Students Learn How to Deal with Anxiety


Amy Pietri, Contributing Writer

Valencia College East Campus held a workshop Tuesday to teach students how to cope with anxiety. The one-hour workshop was entitled, “Hello Anxiety! I am not afraid!”

The event was group-therapy inspired with roughly 20 students attending. Instead of presenting lectures, the workshop was set as if the students were having a group therapy session.

The Anxiety and Depression Association of America states, “Anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the U.S., affecting 40 million adults in the United States age 18 and older, or 18.1 percent of the population every year. But only 36.9 percent of them receive treatment for it.” Valencia College is trying to change that by helping students reach out to mental health services offered by the college, and providing a safe space for them to speak.

The event coordinator, who asked not to be identified, shared how anxiety impacted her own life. One night, after personal events in her life, she became overcome with anxiety. She described the physical sensation “as if my heart was going to beat out of my chest”. She later shared how she came up with her own mantra (words that activate particular kinds of energy in a different parts of the body) that helped her relax when anxious.

India More, a Business Administration student who attended the event shared her reasoning for coming to the event. “Anxiety spikes up before or after midterms because you have so many things you want to do and so little time,” said More.

Another student, Elizabeth Bauza, said that she wished that Valencia would hold more of these since she found it helpful and felt relief mentally from them.

Valencia College offers a Student Assistance Program associated with Bay Care Behavioral Health. It is free, anonymous, and eligible students are offered three free face-to-face sessions.

Correction: The Valencia Voice used the wrong definition of “mantra” for this story. The event coordinator clarified that a mantra is a positive phrase or statement used to provide motivation and encouragement, and to focus the mind to achieve a goal.