When COVID-19 began last year, the world was unsure of the physical health effects the virus would have on those who contracted it. Now a year into the “new normal,” everyone, regardless of if they have been infected or not, has been affected by COVID-19 in some way. In order to help combat the negative, lasting effects of the pandemic, UT Martin is providing mental health wellness and awareness programs to its employees to ensure their safety and wellbeing even after the pandemic subsides.
The UT Martin Office of Human Resources has partnered with numerous organizations on campus, including the UT Martin Healthy Hawks and the Office of Student Life and Multicultural Affairs, to offer ongoing learning opportunities and engagement activities to promote physical and mental wellness from a holistic perspective. Through virtual check-ins for teleworking employees and educational programs hosted via Zoom, UT Martin is working to provide its faculty and staff with resources to help them as needed during and after the pandemic.
Recently, the Offices of Multicultural Affairs and Human Resources, along with Mark McCloud, chief diversity and inclusion officer, hosted a virtual “burnout bootcamp” for faculty and staff to share a wellness expert’s tips and tricks for avoiding burnout during the pandemic.
“Burnout and stress are real, and oftentimes coupled with the pressures of work and adjustment due to the pandemic, it is important that we prioritize our mental health and self-care. Oftentimes as faculty and staff, we put ourselves on the backburner, so this was an opportunity to put ourselves first and learn tools and tips to better care for our physical and mental state,” said Anthony Prewitt, co-interim director of student life and multicultural affairs. “I hope that faculty and staff prioritize their own mental health and are able to put into practice the tools and activities in order to prevent burnout and work-related stress.”
As the university continues to adjust to the needs of the students, faculty and staff amid the pandemic, these resourceful programs, such as the burnout bootcamp, will be offered even after the pandemic ends to provide support to the university community.
For more information about UT Martin’s mental wellness programs, visit http://utm.edu/humanresources.