Counselling appointments more ‘accessible’ say students 

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Lay it out for me Chip, what’s got you feeling down? Lee Lim

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Mental health is an important part of overall wellness, and something many students struggle with. Most students deal with tough times once in a while, which may moderately or severely affect a student’s well-being or ability to complete schoolwork or attend class. Seeing this issue arise many years ago, the University of Regina established professional counselling. Counselling at the U of R gives students access to a mental health professional who can help them deal with issues in their day-to-day lives.  

To better understand how these accommodations help, I interviewed Abby Atkins, a social justice student, and Hope Rittwage, a non-major student. Abby has used the service once, and Hope has and is continuing to use the university’s counselling service. Both interviews can help to get a real look into how the U of R handles mental health. 

Atkins said it was easy to access the counselling services.I had looked options up online because I was in a time of need,” they said. “The process was quite simple and easy, although I had to go in person when I requested Zoom. That was a bit scary at first.” 

Rittwage agreed the services were easily accessible, and the front desk was helpful.I found it easiest to go to Student Affairs in Riddell,” said Rittwage. “They’ll give you a link to an online source where you answer questions to help pair you with a counsellor. Then they will email you a schedule, then you must pick a date to either meet up in person or on Zoom.” 

Atkins explained they got what they needed from the session.I think it was helpful,” said Atkins. “It wasn’t what I was expecting, but it was what I needed at the time. It helped with visualizing my emotions and seeing my setbacks with my issue, so I would say it did what it needed to. The waiting room was a little anxiety-creating though, as it was very empty, quiet, similar to a doctor’s office.” Rittwage agreed the appointment steered her in a positive direction. 

For a free appointment, Atkins recommends using the counselling service. “I would only recommend it to people who have specific problems or one issue at a time,” they said. “For people with more ongoing issues, something more intense or continuous would be better.”  

Rittwage agrees “It is helpful because you are getting help for mental issues that can really affect your school, I use it often to help me with my PTSD.”  

Mental health has been a taboo subject in the past, but now it’s becoming more common for people to seek out counselling or therapy services. Many people assume counselling is only for people with diagnosed mental illnesses, but that’s not at all the case. It can be helpful for general mental health or to help navigate tough situations or choices. Everyone has tough times in their lives, and as a U of R student, it can be helpful to give counselling services a try when times get tough. To access U of R counselling, go to http://uregina.ca/student/counselling/ for more info on what is offered, or visit the Student Wellness Centre at 119 Paskwāw Tower 8:15 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. on weekdays. 

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