BETHLEHEM, PA - Northampton Community College (NCC) confirmed the development of new Zen Zones on Bethlehem, Monroe, and the Fowler Family Southside Center Campuses for students to decompress and take some time for self-care. The low-sensory Zen Zones will offer a space free from distractions that would allow students, faculty and staff to take a moment to regroup, practice guided breathing, mindfulness in the moment, or to learn skills about coping with the stresses of college and personal life. The college seeks to provide excellent, accessible and comprehensive learning experiences in partnership with the dynamic, diverse communities we serve. NCC prides itself on a Culture of Caring, a supportive educational environment where all members of the college community work to collectively support NCC students in a way that acknowledges how the complexity of their lives impacts their academic success. With resources for students from food pantries to help with financial struggles, NCC continues to focus on a student’s overall well-being. NCC was able to make the Zen Zones a reality with the help of NCC’s community partner, Preventive Measures, a mental health and home health leader that fosters thriving communities in the Lehigh Valley and Pocono regions.
“Preventive Measures takes great pride in partnering on NCC Campus Zen Zones. We hold a deep concern for the mental well-being of the youth, particularly the vulnerable 18-24 age demographic, where mental health concerns are prevalent. We recognize the pressures of school and daily life and value the opportunity to collaborate with NCC on a tranquil space for self-care, reducing stress and enhancing well-being for students, faculty and staff. This initiative aligns with our mission to promote abundant living through prevention and community mental health services,” said Dwayne L. Jones, CEO at Preventive Measures. The room will incorporate sensory activities, wellness books and materials, and more for students, faculty and staff to utilize. A variety of wellness events and support groups will be hosted in partnership with community and campus organizations such as National Alliance for Mental Illness (NAMI), NCC’s Counseling Department, and Active Minds student mental health alliance. Individuals will also have access to information on NCC and community mental health resources. An estimated 26% of Americans ages 18 and older suffers from a diagnosable mental disorder each year, according to John Hopkins Medicine. “Our organization's focus on college campuses stems from the urgency to address mental health early,” said Jones. The Pennsylvania Department of Education designated NCC as a Certified Suicide Prevention Institution of Higher Education. The proposed Zen Zones will enhance efforts to prevent suicide at NCC and in the wider community. “NCC is an open-access institution with a diverse population of students, with far too many grappling with academic, personal, and financial challenges that inhibit their ability to focus on their studies and stay in school. We hope that the Zen Zones will raise awareness while reducing the stigma for mental health across the NCC community, and in turn, prevent mental health crisis,” says Julie Bailey, NCC’s major gifts officer. MEDIA CONTACT: Mia Rossi-Marino, email@example.com, 610-861-4122
About Northampton Community College With an enduring commitment to the regional community it serves and a focus on student success, Northampton Community College has developed a reputation as an institution of extraordinary distinction, earning accolades at the state and national levels for innovative programs, outstanding faculty and impressive student achievements. It counts among its successful alumni a four-time Pulitzer Prize winner and an Academy Award winning director as well as a host of CEOs, presidents, and leaders of business and industry. Today, Northampton Community College has locations in Bethlehem, Southside Bethlehem, and Monroe County, serving 30,000 students each year from 53 counties, 42 countries and 25 states. For more information, or to apply, please visit www.northampton.edu. Follow NCC's President on Twitter @NCCPresDaveRuth, and follow the College on TikTok @NorthamptonCC and on Instagram @NorthamptonCommCollege. Like us on Facebook at Northampton Community College.