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The Channels

The news site of Santa Barbara City College.

The Channels

The news site of Santa Barbara City College.

The Channels

The Well reopens in person with mental health services and more

Yarrow Hogan
From left, Personal Counselor and Anchor Program Coordinator Lacey Peters and Student Program Advisor and Associate Social Worker Becky Bean display hygiene kits and other resources provided by The Well on Thursday, March 11 at City College’s ECC-21 in Santa Barbara, Calif. “We are here to help, support, and encourage our students,” Bean said.

With students returning to the City College campus, The Well has once again opened its doors for in-person services.

Student Health and Wellness Center, The Well, offers hybrid services including virtual and in-person resources focusing on mental, physical, and emotional support for City College students while promoting a space of inclusion and empowerment.

Among the resources offered include group counseling sessions, wellness workshops, hygiene kits, stress relief, study rooms and basic support.

“Our goal is to promote ownership over your mental and physical health and to break the stigma around our mental health differences,” Student Program Advisor and social worker Becky Bean said.

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Beginning in January 2019, The Well was the first free-standing Wellness Center to open on any community college campus in California.

“Having accessible resources like The Well makes me feel comfortable and supported knowing that I can get the help I need whenever I need it,” Madison Podesta, a student who has struggled with mental health in the past, said.

Throughout the changes due to the pandemic, The Well was able to maintain a virtual environment helping students even when face-to-face meetings were not an option. The staff is always striving to expand the content that will benefit the students and the community.

According to statistics from March 2020-21 on The Well website, 7,400 people accessed the wellness support services while being asynchronous.

“Students often feel safer attending the virtual workshops,” Bean said. “Having the comfort of being on a computer gives the ability to try new things and feel safe.”

The website includes alternative life guides, counseling, 30 workshops throughout the semester, and a digital health and wellness series containing videos of lyrical healing, meditation, yoga, herbal studies and more.

The Well collaborates with The Santa Barbara Wellness Project to run a three-part wellness workshop. SBWP is facilitated by UCSB professors in the psychology and clinical counseling department and Ph.D. students. The workshops will be offered in English and Spanish, covering topics of wellbeing, mindfulness and skill-building.

In 2020, The Well was awarded the Exemplary Program Award by the California Community College Chancellor’s Office for equitable practices for virtual educational environments.

“I want to encourage students to know that they attend a school where mental and physical health are prioritized,” Bean said. “We believe in our students and their emotional growth and sustainability for their journey.”

The Well is located on East Campus in ECC-21. More information about the upcoming workshops and events and the in-person and remote hours are available online.

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