Peer counseling is a key resource

Trained+peer+counselors+Michela+Smith+and+Akhil+Shah+discuss+the+importance+of+thier+work+at+GBHS.

Sidney Sewell

Trained peer counselors Michela Smith and Akhil Shah discuss the importance of thier work at GBHS.

  Granite Bay High has many resources to offer its students, one being the Peer Counseling program.

  Peer Counseling offers stress relief workshops, one-on-one counseling, group lunches for transfer students and more.

  Some students enrolled in the class have specific roles. For example, seniors Jessica Martin and Nick Fisher are program managers.

  “We oversee the program committee and the campus committee, assign referred students to peer counselors, assess the new peer counselors and teach lessons,” Fisher said.

  Both managers help coordinate parts of the program, such as the stress-relief workshops.

  These workshops are available every Wednesday at both lunches and include activities such as rock painting, cookie decorating and slime-making.

  “They help stress by being a calm environment where students can go to put their worries aside and take a break from the usual school stress,” Fisher said.

  The students put up posters all over the school in order to raise awareness for the lunch activity.

In my opinion, the hardest part of Peer Counseling is getting the word out about our program and how much we can help students.”

— Jessica Martin

  “In my opinion,” Martin said, “the hardest part of Peer Counseling is getting the word out about our program and how much we can help students.”

  However, in order to be able to help  students, members of the program must undergo counseling training.

  “Students that take this class go through training to be ready to talk to others,” junior Cassie Cantemir said. “Everything is confidential.”

     In addition to all of its services, the Peer Counseling program also coordinates presentations to health classes every semester about high school in general.

  “I love helping all of the students on campus whenever I can, no matter how small,” Martin said.

  According to Martin, the peer counseling class is a “little family.”

 “I chose to enter (the class) because I knew you get really close with everyone in the class,” junior Ellen Taylor said.

  The program works a lot on getting the members close and comfortable with one another.

Anyone who is interested in helping students better their mental health or in increasing their self-awareness should definitely apply for the class,”

— Grace Ehnen

  “Initially, being vulnerable in a lot of the team bonding activities that we do as a class to get to know each other (was hard),” said senior Grace Ehnen, the program’s campus outreach coordinator.

  Nevertheless, Ehnen thinks highly of the class.

  “Anyone who is interested in helping students better their mental health or in increasing their self-awareness should definitely apply for the class,” Ehnen said.

  Many members have stuck with the class for a while.

  “I’ve been in it for four terms now, since sophomore year,” Fisher said,  “and I joined because I wanted to become more involved in the school.”

  Peer Counseling is not only beneficial to the students who participate helped, but to the students doing the helping as well.

  “We not only learn how to communicate one-on-one with a counselee,” Cantemir said, “but these skills can be integrated in your day-to-day life.”

  Despite the lack of awareness, the Peer Counseling program is a big hit among its students.

  “I am planning on staying in the program for the rest of high school,” Martin said. “I love how supportive everyone is – no matter what it is that I’m going through.”

     The Peer Counseling program is always available and ready to talk to any GBHS student.

  Students can refer themselves on the program website, which can be found on the school website under programs. If you would like to join the class, applications are available in room 812.

 

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