Seton Hill Counselors’ Advice on How to Acclimate to College Life 

By: Katie Reese

(SETON HILL, Pa.) –  Classes at Seton Hill University have been back in session since Aug. 23 

Some feel very comfortable on campus.

I really like living on campus now. Everything has adjusted really smoothly for me, and I am able to relax. I didn’t have too much trouble finding people to hang out with, so I never feel lonely or bored,” said Seton Hill freshman Maddie Flory. 

Others feel just as nervous about being on campus as they did the day they moved in.

“While I’m more comfortable now, I still feel very overwhelmed,” said a Seton Hill Freshman who wishes to stay anonymous.

The counseling services at Seton Hill are here to help. 

“The purpose of the Counseling Center is to be a private space for students to feel safe talking about mental health and prioritizing their own well-being,” said counselor Stephanie Lowry

Whether you are still not used to college life, need to talk about things going on in your personal life, or just need some advice, SHU’s counseling service is here to help and they’re just a few clicks away. 

“They can check out the Counseling Center website for reading and resources. They can self-schedule an appointment by clicking the link at the bottom of mySHU. They can email with questions,” said Lowry.

What can students do if they find the idea of reaching out for help daunting? What if students simply do not have the time? Counselor Adam Korte said, “there are opportunities for wellness everywhere.”

“I’ve heard from some of my colleagues how the students take an active role. [They] reach out to peers, they are having events to talk about de-stressing and even hold free yoga before finals,” said Korte.

Along with students, there are many other resources around campus that can help.

“Just about really every person [faculty member] I have worked with, especially in my area, which is student affairs, is always mental health forward,” said Korte. 

“The care team works behind the scenes to receive any concern that faculty, staff, and students may have and try to reach out to make sure students have access to resources and are doing okay,” Said Lowry 

“If they [faculty] notice something- if you’re missing, if you seem down, a lot of times they will email that care team and say ‘Hey, keep an eye out for so and so, they look like they’re mentally distressed,’” Korte explained.

Outside of other students and faculty, SHU offers many other resources set out to help students.

“The Counseling Center is working to increase awareness and visibility of our services on campus by meeting with RAs, orientation leaders, and other staff,” said Lowry.  “The Counseling Center offers therapy dogs twice a week and is working on providing more public-facing events to increase mental health awareness; we’re partnering with Matt Zielinski for an event in October and [are] supporting students who are planning events for World Mental Health Awareness Day on October 5”     

If you are feeling stressed or down, but do not want to talk to someone, there are many ways to help yourself without talking to someone else.      

“Do not overwork yourself! That is the absolute number one,” said Korte. “You can absolutely pull an all-nighter, you can study for six hours. But you will retain and understand more if you give yourselves breaks. If you study for four hours and nap for two, you will probably gain more information than plowing through six hours of work.”

Korte said that many college kids spend so much time doing stuff for school, that they forget to do things for themselves.    

 “You are not perfect and no one expects you to be perfect,” said Korte. “Letting some of that irrational stress off of your shoulders will help,” 

He said to plan everything if need be: studying, clubs, relaxation, sleep, and even eating.

Korte mentioned that the best thing students can do to create good connections and relationships is to get involved with the school’s array of clubs, sports, and events.

“Get involved in something. If you are in a sport or club, that is an instant group of possibilities. Be a part of the college experience,” said Korte

If you feel stressed, depressed, overwhelmed, or anxious and need to talk to someone, whether that be immediately or within the next week, there are many people on and off campus who can help.

  • Talk to your roommate or a trusted friend
  • Talk to one of your RA’s
  • Talk to a professor or mentor.
  • Talk to Health Services. They are located on the 5th floor of Admin.
  • Schedule with the Counseling Center. It is free and open to all students. You will talk to a licensed counselor. Their website can be found at the bottom of the mySHU page.
  • Crisis Hotline: 988
  • Talk to the Blackburn Center, which is here to help with domestic and sexual violence: 1-888-832-2272