By Nick Stern, Copy Editor
Undergraduates can find themselves with many problems aside from the obvious stress that comes with trying to get that degree, but luckily for students, different support groups of many different shapes and sizes are springing up on campus, including the four groups listed below.
Students Support Sobriety
Child Youth Family Development major, Denise Savchuk has succeeded in getting a sobriety support group officially approved by CNM and has been working quite hard to get the program up and running by the fall semester, she said.
The name of the support group is Students Support Sobriety and is a program that is intended to follow in the footsteps of the traditional Alcoholics Anonymous organization, she said.
Savchuk believes that there are a large number of students who are willing to attend the meetings, which reflects the necessity and benefits the program could provide for many people who are working on their sobriety, she said.
“I feel that there is a dire need for it and I have gotten tons of emails regarding when the meeting is,” she said.
Unfortunately, despite the large interest in the support group among students, Savchuk is short of starting the meetings until a proper organization is grounded, she said.
To create a board for the group Savchuk would only need to recruit five members, but so far the large number of people that have been interested have been strictly interested in showing up for the meetings as guests and Savchuk is unwilling to have the meetings without the assurance of longevity, because the organization would provide such an important service to the large number of people who need it, she said.
“I believe I just have not come across the right people. I really want this organization to carry on. I want the backing of CNM to support this and they are-they want it as much as I do but I am not willing to just have any meeting,” she said.
Speakers are intended to inspire and motivate students who are newer and currently trying to walk the path of sobriety while also trying to complete their education, she said.
“We need to hear these people that have already walked this path. People who are currently on the road to recovery can see that it can, and has been done,” Savchuk said.
To contact the sobriety support group, email Savchuk at firstname.lastname@example.org or Lori Gallegos at email@example.com.
Mothers and Mothers To Be
CNM Moms and Moms to be is a support group that is directed at helping mothers who are also trying to make it through school as well, Treasurer Torrey Moorman said.
The group came to be when a number of mothers decided that CNM needed a resource where mothers could get support and education about breastfeeding, access to parenting classes and support, and access to any other resources that could benefit mothers or future mothers who are also enrolled in school, she said.
“A whole bunch of mothers were like ‘let’s at least have a support group at school so that we had a place to have a support group at school,’” She said.
The lack of official status has led to a lack of students who show up regularly along with limited potential candidates that could be elected as officers which would then help make the support group an official student organization, Moorman said.
“This term was primarily supporting three pregnant moms and so we did a lot of pre-natal education classes. We talked about how to make breastfeeding easier, we talked about the fact that it is the act of breastfeeding that increases IQ and changes oral development,” Moorman said.
There is a plan for having meetings during the summer semester of 2014 and, Moorman said the goal is to have meetings at the Montoya campus on Thursdays and then at Main campus on Tuesdays, she said.
The times have not been decided yet because the room locations are still being figured out, but the meetings will most likely be held between 9 a.m. and noon, she said.
If there are any mothers who are interested in receiving more information about the support group and discovering the times for the future meetings, their best bet is to find the support group on Facebook. com/moms.moms2b, Moorman said.
The group has also anticipated the need for a new president, vice president, secretary, and a treasurer after the fall semester and would greatly appreciate having enough people to run, Moorman said. To contact Moms and Moms to be support group email Torrey Moorman at firstname.lastname@example.org.
National Alliance on Mental Illness
The NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness) on Campus support group is another group that is in the process of becoming an official student organization which is meant to support students and the family of students with mental health issues, Disability Resource Center Counselor Kate Rogers said.
NAMI has helped people by using support groups which cover how to deal with mental health issues and also provides support for family members to help educate them on how to support their loved ones in the best manner possible, Rogers said.
“Family members can be so influential in people’s health and so family members got training on what to do in certain situations so they could support the person and keep that person out of the hospital or out of institutions,” Rogers said.
The support group focuses on and is open to all students whether they are diagnosed themselves with mental health issues, related to someone who is diagnosed, or even just interested in learning to be supportive, Rogers said.
Educational meetings and events are anticipated to be scheduled on a regular basis for the fall semester of 2014 and the current task is getting a solid board and proper bylaws together so the group can become an official student organization, Rogers said.
“What they are really hoping to do is have events that help educate people about mental health. We want to be sure to be involved in student health fairs and things like that,” she said.
Rogers believes the support group is beneficial to students because students who have problems and feel uncared for will have a chance to talk to people who really do care, and are willing to discuss problems and provide the support that might make all the difference in someone’s life and educational success, she said.
“If you don’t feel like anybody here actually cares, you might just stay home. So if you have a support group you can call up and say ‘I’m really feeling depressed’ somebody might say ‘hey I’ll meet you after class and we can talk,’” Rogers said.
The community could also benefit immensely from the support, Rogers said, because by learning the proper education about different mental diseases, people will learn just how invalid the stigmas are and learn to be compassionate and understanding towards people with these issues.
Rogers advises anyone who is interested in contacting NAMI on Campus for support, interest in volunteering, or for information can contact Rogers through her email at Krogers25@cnm.edu, Rogers said.
The LGBTQ Plus support group is a group that is intent on creating safety zones on campus and providing safety training to create such safety zones, all for the benefit and support of people of all genders and sexualities, Treasurer Torrey Moorman said, who participates in both Moms and Moms to be, and the LGBTQ support groups.
The group has a goal which is to let people know that no matter what their gender or sexuality is, it is important to communicate openly and honestly about tough subjects, she said.
“What we are trying to do is-people need to know that information whether you are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, questioning, or whether you are straight. You need to know how to have good communication skills to talk about these things. You need to know where to go to get tested. You need to know how to get tested,” she said.
The support group plans on holding its meeting during the summer semester every Tuesday but the exact location and time is still yet to be announced, Moorman said.
The group has also planned to have a safer sex workshop on Friday, May 30 and has already confirmed two speakers for the event, she said.
The workshop is meant to cover everything from the basics of safer sex like using condoms to the tougher subjects like talking to partners about getting tested, Moorman said.
“We are going to be covering the basics but also the nitty gritty stuff that people do not want to talk about like how do you talk to somebody about being safe during sex, how do you talk about being tested before you have sex because it’s not just vaginal or anal that can cause problems but the fastest growing trait of oral cancer is in the 15 to 25 age range from oral sex without a condom,” Moorman said.
The meetings are planned to be more like a lounge and coffee situation where people can choose to stay as long or short as they please, she said.
If any participants have questions, concerns, or personal problems they will have the option to seek help during the meetings and will even have the option to ask for a mentor, Moorman said.
Moorman also said there is a need for a CNM faculty member who would be willing to support the CNM LGBTQ Plus community, she said.
“These support groups are helpful because it is hard enough to be in college. There are always stresses and we need to eliminate all the things that should not be stresses,” Moorman said.
To contact the LGBTQ Plus group contact Torrey Moorman at email@example.com.