Dog and woman with laptop on bed.

Mental Health Strategies and Help


Everyone in the UC Davis community is living with a high degree of uncertainty right now. Some of it centers on questions that affect almost all of us—when will on-campus instruction resume? When will the class of 2020 be able to attend its in-person Commencement? Other forms are individual and different for each of us.

May is Mental Health Awareness Month and, where most years the timing might feel arbitrary, this year it is significant.

We’re now in month three of a statewide shelter in place, and you may be feeling unproductive, disconnected, confused or even a little lost. Some may feel they’re doing fine in this environment and wonder if it’s OK to feel that way when they see friends struggling.

However you’re coping, it’s important to recognize that it is OK to be feeling whatever you’re feeling. And however uncertain the times, what’s certain is that campus is here for you, even if you’re far from Davis, and there are many, many virtual places to turn to for help.

There continues to be free counseling, individual and group, and there is an amazing range of wellness programming available—classes, meet-ups, drop-ins and activities. Find out the what, when and where of these resources below:

Student Health and Wellness Center
Student Health & Wellness Center. For Counseling Services, use Health-e-Messaging or call 530-752-0871 to schedule an appointment. (Gregory Urquiaga/UC Davis)

Counseling Services

Students can still access counseling services for free, from anywhere. Use Health-e-Messaging or call 530-752-0871 to schedule an appointment.

All Mental Health Crisis Consultation Services are offered via phone consultation or secure video conferencing. Call 530-752-0871.

The You Got This series of psycho-educational workshops designed to help build personal awareness, develop coping skills and promote self-care is being offered online this quarter, beginning May 4. Group therapy services are also available.

Please remember that for emergencies, you should call 911 immediately. 

Additional mental health resources:

Runner in Arboretum
Creativity and fitness are important as ways of bolstering mental health and a sense of well-being while social distancing. (Gregory Urquiaga/UC Davis)

Wellness Programming

Besides taking care of yourself by accessing counseling, there’s a whole new world of virtual experiences and classes to help get you moving and trying new things to support your mental health and well-being while social distancing measures remain in place.

Through its new platform, Aggies at Home, Campus Recreation is offering up daily Living Well classes in strength training, yoga, meditative movement and more, all the way to “Thru-Hiking with Mari and Friends,” a video series documenting one student’s preparations for hiking the John Muir Trail, and birding on campus.

More classes and activities will roll out in the coming weeks. Director of Recreation Deb Johnson says that her team, which includes 200 students working remotely this quarter, are continuing to find new ways to offer opportunities for students to stay active at home. Recently kicked-off activities include a virtual fun run that began May 1 and weekly trivia and esports tournaments. Participants in the run can record times at various distances for a chance to win prizes and a Rec Sports champion T-shirt.

Additional health and wellness resources: