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Students seek counseling

January 28, 2011

 

Counseling centers at colleges across the country have seen an uptick in use over the past few years. Monmouth College is no exception to this trend, but counselor Cindy Beadles says that’s a good thing.

“That’s a positive. Students are wanting to be well, wanting to be happy and content and they’re not falling for the old-fashioned stigma that it’s a negative to seek assistance,” said Beadles. “The things that students bring in the most are common, everyday life problems and issues.”

The increased usage of the counseling center has caused some strain on services.

“The demand outweighs what one person can do,” said Beadles.

To cope with the increased demand, Beadles has had to limit sessions, so that the center can help as many students as possible during peak times. “We want people to have free and easy access when their need presents the most and that’s when they’re going to get the best assistance.”

The counseling center also offers group counseling solutions. There is a grief group, an occasional group that deals with alcohol and drug abuse, a group for students with problematic relationships and a new group called CLASS.

Additionally, the counseling center coordinates its efforts with other campus organizations to meet the needs of students.

Students seek out the counseling center for a variety of reasons, including stress, anxiety, depression, family and relationship issues, questions of sexuality and financial issues. Beadles encourages students to come in to talk about their problems before they become more than they can handle. She says the center’s focus is largely preventive care.

“If we address [issues], then they’re not going to turn into bigger issues that may cause symptoms and problems that are more serious,” said Beadles. “It may not take more than a session or two just to kind of redirect things.”

To address the growing demand, there are plans to move the counseling center to a larger space in the basement of Polling Hall. The new space would allow the center to have a private waiting room. There has also been discussion about bringing in another counselor in the future.

Students seeking counseling can set up an appointment by calling 309-457-2114.

BY WESLEY TEAL
Copy/Layout Editor

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