Editor’s Note: This is the second of four student essays about their experiences in the Health 1, 2, 3 program. The essays were developed from an audio vignetter assignment, so are transcripts of those assignments. This program, described here, is a hallmark of the Human Health program and reaches every incoming Emory freshman.

Hi! My name is Mechelle Punjwani and I am a first year here at Emory University. I took Health 100 my first semester here, as required, in Fall 2017. At first, I didn’t expect to love the class considering the fact that the class only met once a week for 50 minutes. But I loved each and every topic from sleep to nutrition to mental health and so on. I ended up deciding to take Health 200 the following semester in Spring 2018. The reason I decided I wanted to take this course is because I knew I wanted to be a Peer Health Partner. I like the idea behind having someone close to your age to look up to and be mentored by. I felt it was very easy to talk to my PHP and he became sort of my role model, which I want to be for the incoming freshmen. I think it is crucial for freshmen to have this guidance for this transition from high school to college. I think the topics are important and apply to each and every student in college.

Clip art of colorful hands supporting a red, blue, and green heart titled "Mentor"
Image by takidelfin [CC0], from Wikimedia Commons

In Health 100, we talked a lot about goals and were asked to come up with our own goal. My goal was related to sleep. At first, I really didn’t know the amount of sleep adults should be getting, but I learned we should be getting 7-9 hours of sleep. That is one important lesson I took away from this course. Ever since I wrote down that goal in my Health 100 book, I have definitely been prioritizing my sleep every night. I make sure to count my hours when deciding when to sleep. This semester I had to wake up at 8am or 9am for my 9 and 10 am classes every morning, so I would make sure I am ready and in bed by 12 or 1 to make sure I get at least 7 hours of sleep every night. This really helped me in the long term because I am able to use my day time hours to work efficiently, go to class, and focus on my academics. I am also able to make time to exercise as well as make time for social aspects of my life like hanging out with friends and family. It really gives me a balance and I can thank the Health 1, 2, 3 Program for that.

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