The Office of Wellness and Mental Health strives to provide education, tips, and current resources to assist and inform members of the NOVA community. Check out the Virtual Self-Care Kit and Self-Care Booklet for wellness strategies, e-resources, NOVA services, and counseling referral information to help you feel and be your best self in school and beyond.

This resource section offers a wealth of information about numerous topics; however, The Office of Wellness and Mental Health only endorses NOVA services included on this website. Reference in this site to any specific commercial product, process, or service, or the use of any trade, firm or corporation name is for the information and convenience of the public. It does not constitute an endorsement, recommendation, or favoring by Northern Virginia Community College.


  • Visit the Advising and Counseling page for career, transfer, retention (academic success) and disability support.
  • Campus Counseling Services: If you are a new student or have questions, a counselor will help guide you through the sometimes-confusing administrative procedures and requirements. All NOVA campuses have counselors available by appointment or walk-in.
    • Academic Advising helps you plan a program to meet your educational objectives.
    • Virtual Advising is available if you cannot come to campus to meet with your advisor.
  • Speak With a Virtual Advisor: Virtual advisors are available by chat or email. Please have your NOVA Student ID number available.
  • NOVA In-Person and Online Tutoring: NOVA offers all students free tutoring and written paper reviews on campus and through Log in to CANVAS to access the link to
  • StudentLingo: Offers on-demand, online workshops to help students become successful.
  • Chegg Tutors: Offers tutoring 24 hours a day, seven days a week on a per lesson or monthly basis on various topics.
  • Tutor Me: Offers a free, 30-minute live trial tutoring session. Tutoring sessions are 1-on-1 and archived for you to review at your convenience.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a developmental disability that can cause significant social, communication and behavioral challenges. There is often nothing about how people with ASD look that sets them apart from other people, but people with ASD may communicate, interact, behave, and learn in ways that are different from most other people. A diagnosis of ASD now includes several conditions that used to be diagnosed separately: autistic disorder, pervasive developmental disorder not otherwise specified (PDD-NOS), and Asperger syndrome. These conditions are now all called autism spectrum disorder.


  • Addiction Group: All Addiction Group content is medically reviewed or fact-checked to ensure as much factual accuracy as possible. This resource only links to reputable media sites, academic research institutions and, whenever possible, medically peer-reviewed studies.
  • Alcohol Education Basics Guide: Contains resources and educates the dangers of alcohol and provides a video called "30 Reasons to Quit Alcohol".
  • Alcohol Rehab Guide (ARG): ARG's mission is to help people overcome alcoholism and have a team of people who overcame alcoholism and achieved long-term sobriety.
  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC): Provides facts, research, online tools and media, public health objectives and surveillance, and publications.
  • National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism: Use their knowledge to improve diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of alcohol-related problems, including alcohol use disorder.
  • Start Your Recovery: A free, confidential tool that helps individuals take steps toward a healthy relationship with drugs and alcohol.
  • Virginia ABC Publications: Works to ensure that adults of legal drinking age who choose to consume alcohol responsibly can do so in a safe environment that complies with the laws and regulations of the Commonwealth of Virginia.


  • Get Smart About Drugs: Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) resource for parents, educators, and caregivers dedicated to removing drugs and criminals from communities and fighting the diversion of illegal drugs.
  • Just Think Twice: Provides street names of drugs, how it is taken, how it affects the body, and resources for getting help.
  • Operation Prevention: The mission is to educate and kickstart lifesaving conversations with students about how opioids and heroin use can affect them negatively.
  • The Office of the Attorney General: Has assembled a team of prosecutors to take down dealers, traffickers, and those who profit from addiction.
  • The Facts About Drugs - Student Guide: This website helps other teens make the right decision not to use drugs. We'll be guiding you through learning the facts about these drugs.
  • United States Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA): Enforces the controlled substance laws and regulations of the United States.
  • Drugs of Abuse (PDF): US DEA provides information about the harms and consequences of drug use by describing a drug's effect on the body and mind, overdose potential, origin, legal status, and other key facts.
  • Addiction Treatment Division: Free service to assist users in connecting with drug rehab treatment facilities.
  • Drug-Free World: Empowers youth and adults with factual information about drugs so they can make smart decisions and live a drug-free life. It provides free booklets and E-courses that contain interactive videos.
  • Drug Rehab: Equips patients and families with the best information, resources, and tools to overcome an alcohol or drug addiction and pursue lifelong recovery.
  • Northern Virginia Intergroup (A.A.):  In-person services have been temporarily suspended, but curbside pick-up of materials and a 24/7 hotline at 703.293.9753 are available.
  • Find an N.A. Meeting: Narcotics Anonymous is a global, community-based organization with a multilingual and multicultural membership that holds 67,000 meetings weekly in 139 countries. N.A. offers recovery from the effects of alcohol and drug addiction through a twelve-step program.
  • Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation: Addiction treatment experts have developed the field's most trusted and comprehensive continuum of care, including inpatient and outpatient rehab programs, sober living options, and recovery management and resources.
  • The JED Foundation: Provides non-threatening and supportive information to help students with alcoholism and drug addiction.
  • Virginia Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services: Virginia's community services boards (CSBs) are the primary entry point of the Commonwealth's public behavioral health and developmental services system.
  • Partnership to End Addiction: The Center on Addiction is a national nonprofit research and policy organization focused on improving the understanding, prevention and treatment of substance misuse and addiction.
  • Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA): SAMHSA is the agency within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services that leads public health efforts to advance the nation's behavioral health. SAMHSA's mission is to reduce the impact of substance abuse and mental illness on America's communities.
  • Video - Mechanism of Drug Addiction in the Brain: This video explains how different drugs affect the brain and what causes drug overdoses.
  • Video - 10 Side Effects of Drug Abuse: An informational video starts by showing a 24-hour addiction hotline and a substance abuse professional stating ten side effects of drug abuse.
  • Video - What are five common signs of drug abuse: Provides information on five common signs of drug abuse and how they affect someone health-wise.

NOVA is committed to ensuring all students have an opportunity to pursue a college education regardless of the presence or absence of a disability. NOVA makes reasonable accommodations in providing the course, program, building modification, and/or auxiliary aids and services in compliance with Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act (ADAAA) of 2008. No academically qualified student with a disability will be denied access to or participation in the services, programs, and activities of the College.

  • National Eating Disorders Association, a non-profit, has a list of warning signs and symptoms of an expanded number of eating disorders and resources to address them. They also host a NEDA chat on Monday-Thursday from 9:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. and Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., and phone helpline at 1.800.931.2237 on Monday - Thursday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., and Friday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • The National Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders (ANAD) seeks to alleviate suffering and support those struggling with eating disorders through its non-profit organization. They have free services, a helpline available from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Monday through Friday at 630.577.1330.
  • Association for Size Diversity and Health (ASDAH) is a non-profit committed to the practice of the Health At Every Size® (HAES®) Principles; ASDAH envisions a world that celebrates bodies of all shapes and sizes, in which body weight is no longer a source of discrimination and where oppressed communities have equal access to the resources and practices that support health and well-being.
  • Overeaters Anonymous is a community of people who support each other in recovering from compulsive eating and food behaviors. They offer podcasts, meetings and conventions, as well as other resources. We welcome everyone who feels they have a problem with food.
  • Diabulimia Hotline is a non-profit organization dedicated to education, support, and advocacy for people with diabetes and eating disorders and their loved ones. They have a 24-hour hotline available at 425.985.3635, as well as a referral service.
  • FEAST is an international non-profit organization of and for caregivers of loved ones suffering from eating disorders. FEAST supports caregivers by providing information and mutual support, promoting evidence-based treatment, and advocating for research and education to reduce the suffering associated with eating disorders.
  • Sage + Spoon is a support group specifically for indigenous people and people of color struggling with body image & food. They also define themselves as an LGBT safe space and provide general resources.
  • Trans Folx Fighting Eating Disorders (TFFED) is a collective of trans and gender-diverse people who believe eating disorders in marginalized communities are social justice issues. Our mission is to make visible, interrupt, and undermine the disproportionately high incidence of eating disorders in trans and gender-diverse individuals through radical community healing, recovery institution reform, empowerment, and education. 
  • Center For Discovery is a treatment facility specializing in outpatient, partial hospitalization, and inpatient care for eating disorders and co-occurring suicidality and substance abuse disorders with locations in Fairfax, Alexandria and McLean.
  • Recovery Record is an evidence-based app for tracking symptoms and meals, provides coping skills and encouragement, and can be linked to a treatment team for further support (available for Android and iPhone users)
  • 70 Resources to Support Eating Disorder Recovery

  • Career Connection: Northern Virginia Community College Career Services is excited to announce a new tool for students and employers. Students can access resources to develop and launch their careers, while employers can directly recruit talented NOVA students and alums.
  • NOVA Career Services-Students: Career Services are available at each NOVA campus as part of the college's comprehensive education and student services. In accordance with the College Catalog, Career Services assist students with exploring, developing and setting goals related to each student's unique educational and academic needs.
  • Virginia Career Works: The Strategic Plan of Virginia Career Works – Northern Region (formerly the Northern Virginia Workforce Development Board) outlines how we intend to improve the future of the workforce in the Virginia Career Works – Northern Region.
  • Careers & Degrees in Healthcare: A Guide for Students with Disabilities

Fairfax Virginia Career Works Centers:

  • Annandale: Heritage Center, West Wing
    7611 Little River Turnpike
    Annandale, VA 22003
    703.533.5400, TTY 703.533.5316
    Monday-Thursday, 8 am-4:30 pm
    Friday, 10 am-4:30 pm
  • Alexandria: South County Center
    8350 Richmond Highway, Suite 327
    Alexandria, VA 22309
    703.704.6286, TTY 703.799.3435
    Monday-Thursday, 8:30 am-4:30 pm
    Friday, 10 am-4:30 pm
  • Reston: Lake Anne Center
    11484 Washington Plaza West, Suite 110
    Reston, VA 20190
    703.787.4974, TTY 703.787.3166
    Monday-Thursday, 8 am-4:30 pm
    Friday, 10 am-4:30 pm

Prince William County Career Works Centers

  • 13370 Minnieville Road
    Woodbridge, Virginia 22192
    703.586.6800, TTY: 703.583.6850
    Hours: M, T, Th, F 8:30 am-4:30 pm; W 9 am-4:30 pm

Loudoun County Career Works Centers

  • Workforce Resource Center102 Heritage Way, NE
    Leesburg, VA 20176
    First Floor, rear entrance
    703.777.0150, 703.737.8421
    Hours: M, T, Th &F 9 am-4:30 pm; W 9 am-Noon

Employee Assistance Program: Sometimes, you may need some extra help. If you have insurance through work, the Employee Assistance Program (EAP) offers free and confidential assistance. This is the DHRM page that lists the phone number for EAP for each insurance provider for State employees.

Tips and Resources on Classroom Management

Working With Students in Distress:

  • NOVA’s Financial Stability and Advocacy Centers: The mission of the Financial Stability and Advocacy Center is to enhance student capability for academic success by providing personalized services that build strong financial foundations and access to community resources. Financial coaching, emergency grants, tax preparation, and benefits eligibility are among the services offered. The Single Stop screener assists students in finding monetary resources they may qualify for, such as childcare, healthcare coverage, energy, food, housing, immigration and legal assistance.
  • TOGETHER Program: Free Couples Counseling Program, an evidence-informed program to build strong families and offers relationship and financial education, connection to community resources, and employment services to couples residing in Northern Virginia and Montgomery County. Dedicated and qualified professionals lead the program and involve a research component to evaluate the effectiveness of its services. Participants are randomly assigned to receive all or none of the services. However, all participants receive incentives (gift cards) to complete surveys.
  • CommonHelp: In partnership with the Virginia Department of Social Services, learn and apply for financial assistance and other benefits
  • Fairfax County Coordinated Services Planning: Coordinated Services Planning (CSP) connects Fairfax County residents to county and community-based services and resources, such as emergency food, shelter, clothing, healthcare, employment, financial assistance and other essential needs
  • Loudoun County Basic Needs and Financial Assistance
  • Prince William Virginia Cooperative Extension (VCE)
  • City of Alexandria Financial Assistance
  • Arlington Thrive: same-day financial assistance for county residents

Nighthawk Nest Food and Personal Care Pantry

The mission of NOVA’s Food and Personal Care Pantry is to provide students, faculty, and staff easy, on-campus access to free food and personal care products. Learn more about available resources and pantry locations by visiting the Nighthawk Nest Pantry site.

For more information, please get in touch with Financial Stability and Advocacy Centers at

Additional Area Resources for Food (and more)

Understanding Grief and Self-Care
Grief is a normal and multifaceted response to loss. While grief can often feel overwhelming, it is a natural emotional response that allows us to realize and (eventually) accept the loss of someone or something dear to us.

Everyone grieves differently, and your reaction to loss will be as individual as you are. There is no "right way" or "wrong way" to grieve and no time frame for when you should be "over it." You may find you do not grieve the same way in every situation. The most important thing you can do for yourself is to honor and allow what you are feeling and to find someone to talk with about your sadness. It is important not to isolate yourself. Suppressing, medicating or ignoring your feelings will only prolong the grief process.

Grief can affect us on an emotional, physical, and cognitive level. Below are some common grief responses you may experience.

Emotional Responses

  • Shock and disbelief - Feeling numb or like you are in a dream state, especially when a sudden and unexpected loss occurs.
  • Sadness/ Depression/ Emptiness
  • Guilt - Wishing you had done or said something different.
  • Anger/Irritability - Towards anybody or everybody, including God and the person who died.
  • Fear - Death can make us contemplate our mortality, or we may fear our ability to handle our strong emotions.
  • Mood swings - Grief can sneak up on us when we least expect it, and we may feel that strong emotions come upon us out of the blue. This is a normal and common occurrence during the grieving process.

Physical Responses

  • Possible reactions to loss include fatigue, nausea, insomnia, a decrease or increase in appetite, and physical aches and pains.

Cognitive Responses

  • Confusion/ Bad dreams /Forgetfulness/Trouble concentrating

Positive Coping

  • Give yourself time to grieve. One has to acknowledge the loss to adapt to it.
  • Talk about your feelings with people who are understanding and compassionate.
  • Avoid people who tell you to move on, get over it, or want to tell you how you should feel.
  • Take care of yourself and express your needs to others. You have permission to decide what is right for you. Give yourself permission to change plans or make requests to fit your needs.
  • Find a way to express what you are feeling. Journal. Write letters to the deceased. Create your own memorial service or act of remembrance.
  • Be kind and compassionate to yourself. Grief is not something you "fix" but responds to self-care. Give yourself some attention.

If you feel isolated, cannot cope, or are overwhelmed by the intensity of your emotions, The Office of Wellness and Mental Health is here to help. Reach out for support.

Other Grief Support Resources

If you or someone you know is homeless or in danger of becoming homeless, emergency shelters and other community resources are available.  

Human Trafficking Facts From The Virginia Office of the Attorney General

National/Federal Resources

Support/Advocacy Groups

International Organizations

  • CNN Freedom Project: The CNN Freedom Project provides informational videos on sex trafficking.
  • ECPAT: ECPAT supports protecting children and empowering 109 members in 96 countries.
  • End Slavery Now: Partners with antislavery organizations in the United States and across the globe to aid human trafficking victims, as well as refugees and displaced persons.
  • European Commission (EU): Supports anti-trafficking actions through multiple funding streams within the EU and non-EU countries and regions.
  • Exodus Cry – Every Person Should Be Free: Has a team dedicated to abolishing sexual exploitation through cultural and legal reform while assisting victims through outreach.
  • Free the Slaves: Raise awareness of modern-day trafficking worldwide and support vulnerable communities through education, mobilization, and increasing access to educational services.
  • Free to Shine: Australia combating sex trafficking in South East Asia. Strengthens the families and communities they partner with so they can prioritize the safety of children.
  • United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC): Helps governments react to the instability caused by crimes and emerging forms of crime such as human trafficking.

State Resources

Legislation: Human Trafficking Laws & Regulations

Foreign-Born/Multicultural Services:

Phone Numbers:

Lawyer Referral Services: (Pay $35-$50 for 30-minute initial consultation)

NOVA is committed to providing a safe, inclusive, diverse environment for our students to achieve their academic goals. We hope that our students and staff take advantage of LGBTQ support and resources both on and off campus. There are some clubs at various NOVA Campuses; please inquire about locations with your campus Student Life Center.

National Resources:

Virginia Resources:

  • Side By Side: Shares community alerts that affect the LGBTQ youth in Virginia. It trains teachers and other youth service providers on making their programs more inclusive for LGBTQ youth.  
  • Virginia Sexual and Domestic Violence Action Alliance: Sexual assault and domestic violence advocacy organization that provides the expertise needed to ensure an effective response and offers resources for making informed choices.
  • AGLA: Provides many resources in the Northern Virginia area.
  • Arlington Gay & Lesbian Alliance (resource page): Grassroots membership organization that strives to improve the quality of life and meet the needs of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer or questioning (LGBTQ) community and allies.
  • Northern Virginia Pride: Non-political organization that focuses on being ego-free and accessible for everyone in the area.
  • Safe Space NOVA: Protect the youth from bullying, substance abuse, and other challenges faced by LGBTQ youth by providing a positive environment and welcoming staff that uplift and encourage them.
  • The Metropolitan Community Church of Northern Virginia: Second Fridays is a peer-led support group for members and friends of the Transgender and gender-expansive community.
  • Transgender Assistance Program of Virginia (TAP): created to end homelessness within the transgender community in Virginia, offer safe emergency and temporary transitional housing to homeless transgender adults in Virginia, and help them find additional resources in the surrounding area.



  • Black Women's Health ImperativeOrganization advancing health equity and social justice for Black women through policy, advocacy, education, research and leadership development.
  • HealthWorks for Northern Virginia: A nonprofit, Federally Qualified Health Center created to provide health care in a medical home setting to those with limited or no health insurance with locations in Herndon and Leesburg. Serves patients with and without insurance.
  • Getting to Zero Initiative (HIV and STI Testing) Alexandria Health Department (AHD) is taking important steps to combat this growing issue. AHD has developed a City-wide HIV initiative: "Getting to Zero," with the aim of achieving Zero Infections | Zero HIV Deaths  
  • As a college student, you have several "qualifying health coverage" options. With a range of plan types and costs, it's not hard to find health insurance that works for your life and budget.
  • Humana: A variety of affordable options are available by using zip code. Read about a few options to help you decide which is best.
  • AlphaTelemed: Excellent affordable health care and mental health services 24/7 on your smartphone, computer, or tablet at your fingertips. 
  • Mary Washington Healthcare Wellness Program (Fredericksburg): The Wellness Program/Ryan White Grant serves our community to help those living with HIV and Aids to navigate healthcare (including testing and prophylaxis), understand medications, and assist in finding financial and emotional support options. 
  • VDH Health Department Finder: Search here to find your area health department in Virginia
  • Birthright of Woodbridge: Birthright of Woodbridge offers help to women facing unexpected or challenging pregnancies. Our services include information about alternatives to abortion and help to find solutions to difficult situations. We provide free pregnancy tests, prenatal care referrals and housing information in the greater Woodbridge area to help you make a workable plan for the future.
  • Birthright of Loudoun: We offer free pregnancy testing in Leesburg, VA. We have supportive individuals here to help with planning or pregnancy or to talk about the abortion alternatives available to you. Call us to schedule an appointment, speak to a professional about our services, or seek advice.
  • First Care Women's Health: information and resources from our licensed medical professionals on all your pregnancy options so you can make a fully informed choice. All at no cost to you. Walk-ins are welcome.
  • Hope in NOVA: Free services regarding alternatives to abortion
  • NOVA Pregnancy Help Centers: We offer pregnancy tests, ultrasounds and consultations at no cost to you. Confidential text line at 703.782.9877.
  • La Leche League: The mission of La Leche League is to help mothers worldwide to breastfeed through mother-to-mother support, encouragement, information and education and to promote a better understanding of breastfeeding as an important element in the healthy development of the baby and mother.
  • Young Invincibles - Provides ACA and Medicaid application assistance and education surrounding health insurance literacy, accessing care and navigating the health care system.
  • Lions Club – eyeglasses and hearing aids


  • Lloyd F. Moss Free Clinic: (Fredericksburg): Provides medical, dental and pharmacy services for those without insurance and Medicaid
  • NVFS: connects children and adults with free or reduced-cost medical and dental care and prescription medications. This helps families and individuals maintain good health, avoid more serious and costly health issues, and focus on higher-level needs.
  • Neighborhood Health: provides accessible, high-quality, and patient-centered primary care to patients in Alexandria, Arlington, and Fairfax County. Our comprehensive primary care model includes family medicine, internal medicine, pediatrics, dental care, behavioral health, laboratory services, pharmacy assistance, HIV care, diabetes education, and medical and non-medical case management.
  • INOVA Juniper Program: We offer primary medical care and mental health, substance abuse and case management services to HIV-positive individuals, including prophylaxis, HIV testing (including home kits), STI testing, and pregnancy services.
  • Central Virginia Health Services: We are a nonprofit that offers comprehensive care: medical, dental, behavioral health, pharmacy, and at some sites, x-ray services.
  • La Clinica del Pueblo (Washington DC): Provide comprehensive primary medical care with wrap-around services across the life spectrum;  mental health and substance use treatment; medical interpretation and language access advocacy;  community health including health education and safe spaces; and advocacy strategies to increase inclusion and health equity for Latino immigrants.
  • Fauquier Free Clinic: We provide comprehensive medical, mental health, medication and dental services to those with and without insurance.
  • Greater Prince William Health Center: Provides medical, pediatric health, OB/GYN, dental and behavioral health services.


  • NOVA's Restorative Dental Clinic: NOVA Dental is a safety net dental clinic. We provide dental care for individuals regardless of their insurance status.
  • Virginia Association of Free and Charitable Clinics: Clinics offer various health care services, including medical, dental, vision, mental health and pharmacy services. However, not all clinics provide all services, and not all areas of Virginia have free or charitable clinics. Clinics are independent, nonprofit, volunteer-driven and community-based organizations. Each clinic sets its eligibility requirements and guidelines, and all must be contacted directly for help.
  • Free Dental Care (Virginia): us is a free website maintained by users like you. Our volunteers work hard to ensure the information on these clinics is up-to-date and accurate. Services Listed: Free Dental Clinics, Sliding Fee Scale Dental Clinics, Low-Cost Affordable Dental Clinics, Nonprofit Dental Clinics. Please be aware that not all clinics are completely free. Some cities also have a low number of clinics, so in many cases, we have included nearby clinics in the search results.
  • Howard University College of Dentistry Clinic: Our clinics offer an extensive range of dental treatments and oral healthcare services for adults and children.

Because Northern Virginia Community College is unable to provide campus-based mental health services for our students, we have created a database of mental health professionals available throughout the Northern Virginia, DC, Maryland area who are licensed to provide psychotherapy and medication management. The Mental Health Provider database allows you to search for a provider by discipline, specialty, gender identification, insurance accepted, location and public transportation accessibility. We suggest you click on a provider to explore their personal statement to understand better which ones might be the best fit for you. The NOVA Mental Health Provider Referral Database also includes information on choosing a therapist and offers information and resources for addressing grief, substance abuse, Veteran's concerns and LGBTQ support.
Providers *Some may offer free services or sliding scale fees.

  • If you are over 60 and interested in taking coursework or earning a degree at NOVA, check out your tuition assistance options; you may qualify for free tuition! Contact NOVA’s Call Center at 703.323.3000 to answer any questions you may have
  • AARP: AARP Foundation is tackling senior poverty by sparking bold, innovative solutions that help vulnerable older adults build economic opportunity and social connectedness.
  • The Alliance for Retired Americans: The mission of the Alliance for Retired Americans is to ensure social and economic justice and full civil rights for all citizens so that they may enjoy lives of dignity, personal and family fulfillment and security.
  • Jewish Council for the Aging of Greater Washington: We provide transportation, adult day care, employment services, and more for our mission of helping local seniors experience the positive side of aging.
  • Volunteer Prince William RSVP: The Retired and Volunteer Program (RSVP) provides meaningful service opportunities to adults aged 55 and older, matching their skills, life experiences and interests to help meet priority needs in the community. 
  • Virginia Office for Aging Services: The Office for Aging Services helps older Virginians live as independently as possible by coordinating and providing services to help them maintain their dignity and security. Our website offers information that aging Virginians, caregivers and their families can use in making important decisions about their lives and the lives of their loved ones.
  • Senior Navigator: A 501c3 non-profit, our mission is to provide helpful, free resource information associated with aging, disabilities, post-military life, and overall well-being.
  • 40 Plus of Greater Washington: 40Plus is a non-profit, self-help, volunteer organization offering a proven system of hands-on training, peer support, networking, volunteering, and talks by experts on topics of interest to professionals in career transition.
  • Eldercare Locator - public service of the U.S. Administration on Aging connecting you to services for older adults and their families. You can also reach them at 1.800.677.1116.
  • Regional Older Adult Facilities Mental Health Support Team – intensive, multidisciplinary mental health treatment for older adults (age 65 or older) with severe mental illness, 703.228.1700
  • Aging, Disability and Caregiver Resource line – find county services, transportation, recreation/wellness programs, and community engagement opportunities, 703.324.7948

Stress Basics – Definition by Mayo Clinic Staff

Stress is a normal psychological and physical reaction to the ever-increasing demands of life. Surveys show that many Americans experience challenges with stress at some point during the year. 

Your brain comes hard-wired with an alarm system for your protection. When your brain perceives a threat, it signals your body to release a burst of hormones to fuel your capacity for a response. This has been labeled the "fight-or-flight" response.

Once the threat is gone, your body is meant to return to a normal relaxed state. Unfortunately, the constant stress of modern life means your alarm system rarely shuts off.
Stress management is important. Stress management gives you a range of tools to reset your alarm system.

Your body is always on high alert without stress management. Over time, high levels of stress can lead to serious health problems. Don't wait until stress has a negative impact on your health, relationships, or quality of life. Start practicing a range of stress management techniques today.

  • Mental Health Is Health is a website devoted to those experiencing stressors and emotional challenges. Testimonials, resources, and coping strategies are offered to remind people that they are not alone in their struggles.
  • MindYourMind is a website for emerging adults to access information, resources, and tools during tough times. Help yourself and others by sharing what you know.
  • Panic Attacks Information: Provides information for those trying to assist someone having a panic attack.

Stress Relief Apps: Apps to try out for stress relief. This information is for educational purposes only. NOVA does not endorse any of the apps. To download the apps Visit the iTunes or Google Play Store.

  • 1st ten sessions are free, and you can re-listen to them over and over.
  • The Mindfulness App: Free for the 1st month, helps you keep a score of how many minutes achieved each day.
  • Calm app: Daily Calm is a 10 min program. Calm also includes nature sounds for unguided meditation with or without a timer.
  • Get 2 billion minutes free; the only reason to pay is if you want to be able to download it and use it without an internet connection.
  • Smiling Mind app: You can choose which age group, including meditation for young children
  • Pacifica: CBT based, developed by psychologists
  • 10% Happier app: For "fidgety skeptics," get seven sessions of an introductory course and can choose topics like "happiness for grumpy people."
  • Simple Habit Meditation: Considers time of day, your mood, and how much time you have and will recommend a session; get about 53 free sessions with many different narrators.

If you or someone you know is in crisis now - please call NOVA Police at 703.764.5000 or dial 911 if you are off campus. NOVA Police Officers are trained to respond safely and respectfully to assess and appropriately intervene to assist suicidal individuals. 
For Staff/Faculty providing assistance, refer to the Staff/Faculty Protocol for Contacting Emergency Personnel for a Student in Crisis.

  • National Suicide Prevention Lifeline800.273.8255, Hours: 24 hours, 7 days a week, Languages: English, Spanish
  • PRS Crisis Link HotlineNOVA area suicide and stress hotlineWe’re here 24/7. Call us. 703.527.4077 or 1.800.273.TALK (8255)  If you use TTY, please dial 7-1-1. Text us: CONNECT to 85511
  • Crisis Text Line: Available 24/7, Text HOME to 741741
  • Community Services Board (for crisis intervention, emergency evaluation and aftercare): Available 24/7, ask for an Emergency Services clinician
  • The Samaritans Helpline: 1.877.870.4673 is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, by phone and text. They also offer online chats for those who prefer to use digital tools. They provide compassionate support to anyone feeling anxious, isolated, depressed, or suicidal. It’s confidential and free to use. 
  • Contact Helpline: 1.800.932.4616 is staffed 24/7 to offer emotional listening to those afflicted by loneliness and anxiety.
  • Silent Unity Prayer Line: 1.816.969.2000 is staffed 24/7 by trained prayer ministers who offer prayers and spiritual support to those in need. They also provide the UPray App for those who prefer to submit their prayer requests on their device.
  • American Foundation for Suicide Prevention:  Established in 1987, the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP) is a voluntary health organization that gives those affected by suicide a nationwide community empowered by research, education, and advocacy to take action against this leading cause of death. AFSP is dedicated to saving lives and bringing hope to those affected by suicide. 
  • Suicide Prevention in College: This website offers a wealth of information about suicide. However, The Office of Wellness and Mental Health does not endorse any services provided on the site.
  • SAFE Alternatives: 1.800.DONTCUT (366.8288) offers a nationally recognized treatment approach, professional network, and educational resource base committed to helping you and others end self-injurious behavior.
  • Suicide Prevention Alliance of Northern Virginia (SPAN): SPAN is a coalition committed to building on strengths and empowering communities to end suicide. SPAN began in 2014 as a collaboration between all 5 Community Service Boards in Northern Virginia and the State of Virginia and local partner organizations. 
  • Suicide Prevention Resource Center: The Suicide Prevention Resource Center (SPRC) is the only federally supported resource center devoted to advancing the implementation of the National Strategy for Suicide Prevention
  • Suicide Awareness Voices of Education (SAVE): SAVE works to prevent suicide through public awareness and education, reduce stigma and serve as a resource to those touched by suicide.
  • Lock & Talk- education and resources on the importance of securing/removing instruments of suicide (medication/guns/etc.)

NOVA is committed to serving our veteran students and their families by ensuring they can access a wealth of support. Virginia Veteran & Family Support (VVFS), formerly known as the Wounded Warriors Program, provides each campus with peer specialists who can meet with students individually on or off campus.

  • NOVA's Office of Military and Veterans Services: Our office and the Military and Program Advisors provide guidance on certification requirements and act as liaisons between NOVA and the Department of Veterans Affairs while assisting you in transitioning from the military to being a student. In addition to you using your educational benefits, our goal and mission are centered on our student's success in their academic studies, which includes making sure each recipient understands the policies and regulations of each benefit.
  • Virginia Veteran & Family Support (VVFS) 804.786.0286 (statewide)
  • Veterans Crisis Line: 800.273.8255 and press 1, text 838255, or chat
  • Veteran PTSD Info
  • Start Your Recovery: Start Your Recovery is a free, confidential tool that helps individuals take steps toward a healthy relationship with drugs and alcohol. It was developed with the input of leading clinicians, experts from the White House and SAMHSA, and people in recovery. Here, veterans can hear stories from people with similar life experiences and find the answers they need for recognizing and dealing with substance use issues.
  • Make the Connection: The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs launched Make the Connection in 2011 to help Veterans recognize mental health challenges they may be experiencing and encourage them to seek support and can find reliable information on how to cope with challenges such as posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), traumatic brain injury, military sexual trauma and transitioning from service. The site is free and accessible to everyone.
  • Succeeding in School: Advice and Resources for Transitioning to Higher Education
  • Social Isolation: Signs and Resources to Address Social Withdrawal
  • Warrior Care: The mission of the Office of Warrior Care Policy (WCP) is to proactively support wounded, ill and injured Service members in their recovery and reintegration or transition to civilian life. To achieve this, WCP focuses on its vision to ensure the nation's wounded, ill and injured Service members, their families, and caregivers are not forgotten.
  • Virginia Career Works: Eligible veterans and their spouses will receive priority for the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) Services. Follow the steps on the WIOA Program page and notify the screener you are a veteran or eligible spouse to expedite services.
  • Military and Veteran Legal Resource Guide (PDF)
  • Veterans Affairs Dental Care: If you qualify for VA dental care benefits, you may be able to get some or all of your dental care through VA. 
  • Serving Together – a coordinated network of public, private, and nonprofit organizations serving veterans, service members and their families, 1.855.738.7176