We Thrive@Russell Sage

Building on our reputation in the health sciences, Thrive@Russell Sage extends into and beyond the classroom to help members of the Sage community achieve the 8 Dimensions of Wellness: physical, emotional, social, intellectual, environmental, spiritual, vocational, and financial.

Thrive@ Russell Sage Commitment

Our commitment to wellness and well-being is based on the following beliefs:

  • Well-being and health require knowledge and liberal learning skills.
  • Individual wellness depends on social structures and a just society.
  • Gender equity and inclusion are part of a healthy community.
  • Healthy societies are diverse, inclusive and welcome the creativity of all persons.
  • Individual health is dependent on the health of the planet.

The Okanagan Charter

In October 2022, Russell Sage signed the Okanagan Charter, formalizing Sage’s membership in the U.S. Health Promoting Campuses Network. Sage was the 11th academic institution in the United States and the second institution in New York state to sign the charter.

Why the Okanagan Charter Matters

The Okanagan Charter calls on post-secondary schools to “embed health into all aspects of campus culture and to lead health promotion action and collaboration locally and globally.” 

The charter’s name reflects its origins on the University of British Columbia’s Okanagan campus in the territory of the Okanagan Nation.

Okanagan Charter Day Signing October 14, 2022 | Outside Buchman Pavillion, signing in Sage Park, followed by a reception in Bush Hall.

How Are Your Eight Dimensions?

Thrive@Russell Sage put together Sage-specific definitions of the Eight Dimensions of Wellness that will help build a healthier Russell Sage College. 

  • Physical: Recognize the need for physical activity, diet, sleep, and nutrition to achieve a fulfilling and sustainable life.
  • Emotional: Develop a positive self-image and relationship with others that leads to the ability to respond effectively to life’s circumstances.
  • Social: Develop positive meaningful interpersonal relationships and an evolving collaborative support system.
  • Intellectual: Employ creative abilities and adaptive skills, theories, or methodologies gained in one situation to new situations to explore important issues, solve complex problems, and develop creative solutions.
  • Occupational: Develop satisfaction and balance with one’s personal and professional life.
  • Spiritual: Experience a sense of deep meaning and purpose in life that leads to a guiding set of principles and values that give direction to one’s life.
  • Financial: Develop economic understanding and the ability to shape sustainable finances in ways that reflect strong moral and ethical values.
  • Environmental: Understand the dynamic balance between the individual, community, and natural environment that promotes sustainable action and respects diversity.

How does Thrive@Russell Sage Put Wellness and Well-being Into Action?

Fresh Check Day:

At the start of every fall semester, we hold Fresh Check Day, which offers activities and education about mental health and the development of coping skills. After taking self-assessments, students can get connected with campus and community mental health resources right away. 


In fall 2022, more than 90% of students said they were more likely to ask for help if they are experiencing emotional distress and 85% said they were more comfortable talking about mental health and suicide.


We’ve hosted Dr. Martin Seligman, director of the Penn Positive Psychology Center; Dr. Hammad N’Cho, a culturally-responsive licensed psychologist who focuses on the role individual identity can play in overall well-being, and Army Reserves Captain Jozlyn McCaw, a West Point graduate who speaks on the topic of resilience.

We put it into action with … action:

Group hikes, fitness classes, Chicago step dancing, running on-campus and community races, and pickleball.

We develop healthy communities:

Yes, our noted programs in health professions put great graduates into the health care workforce, but we also host collaborative discussions on how to meet workforce shortages and challenges. You’ll also find Nutrition students offering valuable service and research work in partnership with community meal programs and Nurse Practitioner students working alongside faculty to offer physicals to those in need. 

It’s in our curriculum:

Just like we require topics like writing and research in our general education curriculum, we build discussions of wellness, well-being, sustainability, and equity into the work that’s done in the classroom. You’ll find wellness-related discussions in the RSC Thread courses, and the general education curriculum requires students to choose a three-credit wellness-related course, such as Positive Psychology.

Thrive@Russell Sage Co-Chairs

Assistant Professor of Occupational Therapy & Assistant Academic Fieldwork Coordinator
Associate Vice President for Student Life for Student Wellness

Thank You to our Sponsor & Partners!