Student Affairs

Avoiding Burnout: Self-Care for Student Affairs Professionals in the Age of Covid 19 and Beyond

Duration: 1 hour
Facilitator: Dr. Aaron Hughey
Price: $50.00

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Student Affairs professionals play a key role at most colleges and universities. They are the ones who are primarily responsible for keeping the students who attend the institution on track toward graduation, and, as we all know, retention is exceptionally important, especially during the pandemic. This is obviously a lot of responsibility and causes a great deal of stress.  If student affairs professionals do not practice self-care and maintain a healthy work/life balance, they can experience burnout. When this happens, the quality of their work can suffer and everyone loses: the institution, the faculty and staff who work there, and, most importantly, the students. In this evidence-based webinar, we will discuss best practices as they relate to identifying when student affairs professionals may be at risk of job burnout or other forms of fatigue. More importantly, we will discuss intervention strategies and techniques for keeping these dedicated professionals at the top of their game – and responsive to the needs of their students during this critical time.

Even as we slowly get back to “normal,” Covid 19 continues to affect virtually every aspect of life on a college campus, the toll on student affairs professionals has been especially severe. These are the ones on the front lines of an institution’s efforts to keep their students on track to graduation despite the obstacles that have been imposed upon them by the pandemic. Over time, the pressure to be continually responsive to the students they serve can have a detrimental impact on both their ability to help their students but on their own mental and emotional well-being as well.


  • Covid 19 and Student Affairs: An Overview
  • Covid 19: More Work for Student Affairs Professionals
  • Burnout: What It Is/How It Can Affect You
  • Stress, Anxiety and Performance: Cause and Effects
  • Stress Can Kill You: Yes, Even Student Affairs Professionals
  • Overcoming Stress and Anxiety: Evidence-Based Best Practices
  • Strategies and Techniques: Short-Term/Long-Term
  • Case Studies: The Right Way/The Wrong Way

Learning outcomes:

Participants will:

  • Explore the impact Covid 19 has had on the delivery of effective student services.
  • Consider how Covid 19 has increased the workload for many student affairs professionals.
  • Learn what burnout is and how student affairs professionals are particularly susceptible to its overwhelming effects.
  • Investigate how stress and anxiety can lead to a diminished performance by student affairs professionals.
  • Discuss the impact increased stress and anxiety can have on the health of student affairs professionals.
  • Examine evidence-based best practices for mitigating the stress and anxiety precipitated by the pandemic.
  • Discover how to use concrete strategies and techniques student affairs professionals can use to overcome the deleterious effects stress has on their performance and health.
  • Critique examples from the proverbial real-world regarding effective as well as ineffective ways of dealing with the stress and anxiety student affairs professionals experience on a daily basis.

Who should attend:

This webinar would be ideal for all Student Affairs Professionals at all levels, including but not limited to Student Affairs and Enrollment Management Professionals, Academic Advising and Retention Specialists, Housing/Residence Life Administrators, Admissions and Orientation Staff, Alumni Affairs/Placement Services Staff.


Dr. Aaron W. HugheyDr. Aaron W. Hughey is a Professor in the Department of Counseling and Student Affairs at Western Kentucky University, where he oversees the graduate degree program in Student Affairs in Higher Education. Before joining the faculty in 1991, he spent 10 years in progressive administrative positions, including five years as the Associate Director of University Housing at WKU. He was also head of the Department of Counseling and Student Affairs for five years before returning to the faculty full-time in 2008. Dr. Hughey has degrees from the University of Tennessee at Martin, the University of Tennessee at Knoxville, Western Kentucky University, and Northern Illinois University. He has authored (or co-authored) over 65 refereed publications on a wide range of issues including leadership and student development, standardized testing, diversity, legal issues (including compliance), technology, and educational administration. He regularly presents at national and international conferences and consults extensively with companies and schools. He also provides training and professional development programs on a variety of topics centered on student success; how to respond to Covid 19 effectively and realistically is one of his specialties.

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