Student Health Services dedicated to meeting the needs of students.

Students at Oregon State University have to be physically and mentally able to keep up with the huge task of learning and bettering themselves. Implicit in that state of capability, there is a need for a student to stay healthy and unhindered by disease, injury or violence. Fortunately for students, Student Health Services has an office at OSU dedicated to meeting the health needs of students.

“It’s all about the students,” Jenny Haubenreiser, the executive director of SHS, said. “We have to be constantly evolving to meet the changing needs of students.”

SHS’ services include primary health care, prevention and therapy for substance abuse and advocacy for survivors of different forms of violence, such as sexual assault or intimate partner violence. SHS also provides pharmacy services operated by the College of Pharmacy, psychiatric services and insurance plans designed especially for students.

An example of the services beyond physical health care is the Collegiate Recovery Community. The CRC is an office administered by SHS that provides support for students who are in recovery from a substance abuse problem, such as alcohol addiction.

“Having a CRC, which is just on college campuses, is awesome,” Sydney Cheifetz, the CRC graduate teaching assistant, said. “There are so many people who have drug or alcohol substance abuse disorders that are looking for a place to be with other people, and that’s exactly what we have here.”

The CRC clubhouse in Dixon Lodge is a social safe space for students in recovery from substance abuse disorders. It is extensively equipped with meeting rooms, lounge areas and even dorms for students who need a living area to recover in peace.

“Students come here and find other like-minded students,” John Ruyak, the alcohol, drug and recovery specialist at SHS, said. “(It’s) your normal college experience—you make friends, you hang out, you find a support network…the common tying factor is that everyone’s working to maintain their sobriety.”

In addition to providing standard day-to-day health services, SHS handles special health-related events happening at OSU. Examples of this include handling the recent vaccination efforts to stop the spread of the meningococcal B disease on campus, and organizing the Take Back The Night rally and march on April 27 in recognition of Sexual Assault Awareness Month.

Student Health Services’ student-focused approach means that access and usability are primary goals for the SHS.

“We want to work with students wherever they are, so that’s why we opened the Tebeau clinic,” Haubenreiser said, referring to the recently-opened clinics in the newly-built Tebeau residence hall.

SHS is funded in part by mandatory fees that all students pay. Paying their fees grants students free and unlimited access to the SHS and Counseling and Psychological Services. In addition to the health fees, certain special services, such as labs, x-ray and pharmaceutical services, incur additional costs.

OSU students fill several roles at the SHS. These include positions such as prevention, wellness and advocacy roles. They also help with the administrative offices, such as the referral, insurance and immunization offices.

As part of its goal to provide quality care for the students of OSU, SHS employs a variety of health professionals skilled in standard services, such as physician and health coaching services, as well as clinical services such as psychiatric services, tobacco cessation and chiropractic services.

“All clinicians are fully licensed in their field,” Haubenreiser said via email. “Staff also attend continuing medical education to stay current with the changing needs of students.”

Was this article helpful?