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Two university departments change their names

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Two university departments change their names

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by Paulette Villicana, Staff Writer

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Two departments at San Diego State are changing their names for the spring 2018 semester. The Student Disabilities Center is now the Student Abilities Success Center, and the Health Promotion Department is now known as the Well-being and Health Promotion Department.

Student Abilities Success Center Director Pamela J. Starr said the renaming has been in the making for the past three years. The purpose behind the renaming, she said, is to broaden the population the center is trying to reach out to.

“There are individuals who have diagnoses who are eligible for our services but don’t identify as being disabled or having a disability, so we took away the ‘dis’ which sometimes has a negative connotation,” Starr said.

She said about 11 percent of college students have a disability. At SDSU, the number is about 5 percent, she said.

The center’s program coordinator, senior Tyler Hershey, also said he believes students did not want to be affiliated with the center because of a “negative connotation.”

“I think it’s something that we’ve needed for a long time just because of the way the disability field is looked at in students,” Hershey said.

Along with the name change, he said the center is trying to become a place where students can hang out instead of waiting for their appointments.

The Well-being and Health Promotion Department’s name change was the result of a conversation that began in fall 2017, according to Associate Vice President for Student Affairs Andrea Dooley.

Dooley said that over the years of looking at how members of the Health Promotion team were spending their time, it became apparent that they were providing students with more than just health-related services.

“This department is doing more than just health,” said Dooley.  “So we wanted to appropriately represent it to include well-being from a more holistic standpoint.”

Dooley said that the Well-Being and Health Promotion department has a registered dietitian who works with students.

“She shows up at the (SDSU) farmer’s market every Thursday with our mobile demonstration kitchen,” Dooley said. “So really thinking about eating healthy, teaching cooking skills, that’s really a well-being thing.”

Dooley said the department is also doing work involving sleep with some SDSU residential communities.

“So I think there’s an opportunity to take where we’ve evolved to really putting more of a focus on serving the campus community in ways that are broader than just health; and really keep that momentum going in order to expand even further within the well-being aspect.”

Alcohol and Other Drug Coordinator James Lange said that it is important to understand that health and well-being can become barriers in students success at SDSU.

“By putting well-being into our department name it is a reflection of that broader consideration of what is going to put students in a place where they are ready to succeed,” said Lange.

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1 Comment

One Response to “Two university departments change their names”

  1. George on February 20th, 2018 6:36 pm

    When will we be changing the name of the administration to the “Ministry of Truth?”

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