Student Success & YOU: New Year, New You

Student Success & YOU: New Year, New You

lightsNew Year’s resolutions.

A fresh start.

These are the things people all across the United States consider when the clock strikes 12:00am on the first day of 2019.  According to a survey conducted by YouGov Poll, the most common New Year’s resolutions last year were practices like eating healthier, getting more exercise, and saving money (Armstrong, 2018), and college students are no exception.  While these may be among the aspirations your own college student has for the new year, January is also the perfect month to encourage a positive physical, mental, and spiritual start to your child’s spring semester.

When school gets busy, one priority often sidestepped by students is physical self-care.  Junk food gets eaten, exercise is forgotten, and a full night’s sleep becomes the stuff of daydreams.  Little do they know that good physical health is correlated with lowered perceived stress levels, reduced test anxiety, and other factors related to improved academic performance (Henning, et al., 2018). Fortunately, students at HCU have access to resources like the Bradshaw Fitness Center and nutritious cafeteria options to ensure that a healthy lifestyle is accessible to them.  While it is up to your student to commit to actions that lead to good physical self-care, your role as a parent is essential in encouraging him or her to make those healthy choices.

Similarly, mental health plays a critical role in shaping the student experience.  College can be fun, rigorous, and enlightening, but it also has the potential to cause considerable stress and anxiety.  If inappropriately handled, this coupling of stress and anxiety is a recipe for a rocky semester.  Thereby, students who are committed to protecting their mental health are best served by taking steps early in the semester to ensure success.  One resource put in place to help make this possible is Success Coaches who are available to freshmen, sophomore, TRIO, and transfer students.  Success Coaches are trained to provide versatile support to HCU students, and they are available should your student wish to address academic or personal concerns. Additionally, if your student ever struggles with more serious mental health concerns, a licensed counseling professional is also available to all students on campus Monday through Thursday.

One of the most influential layers to the college experience is the spiritual journey, and HCU strives to be a place that helps develop each student’s walk with the Lord.  Encouraging your student to commit to spiritual growth this semester may result in some of the most transformational moments of his or her life.  Getting involved in one of the many campus Bible studies, confiding in a Success Coach or another campus professional about one’s desire for spiritual growth, or taking part in the Kaleo discipleship program are all steps your student can take to ensure they are being strengthened spiritually in synchrony with their physical and mental development.

The new year, which brings the start of a new semester, is an ideal time for students to reimagine what they want their time at HCU to look like.  Whether or not they set resolutions for 2019, focusing on maintaining a strong physical, mental, and spiritual state is a significant step towards ensuring not only a successful semester but also a healthier lifestyle.  After all, it’s a new year, so why not create a new and improved you?


Armstrong, M. (2018, January 2). The Most Common New Year’s Resolutions for 2018 [Digital image]. Retrieved from