Dear colleges and universities,
Welcome to Student Health 101, 2015–16! I’m here to tell you about the new content elements you’ll see in SH101 this year, especially as they relate to our September issue. A communication goal for us at SH101 is to inform our client colleges and universities about our content development strategy.

On the cover

You might notice this new button in the lower-right corner: Want to get involved with SH101? This is an easy, all-in-one access point for students. We’re always looking out for dynamic, committed student participants and contributors. The button links students to info on three ways they can be part of our process:

  • Video contributors
  • Intern reporters
  • Members of our Student Advisory Board

Student-generated content

The peer mentor/peer educator model is a core piece of how SH101 communicates effectively with students. Students have more credibility with their peers than we do, so we’ve looked for ways that students can be more visible:

  • App reviews: These brief reviews complement our feature. The September article on time management—How to be busy without burning out—includes a review of the app Timeful. Future app reviews in this format will be written by current students.
  • Slideshows: Our slideshows are great forums for student voices. We have found that students engage more with slideshows that are integrated into our feature content than those that stand alone. In the September issue, the slideshow of student stories complements our infographic Why is everyone talking about sexual assault on campus?
  • Instagram images: Our SH101 launch on Instagram was an immediate hit with students—we already have 1,000+ followers. Students’ best Instagram images will illustrate some of our features this year.
  • Single videos: Some features will include a single video, often one that has been developed specifically to complement a feature article. In the September issue, our piece on transitions—25 things college students wish they’d know sooner—includes a video montage of student tips.
  • Student views (3 videos): If you’ve been around SH101 a while, you’ll be familiar with our stack of three student videos alongside some articles. No worries—you will still see the three-video stack in each issue. In September, it works well with Firsthand stories of first-gen students.

BetterU

Our new BetterU pages evolved from the former Health Bulletins spread. The title complements our classic UCookbook and FitnessU pages. We went for a contemporary, unified look that retains the most popular elements of Health Bulletins and introduces some new ones:

  • Mind your mind, our new series on mindfulness, is by Dr. Holly Rogers, a psychiatrist at Duke. Dr. Rogers co-developed the Koru Mindfulness program specifically for college students. This content reinforces our ongoing messaging about building coping strategies and resilience.
  • Contributor spotlight highlights a student contributor: a writer, reviewer, video-maker, or member of our Student Advisory Board. It’s a way for our student contributors to speak more directly to their peers and inspire other students to get involved.
  • JobProb links to a feature in our career series.
  • Ask the expert and App of the month are still here. Students love them.
  • Fact or fiction (previously on the cover, for schools that did not have campus correspondents) presented a health communication dilemma, and has been replaced with the “get involved” button. Research is showing that when we reiterate myths—even to debunk them—readers tend to misremember those myths as truths.

September issue

  • 25 things college students wish they’d know sooner In time-honored September fashion, we’ve addressed the transition to a new year at college using a compilation of student tips.
  • How to handle a passive-aggressive roommate (even if it’s you) addresses common roommate tensions.
  • Firsthand stories of first-gen students Our feature on first-generation student experiences speaks to the challenges that students and faculty are grappling with on every campus: How students can integrate academically and socially so that they are able to stay in college and be successful. Many of its insights are appropriate for non-first-genners too. In the nontraditional edition, international graduate students are also featured.
  • You’ll see our ongoing exploration of creative layout and visual options—e.g., in our quiz (What’s up, sugar?) and the infographic (Why is everyone talking about sexual assault on campus?).
  • In FitnessU, our trainers demo ways to sneak in fitness moves around campus without setting foot in the gym (not that we’re opposed to gyms—but some students are). In UCookbook, our cooks demo delish sugarless breakfasts, complementing our sugar feature.

Student Advocate

Our Student Advocate newsletter for faculty, staff, parents, and supporters will be evolving to offer more specific guidance around handling sensitive issues, especially sexual assault.

Tell us what’s working (or not)

As always, our relationship managers want your feedback on how our content is working for your school. If you have questions and ideas that you’d like to discuss directly with the editorial team, please ask your relationship manager to put you in touch with us. Wishing you a happy, productive, busy (but not too busy) start to the 2015–16 academic year.

Lucy Berrington
Editor, Student Health 101 college editions