Rose Vhou / Lantern photographer
Procrastination can be many student’s worst enemy, especially with finals drawing near. Some students are taking advantage of stress management and study help at the Younkin Success Center.
James Beauchemin, a psychiatric counselor, organizes two Mental Skills for Stress Management workshops per quarter through the Counseling and Consultation Service office at Younkin. One workshop was Feb. 29 and another will be offered March 7.
Beauchemin said in an email to The Lantern that these classes are useful for general stress as well as specific anxieties, such as test anxiety.
“We focus on providing participants with very practical stress management techniques that they can utilize within their daily schedules,” he said. “These include meditation techniques, mindfulness, guided imagery, breathing/relaxation techniques, visualization, as well as cognitive techniques.”
Beauchemin acknowledged that stress is part of attending college, and said he hopes to help students manage their stress and realize when it is negatively affecting their lives.
“I think that students in a university setting will have stress simply by the nature of the expectations and pressures of higher education,” he said. “However, what we at CCS try to educate students about is identifying when this stress is starting to have a negative impact on their learning or daily functioning, and providing them with the resources to better manage the stressors in a healthy manner.”
Younkin offers study areas for students throughout the quarter, and according to its website, it offers extended hours beginning Wednesday of Week 10 of the quarter and is open 24 hours a day beginning the Sunday before finals. Student-athletes are given the opportunity to work with tutors, many of whom are students.
One tutor, William Hallal, who graduated with a degree in English, said he likes that he is able to still be involved on campus as a graduate.
“Tutoring has been a nice way to stay part of the academic world after graduating,” he said. “It can be hard for bookworms to do something that isn’t for a grade (after graduating), so now I get to help others work for a grade.”
Hallal said he never came to Younkin as an undergrad, but sometimes would spend a whole day there as a tutor to use the facilities.
“Before I had a parking pass … I used to spend all day here,” he said. “It’s a nice building, there’s a library and computers — it’s a nice area to spend some time in.”
Chante Meadows, a psychiatric counselor in CCS, said the office offers a quarterly eight-week program that focuses on meditation, and that the office also does outreach programs on campus, which tend to be pretty interactive.
“Outreach programs are usually done by request, and are often for organizations on campus or fraternities or sororities,” she said. “These may focus on stress, relationships, body image, depression – whatever they ask us to talk about.”
Meadows said there are counseling options available for students as individuals, couples or in groups, and that there are qi gong fitness classes.
“Qi gong is using body movement for stress management,” Meadows said.
Meadows said stress is about taking care of yourself, and qi gong can help students do that.
Weekly groups available for Winter Quarter address topics such as depression, eating disorders, homosexuality and general sexual identity issues, grief and dealing with alcohol or drugs, among others, according to a flyer in the office.
“We have a very strong groups program,” Meadows said. “A lot of our support groups — men’s groups (for those who may be gay or questioning their sexuality), SAFE (a women’s group that helps students with interpersonal skills) — those are really strong groups.”
Meadows said several groups are so large that there are two sections so that everyone can be accommodated.