Counseling and Psychological Services

Diversity Awareness Themes

  • Reminding students of the contextual factors and identity dimensions of their psychological and social experiences (including student experience as informed by gender, race, economic background, status, sexual orientation, gender identity expression, age, ability level, religious identity, and other identities (including the intersections of multiple identities)
  • Facilitate students understanding of themselves along a developmental model, allowing them to identify values as they define themselves but also as they are evolving into students’ awareness of becoming themselves.
  • Help students understand and address issues of social justice on campus toward assuming a role of ethically engaged citizenship.

Mental Health Awareness Themes

  • Challenging the prohibition of vulnerability and the stigma around emotional expression.
  • Promoting mindfulness and an orientation to the present as a helpful practice and life approach.
  • Help students recognize the pervasiveness of fear in their struggles and discomforts
  • Re-framing the help-seeking stigma to an opportunity for growth
    • Explaining accessibility of CAPS, clarifying “wait times” to be seen
  • Providing accurate information about common mental health problems in a way that fosters empathy for those struggling with such issues

Social Connections Themes

  • Promote peer-helping relationships and formation of mutually trustworthy connections, ranging from platonic friendship to sexual relationships.

Academic Success Themes

  • Challenge students to deconstruct the concepts and terms that guide their perceptions and actions.
    • Definition of Success (relative to values and social norms)
    • Definition of Strength (relative to weakness or vulnerability)
    • Definition of Intelligence (with respect to distinction between intellectual and emotional intelligence)
    • Assumptions about Pursuing Control (and how driven by fear)
    • Paradigms around competitiveness and perfection
  • Facilitate student identification of their academic values, needs, and other experiences that inform their decision-making and goal-setting

Wellness and Life Skills Themes

  • Promoting mindfulness and an orientation to the present as a helpful practice and life approach.
  • Help students recognize the pervasiveness of fear in their struggles and discomforts
  • Helping students who struggle when interacting with uncertainty