American Council on Education Recognizes Kent State University’s COVID-19 “One-Stop Shop” Hub as Model for Others to Follow
Kent State University has been recognized by the American Council on Education (ACE) for the university’s creation of a “one-stop shop” COVID-19 website, call line and email address, including its telemedicine and telehealth information for students.
In the recently released report, Mental Health, Higher Education and COVID-19, Strategies for Leaders to Support Campus Well-Being, ACE also lauded the accessibility of Kent State’s resources for students living alone or in adverse situations.
The report illustrates a picture of Kent State’s Merrill Hall in the introduction.
"More institutions should follow (Kent State’s) lead in ensuring COVID-19 resource hubs prominently place wellness services (e.g., telehealth resources, insurance guidance, crisis resources, and grief counseling) so students can find them,” according to the ACE report. “It is also helpful to include tailored support or guidance for students in unique situations, such as students living alone or in negative or unsafe living situations.”
Kent State launched its Coronavirus Updates hub in late February as university students studying at its Florence campus returned home as COVID-19 began to spread across Europe. The hub has been continually updated with important health and safety information, university updates and key connections for support.
Lamar R. Hylton, Ph.D., Kent State’s vice president for student affairs, said the honor demonstrates the university’s dedication to the well-being of students and their success.
"We are delighted to be featured in this publication and to be recognized by ACE as a national leader in student wellness,” Hylton said. “Throughout this pandemic, and even before, the health and well-being of our students has been of paramount importance at Kent State. Notation in this article demonstrates our commitment to ensuring that resources are appropriately designed and delivered to enhance the success of our entire student body.”
ACE is a membership organization that mobilizes the higher education community to shape effective public policy and foster innovative, high-quality practice. As the major coordinating body for the nation’s colleges and universities, ACE has a diverse membership of more than 1,700 colleges and universities, related associations, and other organizations in America and abroad.
In addition to ACE, the report was prepared by Active Minds, American College Health Association, Healthy Minds Network, JED Foundation, Mary Christie Foundation and The Steve Fund.
The report refers to a nationwide Active Minds 2020 survey in which many students reported “a lack of regular and compassionate communication from their institution as a primary stressor during COVID-19.” The students were uncertain about academics, but also unsure of how to get mental health support.
Using both new and existing data, authors of this report have identified three major categories for leaders to consider in responding to student mental health during COVID-19 and beyond:
Mental health and well-being of all campus stakeholders.
Need for assessment — elements that are critical to planning at any time, and particularly now.
To access Kent State’s COVID-19 resources, go to www.kent.edu/coronavirus.