parenthood, Knoxville
710 North Cherry St.
Knoxville, TN 37914
- Planned Parenthood provides STI testing, treatment, and services. Some charges may apply for services.
- AVERT is an international organization that provides online education about HIV, AIDS, other STDs and safer sex.
Stress Management Techniques
Stress is a natural part of life, and can sometimes be healthy. It pushes you to meet timelines, work hard, and do your best. However, high amounts and long-term stress can be overwhelming and can create a barrier to success. Some common causes of stress include moving, finances, friendships, housing, academic pressure, dating and sex, eating and nutrition, socializing, sleep, and time management. As a college student, chances are you’ve experienced some or maybe all of these possibilities.
Though stress can often feel like the weight of your whole world is coming down on you, there are some easy and fun ways to manage it.
Aerobic exercise is highly recommended to de-stress. Consider going for a run, taking a bike ride, or head to TRECS for a group fitness class. All of these are great ideas to relieve stress!
Participate in breathing control, meditation, deep muscle relaxation or massage, yoga, or a combination of any of these to get your body and mind balanced.
Avoid Alcohol, Drugs, Cigarettes, and Caffeine
Grabbing a cup of coffee from Starbucks at Hodges is a great way to keep you awake, but it also can cause your heart to race more and increase your stress. All of these things have an effect on your central nervous system and will not help calm your nerves.
Take Some Time for You
While studying and working in groups can be fun, it can also increase your stress levels. Don’t be afraid to set aside thirty minutes each day for yourself. Use this time solely to stop thinking about school or whatever else is on your mind, and do something fun. Listen to music, go for a drive, take a walk by the river or watch an episode of your favorite show. It’s important to give yourself a break!
For more ideas about how do de-stress visit the Center for Health Education & Wellness and check out the Survival Guide to Stress which was developed specifically for University of Tennessee students!
It’s okay to feel stressed for a short period of time, and it can often be resolved by completing a simple task or participating in one of the many ideas listed. Prolonged anxiety and stress, however, can seriously impair your academic performance and result in a lot of effort wasted. If you are suffering from long-term stress and anxiety, these feelings can be difficult to resolve alone. Our goal at UT is for you to be successful. If you or someone you know can’t seem to shake the stress, ask some of the following questions.
Have you or someone you know:
- Behaved in an aggressive or out-of-control way?
- Stopped talking or started spending a lot of time alone?
- Started drinking more or using drugs to deal with feelings?
- Talked about killing himself or herself or someone else?
Are you feeling:
- Uncomfortable or uneasy?
- Afraid for this person?
- Scared of this person?
- Worried something may happen?
Who do you call?
- If there is an immediate threat, call 911
- If the threat is not immediate but you are concerned, call 865-974-HELP (4357)