Neuroscience-Inspired, Incentive-Based Program for Developing Healthy Minds and Bodies on Campus and Online

The Wellness Environment Educational Institute (WE-EI) is a program for college and university administrators seeking to create a Wellness Environment (WE) for students modeled after the UVM WE.  The WE-EI includes a 4-week, fully online course, centralized curriculum, and support and resources provided through the WE SPINE (Shared Program Integrated Network).

Every College or University needs a Wellness Environment

The period of brain development between the ages of 13 and 25 is marked by increased rates of accidents, suicide, health issues related to risky sexual behaviors, and the emergence of several types of mental illness. When the loss of external regulatory systems (parents or guardians) meets the freedoms afforded by college life—a perfect storm is created. And now, with the added responsibility of helping to mitigate a global pandemic, the average college student is, quite literally, neurologically unprepared.

What is the Wellness Environment (WE)?

Recognizing the unique needs of college students in their transition between adolescence and adulthood, UVM Larner College of Medicine professor and Chief of Child Psychiatry, Dr. Jim Hudziak created the University of Vermont Wellness Environment (WE) in order to foster an environment that proactively addresses their challenges. It is the only comprehensive living and learning wellness program that is based on novel neuroscience research being done by UVM faculty who are at the forefront of their respective fields.

How the Wellness Environment Works

WE teaches students how their behavior affects their brain and their subsequent thoughts, feelings, and behaviors. This knowledge is paired with accessible, health-promoting resources to create an environment that incentivizes and rewards healthy decision making.

UVM’s Wellness Environment (WE) has received national recognition for its unique combination of:

  • Substance-free requirements
  • Incentives that help students make healthy choices
  • A neuroscience course showing the impact that good—and bad—choices have on the developing brain

The framework of WE is set up to provide your students with an environment to live and learn, both on campus and online, where making healthy choices is the norm, not the exception.

Hear What UVM Students Are Saying

I transferred here my freshman year when I heard about the wellness environment, it seemed like the perfect thing for me…I’ve met some pretty incredible people and we connect because we all want to live healthy and we are focused on eating well. The Wellness Environment brings people who have the same goals and same interests together., and that is what makes your college experience great.”
XI XI Halvorson-Phelan, Class of 2019
XI XI Halvorson-Phelan