BGSU offers virtual options to stay connected, healthy and engaged

Telehealth, virtual fitness classes some of the services available

By Amber Stark ’99

Since early March, when the potential impact COVID-19 would have on our world started making itself known, Bowling Green State University has taken action in the best interests of its students, faculty, staff and communities.

The University’s Student Emergency Fund is providing resources for students facing difficult situations, students were given flexible grading and evaluation options and faculty and staff are reaching out to students by phone, text and email to see how they are doing and how we can support them.

“We are a community that cares,” BGSU President Rodney K. Rogers said. “I am proud of the outreach and support we are providing students.”

Many of the steps the University has taken to assist students and keep them on track to complete their degrees are virtual. In addition to loaning students laptops and providing technical support and online learning resources to assist their online learning, the University is offering remote counseling sessions through the BGSU Counseling Center and telehealth options through the Falcon Health Center.

"The COVID-19 pandemic is impacting BGSU students in a variety of ways that combine to pose significant threats to their emotional health and wellbeing," Counseling Center Director Garrett Gilmer said. "While it may be impossible to completely prevent the feelings of grief, fear and anxiety that so many of us are experiencing, mental health and other support services can be extremely effective in reducing both the short- and long-term effects of these struggles.

"BGSU remains committed to the overall well-being of students. Right now, it is as important as it ever was, if not more, to reach out for help if you need it. And helping others get connected if you know they are struggling is an excellent way to show that you care and prevent anyone from struggling alone."

The University is also helping students, faculty, staff, alumni and community members stay connected through #BGSUVirtual – offering everything from virtual fitness classes and concerts to games and Netflix watch parties.

“One of the hallmarks of Bowling Green State University is the sense of belonging among members of our learning community,” said Chris Bullins, dean of students. “During this period of online learning, we hope that everyone uses these virtual opportunities to remain healthy and well, as well as to maintain a sense of connectedness to the Falcon Family.”

The University also started a blog series featuring students sharing their experiences and tips for the benefit of other students.

“I have enjoyed being a part of the blog series because I am able to offer resources and tips for students, like myself, to manage remote learning,” said Meredith Troxel, a senior student writer majoring in public relations. “Everyone learns in different ways and moving to completely online can be very daunting for some students.”