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Falvey Library provides free trial access to Symptom Media Collection from January 22nd to March 7th, 2024

By Laurie Ortiz Rivera, PhD 

Image courtesy of Alexander Street.

Mental health is essential to overall health. Did you know that nearly 20% of children and young people ages 3-17 in the United States have a mental, emotional, developmental, or behavioral disorder? And suicidal behaviors among high school students increased more than 40% in the decade before 2019? (2022 National Healthcare Quality and Disparities Report). One thing every one of us can do is to be more informed by learning from resources about mental health available at Falvey Library.

Symptom Media is one of these resources, and it is an online mental health education and training film library with over a thousand streaming videos dedicated to recognizing mental health disorders and providing accurate diagnoses. Films of Volume V include various series of multiple disorders, such as ADHD, Violence, Eating Disorders, PTSD, and Substance-Related and Addictive Disorders. Sample titles include:

  • Post Traumatic Stress Disorder with Traumatic Brain Injury;
  • Separation Anxiety Disorder;
  • Bipolar I Disorder with Mood Congruent Psychotic Features;
  • Anorexia Nervosa Binge-Eating Purging;
  • Suicide Assessment;
  • Schizotypal Personality Disorder;
  • Adolescent Antisocial Behavior;
  • Alcohol Use Disorder;
  • Substance Use Disorder;
  • Major Depressive Disorder;
  • Opioid Use Disorder.

The film collection includes Teletherapy, Assessment Tools, Case Studies, Mental Disorder & Illness Symptoms, Coping Mechanisms & Defenses, Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 5th edition, Text Revision (DSM-5-TR), International Classification of Diseases, 10th edition (ICD-10) categories, among others. The Training Library tab lists all the videos organized by relevance, new arrivals, title, and release date. The platform tools allow for clip-making, playlist creation, LMS integration, citations, mobile sharing, and more. The text for each video is also included.

For more information, visit


2022 National Healthcare Quality and Disparities Report [Internet]. Rockville (MD): Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (US); 2022 Oct. Available from:

Photo of Laurie Ortiz-Rivera, Social Science Librarian.Laurie Ortiz Rivera, PhD, is Social Sciences Librarian at Falvey Library.




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Dig Deeper: Rosalynn Carter

By Shawn Proctor

Rosalynn Carter and Betty Ford at National Women’s Conference in support of ERA in November 1977. Credit: The Carter Center


Rosalynn Carter, who became a leading mental health advocate after serving as First Lady, died Nov. 19.

The Carter Center, founded by former U.S. President Jimmy Carter and former First Lady Rosalynn Carter, to advance peace and health worldwide released a statement upon her death.

“For more than 50 years, Mrs. Carter was a tireless advocate for those living with mental illnesses, supporting practical measures and policy reforms to create parity for mental illnesses with physical illnesses in Georgia, the United States, and the rest of the world. She taught generations of journalists how to report about behavioral health in a way that reduces stigma and stimulates understanding and equitable treatment. She also advocated for caregivers, for acceptance of life-saving vaccinations for children and adults, for the elderly, for humane end of life, and even for the survival of the delicate and beautiful monarch butterfly.”

“Rosalynn was my equal partner in everything I ever accomplished,” President Carter said via statement. “She gave me wise guidance and encouragement when I needed it. As long as Rosalynn was in the world, I always knew somebody loved and supported me.”

Learn more about Rosalynn Carter, in her own words and through others, by exploring the resources below. Furthermore, discover how she fits into the timeline of First Ladies and addressed the pressing crises of the era.



Video: First Lady of Mental Health


Shawn Proctor Head shot

Shawn Proctor, MFA, is Communication and Marketing Program Manager at Falvey Library.


Peek at the Week: May 8


In Up, Ellie said, “Adventure is out there.”

Happy Monday, Wildcats! Right now, you’re likely bogged down with finals and end-of-the-semester work. It’s necessary, but it’s not exactly a time of great joy. But, adventure is out there. In a little over a week, when summer break begins, you’ll be free to enjoy some time outside of the stress of academia. Enjoy it! Go find your adventure.

To students, Falvey wishes you a manageable finals week and a happy break! To our Senior Wildcats, happy graduation! We’re confident you’ll do great things.


Monday, May 8

The Learners’ Studio/Center for Speaking and Presentation | 4-9 p.m. | The Math Center in the Learners’ Studio, Falvey Room 204 | Free

Tuesday, May 9

The Learners’ Studio/Center for Speaking and Presentation | 4-9 p.m. | The Math Center in the Learners’ Studio, Falvey Room 204 | Free

Wednesday, May 10

The Learners’ Studio/Center for Speaking and Presentation | 4-9 p.m. | The Math Center in the Learners’ Studio, Falvey Room 204 | Free

Thursday, May 11

The Learners’ Studio/Center for Speaking and Presentation | 4-9 p.m. | The Math Center in the Learners’ Studio, Falvey Room 204 | Free


Photo by Nik on Unsplash

Today, May 8, is Reward Yourself Day. With finals upon us, I don’t doubt that we’re all working hard. Today, perhaps after you’re done studying or done with work, treat yourself to something that makes you happy, whether it’s a tasty treat, a new pair of shoes, or a walk in the park. You deserve it!

Fittingly, National Mental Health Awareness Day is Wednesday, May 10. Feelings of stress and being burnt out are certainly common during finals, and if it’s your last year here, you might be feeling sad to leave or anxious to start the next chapter in your life. Take some time today (or even just this week) to prioritize your mental health. If you’re struggling, talk to someone in your support system and utilize Villanova’s health and well-being resources.

Saturday, May 13, is Brunch for Lunch Day. If you’re looking for something to do with your friends or family for the end of the semester, enjoy some avocado toast, crepes, bottomless mimosas (if you’re of age), or any one of your go-to brunch staples. Personally, I’m partial to french toast.

This Sunday, May 14, is Mother’s Day. If you’re feeling grateful, celebrate your maternal figure, whether that’s your mom or another positive female role model in your life. On a personal note, I’m endlessly grateful to my mom and all of the women who helped raise me. If you’re a mother or a maternal figure to someone, we at Falvey thank you.

Annie Stockmal is a graduate student in the Communication Department and Graduate Assistant at Falvey Library.

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Maintaining Good Mental Health: Resources for Villanova Students

Image of the fountain on Villanova's campus.

By Kallie Stahl 

Our mental health changes on a daily basis. It’s been a tough few years, and now more than ever, its imperative that we don’t neglect our emotional, psychological, and social well-being. Five of the top 10 monographs requested on the Online Community Library Center (OCLC) InterLibrary Loan (ILL) network for April 2022 were titles pertaining to mental health: Anxious People by Fredrik Backman, Crying in H Mart by Michelle Zauner, The Midnight Library by Matt Haig, The Mountain Is You: Transforming Self-Sabotage Into Self-Mastery by Brianna Wiest, and Atomic Habits: An Easy & Proven Way to Build Good Habits & Break Bad Ones by James Clear.

While you know your own mind and body, and what works (and doesn’t) work for you, I’ve listed a few resources that may be of interest as we close out Mental Health Awareness Month.

  • The Villanova Counseling Center is available to help you with personal and emotional concerns. All services are free of charge to students and appointments are typically available within a week upon request. Appointments are flexible and staff will work with your class schedule. “Telehealth appointments may be available on a limited basis with the caveat that clients must be physically located in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania under Pennsylvania law.” You can schedule an appointment by calling 610-519-4050 weekdays between 9 a.m.—5 p.m.; stopping by the Counseling Center (located on the second floor of the Health Services building at the Villanova University main entrance on Ithan Avenue, across from The Pavilion and Bartley Hall); or by submitting this form.
  • The Villanova Student Health Center provides health care to students. In addition to sick visits, the health center provides confidential HIV and STD testing, immunizations, laboratory testing, women’s health, allergy clinic, and more. During the summer semester, the Student Health Center is open for in-person and virtual visits Monday—Thursday: 8 a.m.—4 p.m. (closed from 12—1 p.m.); Friday—Sunday: closed. Call 610-519-4070 to schedule an appointment. The Student Health Center is located on the third floor of the Health Services building.
  • The Office of Health Promotion is a resource for Villanova students on information pertaining to the six dimensions of health and well-being: social, physical, intellectual, cultural, emotional, and spiritual. Health Promotion staff members are trained to provide educational information on nutrition, fitness, sexual health, and more. The office sponsors a variety of programming and events, well-being coaching, and online courses. For more information, call 610-519-7407 ( or stop by the first floor of the Health Services building. Access the Thrive 365 portal for customized health tips and tools.
  • The Davis Center for Athletics and Fitness is open from 7 a.m.—7 p.m.: Monday—Thursday; Friday—Sunday: closed. Be sure to bring your Wildcard to access the gym. There’s also plenty of parks nearby. This blog has a list of walking trails within 30 miles of campus.
  • Check out these free sleep apps to help develop regular sleep patterns and healthy sleep habits.
  • Try these tips for stress relief. If you enjoy meditation, visit this blog to aid your mindfulness practice this summer.
  • Looking to strengthen your spiritual health? Catholic mass is offered daily at 12:05 p.m. in Corr Chapel. All students are welcome to join. Sunday mass at the St. Thomas of Villanova Parish is offered at 7:30 a.m. and 10:30 a.m. There are many multifaith communities nearby. Visit Campus Ministry’s website for a listing of prayer and worship off campus.
  • Explore Falvey Library’s collection for more resources. Sarah Hughes, Nursing and Life Sciences Librarian, and Merrill Stein, Psychology Librarian, compiled a few readings for positive well-being.

Kallie Stahl ’17 MA is Communication and Marketing Specialist at Falvey Memorial Library. 




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Cat in the Stax: What’s Scarier than Halloween?

By Ethan Shea

Halloween is about confronting our biggest fears. Usually this means coming face to face with a killer clown, giant spider, or blood-thirsty vampire, but in this week’s “Cat in the Stax,” I want to talk about something even scarier.

Sometimes the most frightening things are everyday occurrences. Social anxieties stemming from a fear of failing tests, speaking to crowds or eating lunch alone are very real concerns that you are more likely to encounter than a menacing circus performer. Since the days are becoming a bit shorter, it’s also important to keep the risk of Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) in mind.

To combat these fears, I want to list a few strategies and resources that will help you enjoy a (mostly) scare-free Halloween.

"Villanova University Health Services Building"

Villanova University Health Services Building

Villanova University Health Services

Perhaps the most obvious mental health resource is Villanova University’s Health Services, but there may be some helpful information you weren’t aware of. For example, did you know that services at the Counseling Center are completely free to current students? Counseling can help with just about anything, from concerns about depression, shyness, or just adjusting to college in general.

Personally, I think everyone should have some sort of counselor or therapist, even if you think you’re feeling great. We routinely see doctors for check-ups on our physical health, so why should mental health be treated any differently? Additionally, I find these Health Services mental health infosheets to be extremely helpful and informative, so be sure to check them out!

Academic Resources

Another common concern is academic anxiety. Counseling can be helpful in dealing with this sort of stress, but I also believe it’s helpful to know there are people here to help you with your studies. Keeping that in mind, make sure you make time this semester to visit the Writing Center in room 210 of Falvey Library and the Mathematics Learning Resource Center (MLRC), which is close by in room 204. These resources are here to say you’re not alone. College is a team effort!

What’s SAD?

Seasonal Affective Disorder, which is more commonly known as SAD, is a clinical depression that occurs during the winter months. Although we are not quite there yet, the weather is cooling down, and the days are becoming shorter. It’s important to be proactive with mental health and to anticipate potential problems. Especially since we live in the Northeast, SAD is something that should be on your radar. Only 1% of people in Florida get SAD, while 10% of people in New Hampshire do, so the further north you travel, the greater the risk.

As a preventive measure, make sure you routinely exercise, sleep well, and expose yourself to sunlight. Even during the winter months, I know going for runs or walks outside makes a huge difference in my mental health. The sunlight and crisp air always has a positive impact, but bundle up!

I know doing everything at once, having fun, doing homework, and getting adequate amounts of sleep may seem impossible at times, but that’s why the aforementioned resources are available. With cool weather and fun activities like pumpkin carving and apple picking, there’s plenty of good times to be had, so don’t let the season’s scares bring you down!

Headshot of Ethan SheaEthan Shea is a first-year English Graduate Student at Villanova University and Graduate Assistant at Falvey Memorial Library.



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Cat in the Stax: Running to the Library

By Ethan Shea

Running is a hobby I’ve had for a while now, but during the past couple years, I’ve become very passionate about the sport. Aside from the obvious physical benefits of exercise, running has been essential to maintaining my mental health. There’s truly no better feeling than finishing a long run on a crisp October morning.

The most difficult part of being a runner, at least for me, is motivation and consistency. Its easy to fall into a rut where you begin running less frequently, and that’s exactly what I’ve been doing lately. New trails, schedules, and opportunities have made the last month exciting, but coping with the loss of my treasured running routes back home hasn’t been easy.

Here at Falvey, we know the best motivation is found in a good book, so I recently ran to the library for help with getting my running back on track. If any one else is planning to hit the track or trails, here are a few books I’d recommend.

"Once a Runner"

Once a Runner by John L. Parker Jr.

Once a Runner by John L. Parker Jr.

This is one of those classic running books your dad would probably recommend to you. Published in 1978, this novel thrived off the energy of the first running boom in the 1970s. It channels the gritty mindset of a runner who wants to be the best and is willing to do anything, even 60 consecutive quarter mile repeats, to achieve his goal.

The athlete in question is a fictional collegiate runner named Quenton Cassidy. Cassidy is a top-of-the-line athlete and four-minute miler, but he has lots of work to do before competing against John Walton, who holds the world record in the mile with a blazing time of three minutes and 50 seconds.

Admittedly, Once a Runner isn’t the most eloquent book I’ve ever read, and it will probably be most appealing to those who are already into running, but that’s what makes so called “cult classics” special. There’s just something about this story that stuck with generations of runners. The copy of this text I own was actually gifted to me by a former semi-pro runner I used to work at a running store with, so maybe I’ll continue the tradition and hand it off to another eager runner a couple decades from now.

"Advanced Marathoning"

Advanced Marathoning by Pete Pfitzinger

Advanced Marathoning by Pete Pfitzinger

Pete Pfitzinger is a former Olympic marathoner with a personal best time of 2:11:43 over the 26.2 mile distance (that’s about five minutes and two seconds per mile). Needless to say, Pete is fast, and that’s why I trust his training advice in Advanced Marathoning.

This book isn’t the most exciting read if you’re not a running geek, but it provides a lot of valuable information that any runner can benefit from. It really digs into the science of marathoning and the physiological changes that your body undergoes during training. The training plans provided are fairly advanced, but that doesn’t mean everyone can’t apply their principles to their own routines.

If the marathon isn’t your favorite event, Pfitzinger also has a book titled Faster Road Racing that provides similar sorts of information as Advanced Marathoning but focuses on distances from 5k to the half marathon. I’d say if you want to nerd out over some running science, Pfitzinger’s books were written for you.

"Born to Run"

Born to Run by Christopher McDougall

Born to Run by Christopher McDougall

This is without a doubt one of the most influential books about running out there. The true story follows members of the Tarahumara Native Mexican tribe as McDougall himself learns how the community is able to run distances of over 100 miles without injuring themselves.

One of the more controversial takes found in this book is McDougall’s belief that modern cushioned running shoes cause injuries. He points to the minimalist shoes worn by Tarahumara runners as evidence of the inferiority of traditional running shoes. The popularity of this book even led to a minimalist running craze. You may remember those Vibram foot-shaped shoes that people were running with a few years ago. Those are (unfortunately) an indirect result of Born to Run. Interestingly enough, minimalist running is not the main focus of this book. The text only spends a couple chapters talking about the benefits of minimalism, and the rest explores other aspects of training with the Tarahumarans.

I could go on about why I passionately disagree with McDougall’s opinions on running shoes, but I’ll let you read and make a decision on your own. Shoes aside, this story captivated millions, and it’s certainly worth reading if you’d like to dive into the running shoe debate for yourself.

Headshot of Ethan Shea

Ethan Shea is a first year English Graduate Student at Villanova University and Graduate Assistant at Falvey Memorial Library.

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Foto Friday: Positive Inspiration

Photo courtesy of Joanne Quinn, Director of Communication and Marketing.

A special thank you to whoever left this little piece of inspiration on the path near the old Falvey patio!

It’s been a tough year, and with final exams approaching, its imperative that you don’t neglect your emotional, psychological, and social well-being. The Villanova Counseling Center is available to help you with personal and emotional concerns. All services are free of charge to students and appointments are typically available within a week upon request. Appointments are flexible and staff will work with your class schedule.

As we move towards the end of the semester, continue to make time for those activities that help you stay positive—phone calls with family and friends, a long walk, meditation, listening to your favorite album or podcast, etc. Mindfulness Meditation will continue on Mondays from 1-1:30 p.m. throughout the spring semester. The events offer a virtual, comfortable space where you are guided and encouraged to stop and focus on the “here and now.”

Sarah Hughes, Nursing & Life Sciences Librarian, and Merrill Stein, Psychology Librarian, compiled a few resources for positive well-being:

Kallie Stahl ’17 MA is Communication and Marketing Specialist at Falvey Memorial Library. 





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‘Cat in the Stax: Don’t Stress Meowt

We may have survived midterms, but it seems as though the deadlines just keep coming, especially with a shortened semester and no fall break. It’s a lot easier said than done to close the computer and really take time away from studying and assignments. This past Saturday, Oct. 10, was Mental Health Awareness Day, a day recognized internationally to emphasize the importance of taking time for yourself and showing that everyone deals with stress in some capacity.

This week, I’m back with some more tips, this time about ways to stay relaxed and take care of yourself during a crazy semester in the middle of an even crazier year. 

#1 Do something active. It can be so easy to end up stuck inside all day on Zoom classes and Netflix, but getting outside and getting active can give you new energy and change up your day. Even a 10-minute core or leg workout can do wonders for changing the trajectory of your day.

Although many of us aren’t walking from class to class as much as we used to, take some time to get outside and go for a walk with a friend or two. Take some time to get outside and clear your head, especially with this gorgeous fall foliage and cool weather. 

#2 Read a book. I don’t know about everyone else, but even with my blue-light glasses and computer filters, my eyes are still tired of looking at screens when the end of the day rolls around. Try something different and pull a book off the shelf (or get it off the shelves of Falvey!) or listen to an audio book. Forget all the stressors of the “real world” by immersing yourself into a different time period or a completely fictional world.

Check out my book club, Read with the (other) Jenna, where you can read Angela’s Ashes along with me.

#3 Listen to a podcast. Podcasts are a great way to learn something new and random, while also working on mundane tasks that need to be done. I personally always listen to podcasts when I’m putting away laundry, making food or driving in the car. It helps me take a step back from all the thoughts swirling around in my head and learn something interesting.

One of my current favorites is the NPR podcast called How I Built This, which talks about how successful business owners, like the founder of Patagonia, got to where he is today. If you have any podcast recommendations, definitely share them below. 

#4 Take a nap. Remember how before I said it can be helpful to be active? Taking a nap is also a completely valid and important way of taking care of your mental health. It’s hard to shut off your brain when you have so many to-dos and sometimes the only way to stop thinking about those is to go to sleep. If you’re a napper, make sure they’re productive and don’t leave you feeling even more drowsy than when you laid down in the first place.

In the same vein, getting a full goodnight’s sleep is also super important for your stress levels. Don’t be afraid to call it a day, go to sleep early and start fresh in the morning.

#5 Attend Mindfulness Mondays. Every Monday this fall, Campus Ministry and Falvey invite the Villanova community to join them on Zoom from 12:30-1 p.m to stop and focus on the “here and now.” Mindfulness is proven to reduce stress, and I’m sure we could all use a stress reduction at this point in the semester. You can find more information and the Zoom link here:

Ultimately, taking time for your mental health is going to look differently for everyone, so you need to find what works best for you. What’s your go-to way to relax in the midst of a busy schedule? Let us know in the comment box below!

Jenna Newman is a graduate assistant in Falvey Memorial Library and a graduate student in the Communication Department. Current mood: Sore from my last stress-reliever workout. 








Last Modified: October 14, 2020

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