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Student life suite opens at UMass Medical School

New centrally located space integrates student services for all three schools

By Bryan Goodchild and Sandra Gray

UMass Medical School Communications

January 28, 2020

The new student life suite opened at UMass Medical School with a ribbon-cutting ceremony and open house on Monday, Jan. 27. Centrally located steps from the main lobby, the fully renovated suite houses the offices of Student Life, Student Affairs, the Registrar and Financial Aid, serving students of the School of Medicine, Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences and Graduate School of Nursing.

All services available in the suite support the shared goal of creating a positive environment for every learner on campus.

“As each school develops and launches new and innovative curricular initiatives, we also have worked together to try to enhance and support the student experience outside of the classroom,” said Sonia Chimienti, MD, associate professor of medicine, vice provost for student life and enrollment, and associate dean for student affairs. “Students will be able to swing by the suite and take care of multiple needs with efficiency—from clarifying financial aid package questions, to modifying enrollment, requesting assistance with accommodations or financial stressors, or meeting with a team member to strategize how to address individual challenges they may be experiencing in the learning environment.”

Students will have access to integrated support services including a financial wellness team, assistance with disability accommodations, and health promotion activities and programs.

“The reason I came here is that I saw a beautiful group of people that were wiling to collaborate and willing to listen to students,” said Peter Cruz-Gordillo, an MD/PhD candidate and UMass Board of Trustees student trustee. “They are always willing to look at how we can optimize things, not just in the lab or the classroom, for a better student experience.”

Terence R. Flotte, MD, the Celia and Isaac Haidak Professor of Medical Education, executive deputy chancellor, provost and dean of the School of Medicine; Susan Young, director of student affairs for the Graduate School of Nursing; and Dr. Chimienti lauded the collaboration among the three schools.

A new Student Counseling Services suite will open in the coming months. The expanded and renovated location will accommodate more service providers and ensure student comfort and confidentially.

Students are encouraged to visit the Office of Student Life, open 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays. Learn more at www.umassmed.edu/studentlife, and email questions, comments and suggestions to student.life@umassmed.edu.

Related stories on UMassMedNow:
Michael Hirsh appointed assistant vice provost for wellness and health promotion
Chimienti appointed SOM associate dean for student affairs