What Makes Us Unique?
“We would not send divers into a deep ocean without an oxygen tank. How can we send out students throughout life without giving them the resiliency, cognitive behavioral skills, and coping mechanisms that we know are protective against mental health disorders and chronic disease?”
~ Bernadette Melnyk, Ph.D., Ohio State University College of Medicine
Just as we teach students academic and study skills to help them succeed, it is essential that we also teach them how to deal with the stressors they’re going to encounter in college (and in life). In fact, students themselves recognize this need. Increased student demand has resulted in long waitlists for life-skills courses such as NYU’s The Science of Happiness, taught by U-Thrive Educational Services Co-Directors of Curriculum Dr. Alan Schlechter and Dan Lerner.
U-Thrive Educational Services equips students with the fundamental skills to not just survive, but thrive in college and beyond. While most approaches to helping college students with their mental health tend to be reactive, U-Thrive Educational Services provides a proactive approach.
While current campus approaches to mental health support are crucial to assist students in need, it is necessary to move beyond a “band-aid” approach and recognize the importance of stopping the bleeding before it occurs.
Reactive Coping Strategies
Proactive Learning Strategies
To date, the majority of mental health support for college students is provided once there is a recognized concern and it is contingent upon the students to seek out support. U-Thrive Educational Services believes it is imperative to provide all college students with the skills and tools needed to handle the inevitable challenges faced in both college and in life.
Counseling Center Responsibility
Although increased awareness of the mental health crisis among college students has begun to normalize conversations around this important topic, supporting college student mental health cannot be the sole responsibility of counseling centers. In order to solve this crisis, students’ mental and emotional well-being must be addressed throughout the entire college campus. U-Thrive Educational Services de-stigmatizes the discussion of mental health as a “clinical” issue by mainstreaming it into the curriculum/co-curriculum as an integral, “normal” element of a college education.
Although many students do seek out mental health support during times of stress, unfortunately many who need it most do not. Rather than putting the onus on students to seek out another resource (such as an app, a peer support platform, or even increased access to therapists via telehealth), mental health support needs to be integrated within their college experience. U-Thrive Educational Services works with partners to actively expose students to mental and emotional wellness curriculum as part of their curricular or co-curricular activities.