Counseling center offers support to students stressed about the hurricane

By By Allie Schulte

By Allie Schulte

The U Counseling Center offers resources for students dealing with loss or stress caused by events such as Hurricane Katrina.

“It is normal for students to be affected by these kinds of events and to feel unsettled by them,” Brian Riedesel, a staff member for the U Counseling Center, said. “The depth of the effect is usually based on their proximity to the event.”

Proximity is usually determined by either physical or emotional distance to the event, Riedesel said.

For example, students who may have had similar experiences in their lives and can relate to the victims’ situations are often affected. Although most students in Utah may not be directly related to the event, many still experience stress as a result.

“It is important for students to deal with the stress that they may be feeling,” Glade Ellingson of the U Counseling Center said. “Everyone has different ways to handle stressful situations, and it is important to deal with stress in healthy ways.”

Both Ellingson and Riedesel recommended exercise, regular sleeping and eating habits and meditation as healthy ways to deal with stress.

They also recommended that students balance out the amount of time they spend watching media reports about the hurricane with other activities.

“If it is constantly on your mind, it’s good to take a break,” Riedesel said.

Students may also find it helpful to volunteer their time or money to help the victims.

“It is also important for people to be supportive of one another in times of disaster,” Ellingson said. “Students should talk about their feelings to their friends and family and also be supportive and willing to listen to others who may be struggling.”

The Counseling Center, located in Room 426 of the Student Services Building, offers individual and group therapy for students. Call 581-6826 to schedule an appointment or visit

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