College is a time of new adventures, relationships, enlightenment and discovery. While change and growth are exciting, the reality is that they can be challenging, too. Most college students will at some point experience feelings of anxiety, sadness or stress — often accompanied by a feeling of pressure to act like everything’s just fine (in person and on social media).
While our culture has become more open to talking about mental health, many people are still hesitant to discuss their struggles. The good news is that you don’t have to handle everything on your own. At St. Edward’s, our dedicated faculty and staff care about your wellbeing and are eager to assist you as mentors, advisors and counselors. Don't hesitate to reach out to them. Your resident assistant (an upperclassman who lives on your floor), your resident director (a professional staff member who lives in your hall 24/7) and your academic advisor are good people to talk to if you’re overwhelmed personally or academically. So are staff members from the Dean of Students Office. Chances are one of them might refer you to another great resource — the Health & Counseling Center (HCC).
Up to 30% of students use the Health & Counseling Center.
The HCC is here to help you deal with physical issues — like a sports injury or bronchitis — and feelings of anxiety, depression, stress, or just being out of sorts. If you visit the HCC, you’re in good company: nearly a third of students at St. Edward’s have been there, too. And many services, including counseling sessions, are covered in the cost of tuition.
The HCC is on the first floor of Lady Bird Johnson Hall and is open Monday–Friday from 8 to 5. (And a counselor is on call after hours.) If you need help with a psychological or medical emergency during evenings or weekends, call the University Police Department at 512-448-8444 or dial 9-1-1.
The HCC is an integrated wellness center — meaning doctors, nurses and counselors all work under the same roof. No one who sees you in the lobby will know if you’re there to get a flu shot or to see a therapist. And while a friend, parent, or even a professor who’s concerned about you might suggest you visit the center, privacy regulations prevent staff from disclosing anything that happens while you’re there without your permission — unless your condition poses a risk to you or others.
The HCC can help with anxiety and depression.
They’re the two most common issues faced by college students across the nation. “The anxiety can be something that has been long term, or it can be something that’s more situational,” says Calvin Kelly, dean of Student Development and director of the HCC. “I hear students say, ‘I’m in this new environment, I’m away from home, and I’m having some adjustment issues.’ Or ‘I’m not feeling quite like myself.’”
Maybe you’re having to study more than you did in high school. Maybe you’re living with people you don't know yet ... or you have less privacy in your hall than you’re use to. Maybe you’re dealing with family issues or a loss back home. Those are all great reasons to sit down with a counselor in the HCC, where there’s no charge for your counseling sessions.
You can help someone ask for help, too.
St. Edward’s encourages — and trains — students to be good bystanders. The slogan is simple, Kelly says: “If you see something, say something. And if you can, do something.” If you notice that your friend or roommate is struggling, offer to walk him or her to the HCC. You’ll connect your friend with an expert who can help ― and you’ll demonstrate, just by being there, that no one needs to struggle alone.
By Robyn Ross
Health & Counseling Center (HCC)
Take advantage of the health, counseling and wellness services the HCC offers. We're here to help you!
Monday–Friday: 8 a.m.–5 p.m.
Lady Bird Johnson Hall
(Evenings & Weekends):
University Police Department
512-448-8444 or dial 9-1-1