Health and wellness

We offer health and wellness services to help students build proactive, lifelong approaches to staying well.

Health and wellness services

Your physical and mental health and wellbeing are uniquely yours and crucial to your success at RISD. To support the unique needs of art and design students RISD offers several resources to help you stay healthy.

RISD’s Health Center is your first line of defense for confidential, quality health care, whether you've got a minor illness or injury or are concerned with a more serious health problem. They are your on-campus urgent care center.

Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) is here to support your mental health and well-being through confidential and personalized counseling, referral and medication management services.

Health Education and Promotion (HEP) oversees evidence-informed health promotion strategies, policies, programs, and student peer-educators which work in harmony to support student's wellbeing.

In the event of an emergency, EMT-certified Public Safety officers, a Residence Life staff member and an on-call CAPS counselor are available 24/7.

The CARE Network

The CARE Network program serves as a campus resource team dedicated to assisting students who may be in distress or experiencing challenging life circumstances. CARE works to coordinate, consult, and provide interventions when students face difficulties. The primary focus of the team is to take a proactive approach in identifying students who are struggling and provide early intervention, resources, and referrals both on and off campus. Our hope is to create a culture of care where the RISD community can work together to be active bystanders and reach out for support when needed. To refer a student, please visit

Disability support services

Disability Support Services (DSS) assists RISD students who have cognitive (learning), psychological and physical disabilities. Students are entitled to reasonable accommodations under the Americans with Disabilities Act and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act. Students seeking accommodations must register with Disability Support Services.

Keep in mind that accommodations may take time to arrange, some up to 2-4 weeks. Academic accommodation requests are accepted on a rolling basis; there is no deadline for submission. However, in order to receive prompt accommodations and services, students are advised to submit a request with documentation prior to the beginning of the semester. Accommodations are not retroactive.

Disability Support Services offers time management drop in hours and pop up events that are open to all RISD students. One-on-one time management coaching is available to students registered with Disability Support Services.

RISD Housing accommodations need to be registered through Residence Life via the RISD Student Life Portal.

Info for parents and family

Families are a vital part of a student’s wellness support system and we value the role you'll continue to play in their health and success. At the same time, it's important to note that while at RISD your student will be afforded the benefits of confidential health care. Under Rhode Island privacy laws and federal HIPAA regulations, all student health records are confidential and cannot be discussed without clear documented permission from the student, except in serious circumstances.

Before you arrive

As an incoming student, you'll need to complete the following before the start of classes:

  • Share your medical history with RISD and arrange for health insurance coverage
  • Talk to your parents about their future level of involvement in your medical care
  • Get required immunizations
  • Plan ahead for special health care needs
  • Communicate your need for disability services

The Health and Wellness site provides more details about how to complete these steps.

What to bring

Remember to pack the following for your move to campus:

  • All medications (if applicable) and a plan for how you will get refills (there are a number of pharmacies in the area, but most students use the CVS at nearby Providence Place Mall)
  • Wallet-sized list or phone note of medical history, medications, primary care physician and specialists' names
  • Health insurance card if using home health insurance (students using RISD Student Health Insurance Plan will get insurance information within the first week)
  • A small first aid kit including bandaids, thermometer and any over-the-counter medications you might need