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Date of Award


Document Type

Dissertation - Pacific Access Restricted

Degree Name

Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)


Educational Administration and Leadership

First Advisor

Dennis Brennan

First Committee Member

Deborah Balfanz

Second Committee Member

Lynn Beck

Third Committee Member

Joanna Royce-Davis


This study was designed to analyze student wellness behaviors. The goal was to provide meaningful discussion regarding which behaviors students at a top ten university are engaging in and how that may contribute to their ability to thrive academically. Variables such as gender, year enrolled, and GPA were analyzed to arrive at recommendations on how students personally interested in maximizing their academic performance and ability to thrive on campus could incorporate behaviors that have been successful for their peers into their daily routines. Student development theory was also a component of this study. Undergraduate and graduate student wellness behaviors were comparatively analyzed to better comprehend wellness behaviors throughout the stages of enrollment. The study was designed to analyze what phase of development, through the lens of self-authorship, students were engaging in an effort to articulate how these top ten university students are "making their own ways." This study found that top ten university students are more positioned to thrive academically and perhaps beyond based on their engagement in wellness behaviors. The study also found that there are relationships among the variables gender, year enrolled, and GPA and specific wellness constructs such that different groups of students require different programmatic options. Based upon these findings, recommendations are offered for the incorporation of various wellness programmatic pieces into a university's academic and extracurricular services. Recommendations for other top ten Universities are offered, as well as ways in which non top ten Universities can innovatively adapt programs to support student wellness development with limited human and financial resources.





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