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How Grove City’s Counseling Center Has Helped Me in College

Coming into college, I was in a pretty chaotic headspace. I had a lot of deeply rooted personal issues that I knew I needed to confront, but I did not know how to on my own. On top of that, for most people, the adjustment to college from high school tends to be overwhelming to varying degrees, and I certainly was not exempt from those feelings of discomfort. Adjusting to a new schedule, trying to make new friends, and navigating my own personal growth was a lot to handle. But thankfully, I did not need to do it on my own.

Grove City College has one of the top-ranked counseling centers in the nation. According to the 2020 Princeton Review, the College’s counseling center ranked 14th in the country, and this is for good reason.

From a strictly pragmatic view, the counseling center is incredibly convenient for students to access. It is right on campus, making it is easy to get to. There are also many hours of availability, so it is easy to get an appointment set up. They do all the heavy lifting for you when it comes to scheduling. They are able to pull up your class schedule and see what counselors have openings according to your availability, then give you a list of options to choose from. Cost for service is factored into every student’s room and board, so there is no additional fee for any sessions.

From a more interpersonal view, the counseling center has various counselors that cover a broad mix of personality types. This means students can be paired with a counselor they feel comfortable with. If a student tries out a counselor but realizes they do not feel like they can be entirely open with them, the center is more than happy to pair the student with a new counselor until they feel they have found a good match. I was able to find my counselor on the second try, but many students are happy with their first pairing.

All the counselors at the school approach tackling mental health with a Christ-centered focus. This is not to say that they give the message that “you just need to pray harder and all your problems will go away.” Rather, the counselors understand that we are all broken human beings that do not have the strength to solve all our issues on our own. They do not give advice from a place of judgment or disappointment, but rather, from a place of empathy and desire to see us get better. Furthermore, because they are counselors and not therapists, the relationship you build with the counselor is very laid back. Even though the counselors are highly trained professionals, they feel like an insightful friend instead of a cold, hard-wired psychologist.

In my experience, my counselor has been a great mentor to help me determine which issues are valid and which I am blowing out proportion. When my issues are valid, she has helped me come up with detailed methods to overcome them. When I am making things bigger than they need to be, she has taught me how to recognize my own unhealthy mental patterns so I do not create more unnecessary issues for myself in the future.

I would highly recommend for anyone at the school to take advantage of the counseling center, even if they do not think their issues are that big. Having a trained professional help me navigate personal stress from an unbiased point of view has been an incredible help in my time at college, and my experience has been so much better because of it.

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