Well-being Resources for Times of Transition

August 16, 2021

We all recognize that change is constant – both planned and unplanned.

As part of Penn’s commitment to improving your well-being, Human Resources fosters a culture of care and support as the University welcomes back more faculty and staff to our on-campus environment, while also responding to the ongoing effects of COVID-19.  

MindWell at Penn provides a variety of resources for this time of transition to help you face current challenges of the moment or enhance your emotional, mental, and physical well-being. The video above, offers a quick introduction to these supports and services, including information about what to expect when you or a family member calls the Employee Assistance Program (EAP).

Faculty and staff can also view the MindWell at Penn online guide, a comprehensive look at the MindWell system of emotional well-being and mental health care benefits for University faculty, staff, and their families. Click on the image below for easy online navigation or to download a copy. 

"When faculty and staff are dealing with personal or workplace changes, Penn's system of support - including the Employee Assistance program and MindWell at Penn well-being resources - is prepared and available, " says Jack Heuer, Vice President, Division of Human Resources.

On this page, you will find other available resources to create a positive work-experience whether you continue to work on campus or are transitioning back to an office environment. These tools will also help you reduce stress, stay well, and find harmony personally and professionally.

Virtual Events

  • Penn Wellness and Work-life Upcoming Virtual Events - Join us for virtual opportunities to enhance your well-being, including workshops and classes on health, fitness, stress management, financial wellness, and work-life balance topics.

    • New 30-minute express wellness workshops are offered such as Guided Meditation, Chair Yoga plus Core, Barre, and Stretching. 

    • One-hour topical sessions cover topics such as Developing a Daily Practice for Calm, Ideas for Sustainable Life Balance and others.

    • Virtual Nutrition Counseling Appointments with Corporate Wellness Nutrition (formerly Family Food) - Penn’s nutrition counseling partner, Corporate Wellness Nutrition (formerly known as Family Food) is offering virtual appointments. Receive the same guidance from a trusted Registered Dietician by contacting myRD@wcusa.com to schedule an appointment. 

Caregiving and Community Resources

  • Penn’s Backup Care program offers benefits-eligible faculty and staff up to ten days of subsidized backup childcare (minimum four hours) per fiscal year through Care.com. Care can be offered in your home or in a childcare center, with some of the cost covered. To register, call 855-781-1303 or go online to the easy-to-use registration system at penn.care.com.
  • Penn Children’s Center and Bright Horizons University City-daycare to support Penn employees with onsite childcare from infants to pre-K.
  • Care.com subscription through Penn that enables one to search for and hire caregivers, tutors and babysitters. https://penn.care.com.
  • Senior Care Solutions provides eligible individuals with the support and guidance of experienced Senior Care Advisors who can assist employees and their families with senior care giving. Provided by Care.com for elders, caring for adults from a distance.
  • Caregiver Connections (PennKey Required), a platform developed by the Provost’s Office to build connections.
  • Parents@Penn Facebook Group, a community group for Penn staff, students, postdocs, faculty, alumni, and partners.
  • Komae, a cooperative childcare app, helping you to coordinate free, flexible childcare.

Support for Wellness and Overall Health

  • Employee Assistance Program (EAP) powered by Health Advocate - Provides eligible faculty and staff, and their families, access to free, confidential, 24/7 counseling and referral services for personal and professional life issues from any location. Call 1-866-799-2329 for assistance. 
  • Virgin Pulse - Stay healthy and stay connected with Penn's wellness platform partner. Virgin Pulse offers an exciting array of well-being options and resources to focus on your health and optimize your  Be in the Know experience. Use the Virgin Pulse mobile app for wellness activities and resources on the go.   
  • Be in the Know - Whether you want to focus on a health goal, participate in well-being challenges with your colleagues, or simply strive to feel your best, Penn's Be in the Know wellness campaign is here to support you. Through Penn's partnership with Virgin Pulse, staff and faculty can continue to engage in their health and earn up to $300 in rewards, choosing from exciting options available on the platform.
  • Penn's Health Plans and COVID-19 - Penn’s insurance carriers, Independence (Blue Cross), Aetna, CVS Caremark, Keystone (IBC), and Penn Medicine’s Connected Health Virtual Care Telemedicine Practice are committed to making sure that our participants receive appropriate access to vaccines, testing, and treatment.
  • Fitness Classes - Exercise doesn't have to take a back seat during these times of transition. Try one of the Human Resources sponsored fitness classes taught by Penn's Campus Recreation instructors. Check the Events Registration page for available virtual fitness classes, held only for Penn's faculty and staff.

Courses, Training, Webinars

Flexible Work Options

There is tremendous value in bringing our staff, faculty, students, postdocs and alumni together on campus. It creates an environment that enriches our culture with new ideas, provides opportunities to collaborate, and allows us to continue learning from each other. We are continuing on a path to a more traditional campus experience, while also supporting the competing demands of work and life.  We have updated our flexible work guidelines and created the Off-Campus Work Expectations Policy.

    Additional Resources to Support Well-being

    Understanding Diverse Reponses to Change and other tips and advice - myHR newsletter, published by HR

    Stop, Breathe & Think Meditation and Mindfulness app - Helps kids, teens, and adults build emotional strength during a time of rising stress and worry. Download the app from the  Apple Store of Google Play.  Independence Blue Cross members can access it for free for 60 days.  Instructions are available here.  

    Staying focused by taking a mindfulness break, Health Advocate blog

    Six tips to stay calm, positive, and resilient in trying times, Penn Today

    Return to Campus Tips for Staff, Health Advocate

    Return to Campus Tips for Managers, Health Advocate