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VSU cancels classes on Sept. 28 to address mental health fatigue

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Posted at 8:39 PM, Sep 27, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-27 21:17:02-04

RICHMOND, Va. -- Virginia State University announced that classes would be canceled on Tuesday, September 28 to address COVID-19 mental fatigue.

The university said that the goal of this Trojan Wellness Day is to mitigate increased loneliness, stress, anxiety and depression that is in part due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

VSU's president, Dr. Makola M. Abdullah, shared the following statement with the academic community:

Achieving a university-wide COVID-19 positivity rate of less than one percent is no small feat. It requires a great deal of work by our faculty, students, staff, and administration. Not only is everyone under a significant amount of pressure, dealing with the typical stress of higher education, but now everyone is doing so with the added exertion of a global pandemic. This makes intentional intervention to address physical and emotional wellness—all the more necessary—which is exactly what this Trojan Wellness Day is all about.

In addition to classes being canceled on Tuesday, employees have the chance to use a leave day or have a relaxed workday. Faculty and staff members are free to dress down, attend on-campus mental health activities and spend time checking on their coworkers.

Dr. Donald E. Palm, the Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic and Student Affairs, shared the following statement.

We all need to think about prioritizing our health on this day, in order to continue to ensure that greater happens here. And the message we want to spread our Trojan Community is simple—Virginia State University cares. We care about you and your mental health; and we recognize your hard work and commitment.