Students coming to the Counseling Center for the first time are seen for an intial appointment to discuss their concerns and determine how counseling can help. During individual counseling, students meet weekly or sometimes bi-weekly to discuss their concerns in-depth with a counselor.
During counseling, students work to better understand themselves and cope with distressing emotions, situations, or experiences. Students often find that after counseling they have a better understanding of the connections between feelings, thoughts, and behaviors, greater involvement in healthy relationships, and an increased ability to make desired changes in their lives. Overall, counseling helps students identify and take action to meet their emotional needs in healthy ways.
Group counseling is helpful for a wide variety of concerns and all types of people. Groups are composed of approximately 5-10 students and at least 1 counselor who leads the group and is responsible for making sure the group is a safe and helpful space for all group members. Many issues are appropriate for group therapy. If group counseling is recommended by a counselor, it is because some concerns can be most effectively addressed in a group setting.
Group members discuss concerns or issues that are important to them. By sharing with each other, students learn from one another about how to cope with problems and support each other through difficult times. Groups can be particularly effective for coping with anxiety or depression, but also for students struggling with loss, unhealthy relationships, or fitting in at Bentley. There are no “rules” regarding what can or cannot be shared in group. What is important is how things are shared between members. Group facilitators help all group members share and respond to each other in a nonjudgmental manner, facilitating trust and personal growth for all members.
Group counseling is effective because too often students feel isolated and alone with the concerns that brought them counseling. Group counseling offers a chance for students to talk with others who are struggling with the same issues in a safe and confidential environment. Finding companionship and support with others who understand is the key ingredient to feeling better and becoming more effective and productive. Groups are completely confidential, just like individual therapy sessions.
The Counseling Center routinely offers a variety of groups, including:
Transitioning to College
Living with Loss/Grief
Coping with Depression
The Center for Health and Wellness also offers support groups for students with shared medical concerns. Contact CHW directly (781-891-2222) for information.