By: Nadia DelMedico
Spring semester can be rough. Fall semester is full of football and warm weather and the promise of an exciting year ahead. Going into winter break, I expected my second semester at UA to be the same as the first: filled with good times and good friends. However, when I returned to the Capstone after break, something was off. Despite the hype from a 16th national championship (roll tide!), I found everything on campus to somehow be less shiny and exciting. I started skipping classes and opting out of social events. My friends seemed distant, my classes were harder, and my weekends were long and boring. I was in a slump.
Towards the end of the fall semester, I had applied to join Project Health. I wanted to get more involved on campus, and Project Health seemed like the perfect way to do it. I thought I knew what I was signing up for: some free t-shirts, those punny buttons, and afternoons spent trying to get students to stop at the Health Hut. After a few weeks, I realized that Project Health is so much more.
Project Health isn’t just a peer education group. Sure, a passion for health and wellness is what brings us all together. Sure, we all want to make a difference on campus. But when we come together, we become something special. We become a family.
The Project Health environment is like no other. Everyone is filled with passion and positivity in all they do. At our weekly meetings, we celebrate each other’s accomplishments, whether they are acing a test, getting engaged, or being accepted to grad school. We take turns presenting “get to know me” slides so that we can learn a bit about each of our members. But it’s more than just that. Every person involved wants to be there. Everyone is passionate about bettering this campus, whether through our mission to educate our peers or simply by brightening someone’s day. The positivity in this group of people is nothing short of amazing.
Working with Project Health helped me out of my slump. I looked forward to my weekly Health Hut shifts and Sunday night meetings. I looked forward to learning more not only about health, but about my peers. I looked forward to interacting with the hundreds of people who stop by the Health Hut. I even looked forward to people asking if we still had kale shirts, 6 weeks after we had stopped giving them out.
Project Health is an internship, but it doesn’t feel like work. It isn’t something you just need to get done every week. It’s something you look forward to. It’s something that brightens your day. It’s something to distract you from the stresses of college life. It’s something great. It’s something I hope you’ll love.