University of Southern California
University of Southern California
Mrs. T.H. Chan Division of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy
Mrs. T.H. Chan Division of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy
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News and Events

Chan Division News

New course on thriving at USC and beyond earns rave reviews

In a low-stress class geared toward incoming freshmen, students develop skills to lead balanced and fulfilling lives.

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By Eric Lindberg / USC News

Debbie Lee didn’t realize how much she was ignoring her health and wellness.

The USC junior has a packed schedule — serving as president of the undergraduate student body and volunteering with a Christian ministry on campus while pursuing her political science major. Last fall, as part of her work for a new USC course on well-being, she created a pie chart of how she spends her time. It helped her recognize she had been neglecting other important aspects of life: rest and relaxation.


Photo by Eric Lindberg

Ashley Uyeshiro Simon, center, reconnects with students and instructors from a course on wellness and life skills that she led at USC last fall. (Photo by Eric Lindberg)

“Especially when you get to your upperclassman years, you’re always tired, running around, very busy,” Lee said. “I noticed even in my hours on campus, I really lacked time for rest. I would run back and forth from class to the office in a very frazzled state of exhaustion.”

That realization motivated her to strive for better work-life balance this semester. That includes eating at regular meal times rather than grabbing food whenever she can. She is also setting aside more time for exercise and adding 30-minute breaks before her afternoon classes, when her energy usually slumps.

It’s just one lesson Lee drew from the new class — Thrive: Foundations of Well-Being — offered through the USC Mrs. T.H. Chan Division of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy, with the support of USC Campus Wellness and Education. It is intended to help USC students, particularly incoming freshmen, explore their perceptions of happiness and well-being and develop skills to pursue a fulfilling life.

Read the full article at USC News.