Resources for Coronavirus Pandemic

College of Education and Health Professions 2020
and Novel Coronavirus Disease 2019

It can be difficult to sift through all of the information related to the Novel Coronavirus. Therefore, we in the College of Education and Health Professions put together a series of answers to common questions you may have. Please use the form below if you have a different question we can answer for you. Until then, please accept our heartfelt wishes for successfully rising above the substantial challenges posed by this time. Stay safe!

— Dean Brian Primack, M.D., Ph.D.

There’s so much information around about COVID. What can I trust?

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention offer excellent guidance. For a more international perspective, the World Health Organization is a great resource. The Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette maintains a page that focuses on the state of Arkansas (page on central Arkansas).

When it comes to getting the latest news related to the condition, The Associated Press provides a good clearinghouse. The AP also has a good Fact Checking page that can help you separate reality from fiction. The WHO's Myth Busters separates rumor and hoax from fact.

How is the University of Arkansas responding to COVID?

The University has an excellent COVID-19 page. In order to help students cope with academic challenges related to the virus, the College has provided options around grading. Finally, the University offers many means for personal and academic assistance during this challenging time.

Do you have hints for working from home?

We hear you. Working remotely isn’t the picnic many people think it is. It can be very stressful to balance work and home lives. National Public Radio recently published an excellent summary of some tips for working from home.

Now that there's no school, how can we help our children, both educationally and socially?

If you have kids at home, please check out the list of educational resources prepared by experts in our Education programs.

I'm feeling anxious about coronavirus. Is help available?

Students can contact Pat Walker Health Center’s Counseling & Psychological Services at 479-575-5276 to set up a tele-mental health appointment. CAPS has transitioned to services online only.

In addition, Kristin Higgins, Ph.D., associate professor in the COEHP Counselor Education and Supervision degree program, has suggestions.

Feeling anxious during this global pandemic is a very normal, natural, and common response. One of the first things that you can do for yourself is acknowledge the anxiety and allow yourself to have those feelings. This is a very stressful and scary time, not to mention all the "unknowns" we are currently facing. It’s only natural that you would feel anxious.

So step one, don't judge or shame yourself for feeling this way.

Second step, share those feelings with others. During this time of social distancing, you’re probably feeling isolated and lonely as well. Reach out to family, friends, co-workers, partners, or even have a chat with your loving pet to share your anxieties and worries. A supportive listening ear can make all the difference in the world and can help you to open up about your feelings. Don’t bottle them up inside.

Third step, take care of yourself. Identify activities you enjoy doing and carve out time each day to do them. Whether it’s reading, working a jigsaw puzzle, taking a relaxing bubble bath, playing with your pet, yoga, or any other enjoyable self-care activity, make sure you build these into your every day. In addition, build some type of physical activity into your daily schedule as well. Going outside for a walk to get some fresh air is a great way to clear your head and release endorphins that will help you feel better.

Fourth step, don't overload yourself with news and social media. While it’s great to be informed and reach out to friends and family on social media sites, these are also activities that can and will increase your anxiety. Take a break from all the news and make sure you monitor yourself that you’re not overloading with too much anxiety-inducing news and media.

Finally, don't forget to breathe. Sometimes just taking a minute or two to stop and take some big deep breaths can help your body and mind reset, which will help ease your anxiety. Practice slow, deep belly breaths at least five times a day and take that time to just be present with yourself.

 

  • Should you find that you become even more anxious, depressed, or even suicidal, reach out for help. Call 9-1-1 or the suicide hotline at 1-800-273-8255.
  • Also, the U of A Pat Walker Health Center has counseling and psychological services available through a tele-health option.
  • The U of A Counselor Education and Supervision Program is offering free, virtual mental health counseling to anyone interested. This service is provided by graduate students who are in the internship phase of their counseling training. They are supervised by a faculty member and a doctoral student. The service consists of brief counseling support for minor/moderate anxiety and depression symptoms, along with general stress during this time of the pandemic due to, for example, financial, workplace or relational issues. Interested individuals may email uarkcned@gmail.com for more information.

Can I exercise and still be "socially distancing"?

Professor Bart Hammig, Ph.D., of the Department of Health, Human Performance and Recreation reminds us that exercise plays a vital role in maintaining physical and mental health during this time. And, it can be done easily while still socially distancing. Running, walking, cycling or hiking pose little risk of community spread of COVID 19. In Arkansas, it’s easy to find outdoor spaces to exercise alone or with immediate family members, while avoiding large groups of people. Exercise reduces anxiety, improves respiratory function over time, reduces stress, aids in digestion, helps us sleep better and reduces depression.

Does the university with its resources offer a special set of knowledge on the pandemic?

The U of A Honors College over 11 days in May held a 1 credit-hour forum featuring lectures of some 20 academics, medical professionals and Gov. Asa Hutchinson. It was recorded and is available to the public in 11 videos. Dean Primack spoke 85 minutes on "Media, Perception and Behavior."

Given all of the difficulty out there, is there any good news going on?

COEHP is committed to helping ease the burden of the challenges of those who are suffering during these challenging times. Please see these links for stories related to how our faculty, staff and students are responding to the crisis.

Have a question? Contact us, and we'll get back to you or answer your concern here.