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UST Supports Like No Other in These Stressful Times

Stress is part of life. But stress seems to be presenting itself overabundantly these days.

An article by Kaiser Health News reports that the added pandemic stress is affecting the health of many people. These unusual times are prompting hair loss, cracked teeth, severe headaches and sleepless nights. Some individuals with chronic conditions such as multiple sclerosis experience more frequent attacks. Moreover, rates of depression and suicidal thoughts are up.

While experts recommend stress-management practices like exercise, mindfulness apps and developing social relationships, it’s worth noting that effective stress coping skills are actually woven into the fabric of the University of St. Thomas experience.

UST President Richard Ludwick said, “Our students are immersed in the fullness of an education where learning knows no limits. We stay strong and lovingly connected through the body of Christ. Our graduates are critical thinkers who emerge with an enriched perspective and in-demand skillsets for engaging the world.”

Opportunities for Peace of Mind

Anthony Carona enrolled at UST in 2018 to complete his pre-requisites for medical school. For Carona, St. Thomas offered built-in opportunities for peace of mind.

“My professors knew me and were always interested in my success,” Carona recalled. “On top of that, I would frequently go to daily mass, and the St. Basil Chapel on campus was a comfort when I felt overwhelmed. There, I could feel God leading me. For me, it was a place of consolation and a time to reflect on my hectic life then.”

Connection Can Ground UST Students

Isabella Acevedo is presently working on degrees in psychology and nursing at UST. She has felt the burden of the pandemic isolation in the worst way.

Acevedo said, “When we went into lockdown, it was very hard for me—so lonely. I found myself crying because I missed seeing everyone at school.”

Then, she attended UST’s online Easter retreat where she was paired with a mentor, Nursing School Operations Manager, Sylvia Dwyer. “Sylvia is awesome,” Acevedo said. “We decided to keep meeting every week or two, reading together and discussing what we notice. It’s been very helpful to me and keeps me from feeling isolated and lonely. It’s a joy to have her in my life.”

A Source for Spiritual Direction

Alumnus and creative agency leader Paul Latino ’03 reflects today on the complete peace and confirmation he realized at St. Thomas.

“That was new to me,” Latino said. “I was able to get spiritual direction in addition to my academic classes. Today, 17 years later, I continue to grow in my faith. I always have that foundation of solitude, peace and quiet, knowing God will lead me to further peace and confirmation about whatever I’m pursuing.”

University of St. Thomas is dedicated to providing opportunities for students to develop the critical thinking and coping skills that are essential throughout life.

Students who would like help navigating life balance or dealing with stress can get support here.