Getting help around campus


Anxiety may not be something that anyone can sort out on their own. The resources provided on campus makes it so no Titan ever feels alone, and guides them to see what best works for them. 

After the pandemic, anxiety rates increased, and after being thrown back into school and normal settings, students felt they had little guidance on how to deal with these whirlwinds of emotions. 

The counselors office is always open as a safe space to welcome all students. Counselor Karly Wardwel says there are many options to make students feel secure. “Everyone works with different techniques. Some of my favorites to use that I see are also the most effective are breathing activities or even coloring,” Wardwell said. 

One choice is the fact that we have a school therapist on campus, Ms. Struck. While she is out of office right now, Mr. Edgar is filling in and is more than open to meeting with students. Peer Counselors are also trained specifically with tools to support students who feel like they are struggling and who may feel more comfortable going to someone their own age. 

These student mentors are available if a student needs someone to talk to at any point throughout the day. In the office, there is a list of contact information as well as pictures of each mentor in order for the students to reach out and identify the student counselors. 

Counselor Jerilyn Padua Reyes also tries to make the campus a soft, welcoming environment. In her office with visually appealing materials, like bright decorations and banners, she is able to help talk students through their struggles. “By taking time to breathe and air-out feelings with things such as fidgets and candy, even with the increase of anxiety before a pandemic, we try to destress and take their minds off of their problems before finding a solution,” Reyes said. 

Jerrah Smith, another counselor on campus said that she capitalizes on the calming cart they put together in the office. The cart is made up of different items, such as play-doh, fidgets, coloring books and more. 

Helping students is the counselors’ main priority, and they want their students to feel welcome. “We have a calming cart for students to help calm down. Sometimes a student just needs space instead of talking, and that’s okay. They’re more than welcome to stay here and rewind, and students will never be in trouble when coming to the counselor,” Smith said, “We are here to help guide students and gauge what their next move is.” 

Each counselor wants the best for every Titan, and is always open to a conversation in order to help them succeed. For anxiety that needs more than self calming, counselors may refer them to our school therapist who is always available to help, or Mending Matters who works on engaging with students to provide easy, accessible mental health support that is needed.