Returning from leave can definitely be a transition. There are new faces on campus, and your friends may be at a different stage of their time at Brown. That said, there are a number of ways to plug into new communities once you return.
One way to do this is to attend the “Welcome Back Dinner” for students returning from a medical leave held each semester the evening before classes start. This is largely student run and includes a panel of students who returned from a med leave in past years. Watch your email for an invitation sent from Dean Cynthia Ellis of Student Support Services in partnership with the Student Leavetaking Coordinators at the Curricular Resource Center (CRC); Peggy Chang, Director of the CRC and Associate Dean of the College; Carol Cohen, Senior Associate Dean of the College for Class Advising and Health and Personal Issues; and Dean Mary Greineder, Assistant Director and Associate Dean of Student Support Services.
A second way to connect is to attend the dinner that is hosted at the CRC a few weeks into each semester for all students returning from any type of leave. This is solely student run.
Both of these dinners are a chance to meet other people who are transitioning back into student life. After the second dinner at the CRC there are regular leavetaking potlucks also hosted by the CRC. Past, present and future leavetakers attend these. We are always working on coming up with new ways to help facilitate connection for students returning from leave, so keep an eye out on the CRC website as well as your email for more.
You can also meet with a therapist at CAPS (Counseling and Psychological Services) and/or a professional from SAS (Student Accessibility Services) if you are wondering about psychological, physical, and/or learning disabilities, and seeking additional information and services to assist you upon your return. There are also many CAPS groups you might consider attending. Finally if you are a sophomore, you could also consider engaging in BOLT (Brown Outdoor Leadership Training) described here which is a great way for all Brown students (leavetakers and non leavetakers alike) to develop deeper connections with each other.