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Colorado Springs colleges offer mental health resources 

click to enlarge COURTESY UCCS
  • Courtesy UCCS

Colorado Springs’ three main non-military higher education institutions each offer mental health resources for students, though they take slightly different approaches. Here’s how they help students deal with depression, anxiety and other mental health needs, as well as maintain a healthy mindset.

The University of Colorado at Colorado Springs offers enrolled students counseling services for $20 a session. This includes family and couples therapy, as well as individual therapy.

Several support groups meet weekly on campus, dealing with topics such as eating disorders and grief.

Among the college’s other efforts: UCCS offers an eight-week happiness program to help students develop coping skills and shift their outlook, graduate student Morgan Lavender explained at a recent conference on suicide prevention. Fitness Buddies, which pairs students to work out together, is aimed at helping participants develop healthy, supportive relationships that are crucial in maintaining mental wellness.

Colorado College’s Wellness Resource Center uses a stepped-care model for student mental health. At the low-intensity end of the spectrum, this could include an online screening or self-help resources like books, apps and websites. Higher-intensity care would mean individual therapy at the college’s counseling center or referrals to off-campus treatment.

The college also offers peer-to-peer support groups, as well as workshops on topics like journaling and mindful stress management, meant for building resilience. The chaplain’s office has weekly groups for discussing spirituality, mindfulness and meditation.

The counseling center at Pikes Peak Community College offers a variety of options: solution-focused therapy, a goal-directed approach to working through problems; reality therapy, a problem-solving method focused on the present rather than the past; cognitive behavioral therapy, which aims to teach healthier thought patterns and emotional response; and EMDR (eye movement desensitization and reprocessing), a technique for processing past trauma.

PPCC also operates food pantries and mobile markets for students who need assistance, and offers child care on a sliding fee scale. Such services help reduce stressors caused by external factors so that students can focus on school.

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