Harper College

Wellness Dimensions

Health and wellness are important components to overall personal and professional success. Wellness is not merely the absence of illness or distress — wellness is striving for positive physical, mental and social well-being.

Circular graphic with circles surrounding a centered "Wellness" titleWellness is an iterative and lifelong process consisting of making decisions and choices that support a more harmonious life.

In turn, striving for a harmony that is right for you and one that encompasses a variety of wellness dimensions enables you to maximize your potential and overall success. While physical health is an important component to overall wellness, there are several other dimensions that contribute to an individual’s well-being. To learn more, check out the 8 Dimensions of Wellness below or watch this short video!

Emotional Wellness

Emotional iconEmotional wellness refers to the recognition, awareness, and acceptance of one’s own feelings and includes your thoughts, emotions, and ability to adapt to life's challenges. The emotional dimension focuses on striving for positivity and happiness through an optimistic approach to life. Emotional wellness inspires self-care, relaxation, stress reduction and the development of inner strength. It is important to be attentive to both positive and negative feelings and be able to understand how to handle these emotions. Emotional wellness also includes the ability to learn and grow from experiences and encourages autonomy and proper decision-making skills. Emotional wellness doesn't mean we won't or shouldn't experience difficult emotions, rather, emotional wellness focuses on using positive coping strategies to assist us in moving through those life challenges in a healthier and more productive way. 

  • Learn to become aware of, and accepting of, a wide range of feelings in self and others
  • Develop interpersonal and intrapersonal skills to support life-long resiliency in response to life transitions
  • Learn techniques in stress management and mindfulness
  • Develop personal decision-making skills based on the integration of thoughts, feelings and behaviors
  • Hawks Care Resource Center and Counseling Services provides emotional wellness resources and support for students.
  • The Employee Assistance Program (EAP) at Harper College is managed by Workplace Solutions
  • LifeSpeak is a health, wellness and professional development platform to give Harper employees and their families instant access to expert advice on a wide range of topics.
  • WellTrack is a free resource that is available to all Harper students. WellTrack is a self-guided and interactive way to manage your mental well-being. It is an online tool designed to help you understand your feelings of stress, anxiety, or depression. WellTrack is confidential, anonymous, and secure. 

Environmental Wellness

Environmental iconEnvironmental wellness is the ability to recognize our own responsibility for the quality of the air, the water, the land that surrounds us, and the people that surround us. The ability to make a positive impact on the quality of our environment, be it our homes, our communities or our planet contributes to our Environmental Wellness. Environmental wellness is about occupying pleasant, stimulating environments that support well-being. Focusing on environmental wellness means that you become aware of the relationships with your habits, actions and interactions and how those can affect and impact the environment you live in.

  • Become aware of how surrounding environments (internal and external) affect individuals and communities
  • Formulate and restructure environments to more effectively support and reinforce personal needs
  • Develop an awareness of individual and community contributions and impact on the outdoor environment, wildlife, and the future of local, national and world-wide resources and climate and ecology
  • Learn how you can be more environmentally friendly at Harper and beyond by becoming more involved with Harper's Sustainability efforts.
  • Check out sustainability within the classroom projects at Harper and plant-based recipes. 
  • Harper College is committed to providing an environment that is respectful and supportive. To report a concern, click on the appropriate report button on the Student Conduct webpage, complete the form and submit.
  • Harper College worked with the community to develop the FY2021-FY2024 Strategic Plan. The plan sets a strategic course for the College as it strives to achieve its vision as an innovative and inclusive institution, the community’s first choice and a national leader for student success.

Financial Wellness

financial iconFinancial wellness is the ability to feel satisfaction about your financial situation and to manage what we currently have in a responsible manner. Finances are a common stressor for people, so being able to minimize worry about this aspect of your life can enhance your overall wellness. It's important to continually plan out your finances both in the short and long-term.

  • Develop an understanding of financial aid, loans and scholarship programs and processes
  • Learn the basics of how to manage a budget, credit cards, checking and savings accounts, investments and identity protection
  • Become knowledgeable about resources available on campus when experiencing a financial management issue or economic crisis such as food insecurity, homelessness, transportation or educational supplies
  • Financial Aid and Scholarships for Harper students
  • The Hawks Care Resource Center can help students access food, counseling, financial, and other resources during this time.
  • Paying for College: Focus on your goals instead of worrying about affording college. Harper's tuition is just a fraction of the cost of other universities and we can help you find ways to cover tuition and living expenses by taking advantage of scholarships, grants, flexible payment plans, military benefits and work-study opportunities. When life gets in the way, our team of experts is here to assist you.
  • Personal Finance Tips and Tools
  • The Women's Program at Harper provides education planning, financial assistance and ongoing support for single parents, a non-traditional career seeker, women fleeing intimate partner violence and women with limited English skills pursuing coursework at Harper. 

Intellectual Wellness

Intellectual iconIntellectual wellness focuses on engaging oneself in activities, classes or experiences that challenge our thinking and knowledge about the world and our surroundings. Engaging with others from diverse backgrounds and perspectives, in addition to using individual personal creativity to explore and innovate, can contribute to the intellectual wellness dimension. Intellectual wellness focuses on pushing ourselves to ask questions, be curious, challenge our own ways of thinking, observe, listen, develop new ideas and become life-long learners. Learning doesn't stop at college as we all continue to grow and learn throughout our lives.

  • Develop knowledge and skills in academics, self - efficacy, studying, time management, stress management, note taking, listening, and public speaking
  • Expand ability to create, develop, analyze, critique, concentrate, understand, evaluate, problem solve, predict, comprehend, etc.
  • Become knowledgeable about academic support resources available on campus
  • Whether your interests lead you to pursue Arts and Music, Career Development, Health care, Lifelong Learning, Personal Interests or Technology, Harper's Non-Credit Community Education will help you Become More.
  • Harper has 10 Areas of Interest for you to explore. Which one is right for you? It depends on many factors: your career or transfer goals, your values and your interests. Review the Programs of Study within each Area of Interest to learn more.
  • Harper's Library provides technology loans, research assistance, live chats with librarians, programming and much more to assist students with their academic endeavors. 
  • There are several academic support areas and services to help ensure student success at Harper College.

Occupational Wellness

Occupational iconOccupational wellness is the ability to receive personal fulfillment, purpose and satisfaction from our jobs or our chosen career fields while still maintaining a sense of balance in our lives. Our desire to contribute in our careers and to make a positive impact on the organizations and communities we work in lends itself to occupational wellness. Sure, a paycheck is an important part of a job. However, occupational wellness focuses on our ability to find meaning in our jobs and knowing that we are making a difference in the world.

  • Explore their Areas of Interest, skills and values related to choice of career/major
  • Develop effective job-related skills in assertiveness, time management, active listening, and motivation
  • Gain direct knowledge of career and job opportunities within Harper’s district
  • Gain knowledge of transfer opportunities and gain experience through workshops, speakers and field trips
  • Harper College provides employees with free access to LinkedIn Learning, which is an online educational platform that helps employees discover and develop business, technology-related, and creative skills through expert-led course videos.
  • Whether you are a currently enrolled Harper student or an alumni with a degree or certificate, the Job Placement Resource Center is here to support your career goals and needs by offering assistance with resumes, internships, interviewing, job search and much more. 
  • The Hire A Hawk database is an online job management system for Harper students and alumni. Here you can search for jobs, internships/co-ops, upload your resume and much more. 
  • Harper offers employment opportunities for current and future employees and students. Learn more about opportunities and jobs that are available at Harper through the Human Resources page. 

Physical Wellness

physical iconPhysical wellness is the ability to maintain a healthy quality of life that allows us to get through our daily activities without undue fatigue or physical stress. The ability to recognize that our behaviors have a significant impact on our wellness and adopting healthful habits (routine check-ups, a balanced diet, exercise, etc.) while avoiding destructive habits (tobacco, drugs, alcohol, etc.) will lead to optimal physical wellness.

  • Know how and where to access and seek medical care when needed for illness, injury and preventative care
  • Incorporate and engage in regular movement and leisure activities to improve flexibility, strength, aerobic, and cardiovascular health
  • Become more informed and aware of how various foods, beverages, alcohol and other drugs, caffeine, chemicals and other substances affect the body 
  • Understand how and why their bodies work and how certain behaviors may have a positive and negative effects on the body
  • Get your body moving by attending a FREE, virtual group exercise class at the Health and Recreation Center (HRC). A complete schedule can be find on the Campus Recreation's Virtual Group Exercise page. 
  • Northwest Community Healthcare (NCH) is located on Harper's campus at the Foglia Foundation Health and Recreation Center (Building M) and includes an NCH Outpatient Care Center. Onsite health services will be provided to students, staff and the community including: Primary Care, Immediate Care, Student Health Services, Laboratory Services, Physical Therapy, Physical Rehab, and Imaging
  • The Diabetes Support Network allows individuals from Harper who are living with diabetes (or are helping someone manage their own diabetes) to come together to share their stories, experiences and resources. The group is led and managed by a registered dietitian, Mia Greco, MSNW, MPH, RD, LDN and Adjunct Faculty/Clinical Supervisor in the Nutrition Department at Harper College. Learn more and sign-up online.
  • Farmer's Fridge offers fresh food vending machines on campus located at:

    Building L, across from the bookstore
    Building X, southeast corner by the Massage Therapy Clinic

Social Wellness

social iconSocial wellness is the ability to relate to and connect with other people in our world. Our ability to establish and maintain positive relationships with family, friends, co-workers and surrounding community through a variety of modalities such as programs, events, workshops, and outings contributes to our Social Wellness.

  • Develop a sense of belonging on campus 
  • Understand the importance of developing connections with diverse individuals and groups
  • Building and maintaining healthy, nurturing and supportive relationships
  • Formulate a global consciousness and participate in the creation of a more aware and engaged campus community
  • Harper Happenings is a monthly online newsletter that contains information, resources and events on campus for Harper students. It's a one-stop-shop for all Student Involvement happenings. 
  • Attend a Harper College Athletics sporting event to build community and socialize with your peers or colleagues! Check out the athletics schedule for dates and times. Sporting events are free for students. 
  • Get involved on campus with a variety of activities, leadership programs or even student organizations through the Student Involvement. Not a student? Harper staff and faculty can also get involved by becoming advisors for a club or organization!
  • The Community Pulse: Student Wellness Check-Ins are weekly standing discussions meant to provide connection, discussion and support for students. The check-ins occur on Thursdays at 1 p.m. via Webex when classes are in session. No agenda - all Harper students invited! Students are encouraged to drop in to discuss current challenges occurring in our internal and external environments.
  • Harper offers a wide variety of events, shows and performances. Check out the Arts & Culture calendar to learn more about upcoming events.
  • The Student Government Association (SGA) is a way for students to get involved on campus. SGA is a group led by Harper students with the main focus of advocating for issues relevant to student life in addition to participating on college committees and truly providing the official "voice" for Harper students.
  • The Center for Veteran Students and Military-Connected Students is a place for student veterans to connect with other student veterans to share information, experiences, and ideas in adjusting from military life to student life.
  • Employees can get involved in one of the Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) on campus. An ERG is a group of employees, from various employment groups, that assists the college in creating an environment and culture that is welcoming and supportive of all employees, particularly those individuals who are members of historically under-represented populations.

Spiritual Wellness

spritual iconSpiritual wellness refers to our ability to develop congruency between our own values and actions. Moreover, spiritual wellness allows individuals to define purpose in their lives and make meaning of certain life events. This dimension is about establishing our own personal morals, ethics and what we stand for as individuals in the world. Some people might find spiritual wellness through religion and faith while others turn to nature or other mindfulness practices. Exploring our own moral and ethical compass through a variety of self-exploration activities contributes to the Spiritual Wellness dimension.

  • Explore, question and clarify values 
  • Engage in self-exploration activities to understand and define individual purpose and better understand moral and ethical beliefs 
  • Become aware of the differences in other’s values and how those differences affect and influence communities 
  • The Reflection Room is located in Building A, Room A332. It’s a place for students and employees seeking a quiet place to think, reflect or pray. Access available through the Department for Student Involvement.
  • The Campus Crusade for Christ (CRU) is an Interdenominational Christian student organization seeking to be a spiritual resource to students.
  • The Muslim Student Association is open to all faiths, the MSA creates a space that enriches the experience of Muslim students through spiritual, education, civic, and social activities on campus and the greater Harper community.
  • Being a leader requires you to be self-aware. Students at Harper have the opportunity to take the following assessments: MBTI (Myers-Briggs Type indicator), Student Leadership Practices Inventory, Strengths Quest Assessment, and the Emotionally Intelligent Leadership for Students Inventory.
  • Mindful Moments is a blog written by two Counseling Faculty at Harper, Michele DeCanio and Jennifer Rojek Schullo, about the many benefits of mindfulness and how you can incorporate simple, yet effective, practices into your routine. 

Each dimension contributes to an individual’s overall well-being and quality of life, and each dimension can affect and overlap one other. At times, one may be more prominent than others, but neglect of any one dimension for any length of time can have adverse effects on an individual’s health and well-being.

References: https://www.cdc.gov/hrqol/wellbeing.htm and The Wheel of Wellness Counseling for Wellness: A Holistic Model for Treatment Planning: A Wellness Approach: Psychiatric Rehabilitation Journal

Last Updated: 3/19/24