Updated: May 20, 2020
To kick off our e-Fiorello series, let’s explore self-care and wellness for students, especially during this period of distance learning and pandemic panic! Recently, in our online weekly meetings, HSAC members have been thinking about how we are taking care of ourselves both emotionally and physically as we navigate through these turbulent times. Luckily, many school departments are providing remote services to students as a way to continue facilitating our well-being. For one, the Wellness Center, which normally offers short-term individual counseling by mental health professionals in person, will be continuing to do so over the phone and by email. These tele-counseling services for students will be available every weekday. The Wellness Center can help students through a variety of issues, including family difficulties, issues adjusting to college life, stress and anxiety, depression, and more.
The Women’s Center and the LGBTQIA Safe Zone Hub at LaGuardia have also teamed up to provide Virtual Support Circles. Much like regular group counseling, students can find community and guidance within these weekly online groups among their fellow peers and other group facilitators, based on specific areas of interest and concern. With at least two topics covered every day during the week, students will have great flexibility and options in choosing a group to join. The Virtual Support Circle series will continue through June, and will be hosted on the Cisco Webex Meetings platform, so be sure to download the free Webex desktop app to participate in a Support Circle. In addition to these Virtual Support Circles, other digital support services are being provided by the Women’s Center and the LGBTQIA Safe Zone Hub. During this time, students may inquire and learn more about the programs and resources offered by these specific departments. These meetings do not require students to schedule an appointment, rather, one can simply “drop-in” online on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 2 - 4 PM, and on Fridays from 12 - 2 PM. It’s never been easier to stay connected with our school services! Besides these online services offered by LaGuardia, students can find various ways to cope with stress and stay mindful of their wellness. Liberal Arts: Deaf Studies major Gicelle Flores has shared what she has been doing to stay calm during this time, explaining, “To stay relaxed, I watch many shows or movies on Netflix. I also try to spend time with my family, and when we eat together at dinner, we always try to joke around and talk about other subjects besides the pandemic so we don’t worry too much. For college, I do my homework and study so I don’t fall behind in my classes.” Indeed, trying not to constantly dwell on the COVID-19 induced chaos around us can be very difficult, but being mindful of our own stress and the activities we choose to relieve these feelings is essential to taking care of ourselves at this moment. Be sure to connect with the people that will support your well-being, whether that’s online through one of LaGuardia’s many services, or with those that are close to you, like friends and family.