Video: Taking Care of The Mental Health Well-Being of Students, Faculty and Staff

(Amanda Thompson Speaks)

Permission, I'd like to go ahead and welcome everybody to said session. My name is Ms. Thompson, and thank you for choosing to be a part of this breakout session today as part of the Sustainability Summit. For those of you who have never participated in a WebEx before, please use option to ask your questions that you're going to be collected during the presentation and it will be answered towards the end of that. Captioning is available for what you did in the chat function. You'll use the navigation bar that pops up at the bottom of your screen to access this function. At the end of the webinar, you'll be APP valuation. We fill it out when it pops up on your screen, your feedback really helps us improve future events. This webinar is going to be recorded and it will be available on our website as soon as the transcript was available and it has been captioned with ADA disability guidelines. Okay. Well, today's our guest speaker is Dalia Blell. Dalia is a first-generation college graduate. She grew up in South Texas with a large extended family of mixed immigration status she was raised to value family education and strong work ethic. Growing up, she spent from a great harvesting fruits and vegetables with her family in migrant farm worker camps in the midwest. By the time she was 23, she had earned a bachelor's degree from Pan-American University and a Master of Social Work from the University of Michiganshe is a licensed clinical social workers supervisor. She is practiced as a clinician for over 30 years in various settings, including community health to shelters, school social work services, aimed higher education student support services. For the last 13 years, she has held the position of professional counselor and provided mental health services to students on the Dallas College Northlake campus. She also served as the chair of the Dallas College Professional Counselors Council and has led several projects that support the mental health and well being of students, faculty and staff. Some of these include mental health first days, Nova crisis response team training, online counseling services for students, and the tau Connect. with that I'd like to go ahead and turn it over to our presenter.

(Dalia Blell Speaks)

Thank you, Amanda, and welcome everyone. I used to be the chair of the Professional Counselors Council. I'm now the Assistant Director of Counseling for Northlake campus and I'm really excited at everyone joining us today for our presentation. Taking care of the mental health well being our students, faculty and staff. And I'm gonna let the rest of my team introduced themselves because they are just as skilled and valuable as I am to our students and our Dallas College community. Quinessa you want to get started?

(Quinessa Speaks)

Sure, good afternoon, everyone. My name is Quinessa Johnson I'm a licensed professional counselor, and I'm a faculty counselor at the Cedar Valley campus.

(David Speaks)

I'm David Thompson I'm also a licensed professional counselor and I serve El Centro campus in our counseling services.

( Grenalda Speaks)

Hi, everyone. Good afternoon. My name is Grenalda Spears and I'm also a licensed professional counselor and I am at Northlake.

(Dalia Speaks)

You want to change the slide for me David? Ok. So we're going to be speaking to you today about the challenges that we're experiencing during this time of uncertainty. We're going to reference the change cycle. And we're gonna ask that that you reflect on it as we go through this presentation. We're also going to share the survey results from recent national surveys on the impact of Covid 19 on college student mental health and communities of color. We'll present the American Council of Education is recommendations for supporting campus well-being and how Dallas College counseling services is collaborating with various teams to implement these strategies. And we're going to tell you about TAO. We're really excited about TAO as well as some of the other mental health wellbeing programming that we have going on for 2020/2021. And hopefully we'll have the opportunity to have you experienced a TAO mindfulness relaxation activity if WebEx cooperates that is. Next slide. Well, since the pandemic, I've actually had the pleasure of doing this presentation several times. The first time was right when we went into shelter in place, I was asked by marketing communications to present to them. And so I call that presentation at that time chance of a lifetime because it was really my way of reframing this experience that we're, that so many people were describing as very stressful, something we needed to survive and get through together, not that that isn't true. but I really felt that things were so much out of my control that I needed to I needed to choose a name for the my experience. So one that was going to work for me. And I felt that this belief about having a space where I was able to survive and thrive was so important that no matter what came next, I'm going to have this space to grow. You know, just like in nature when a seed takes root in a really, really harsh conditions. I mean, I have seen trees growing from inbetween cement cracks. They figured it out so, I thought I need to have that kind of space as we were going through this pandemic. And although go going remote was initially really challenging for me because I was not either technology refugee. I was not born on that technology ship. So I asked you had to jump on board is took a pandemic for me to like go full technology. And now of course I have a totally new vocabulary.

Now I'm using words like I'm jumping on a call. I'll see you on Teams, joined me on WebEx. Not that it's not challenging, but it's, it's something that I've learned to get, you know, I've gotten used to do as well as collaboration. I mean, I always used to collaborate before, but when we went into shelter in place, it kinda became an essential need. And even though we continue to social distance. You know, we've had to learn how to work virtually so that we can get back on campus safely. And now some of us are eating, even meeting with students in person. I'm conducting counseling services in-person wearing a mask. Something never in my mind that I imagined that I would be doing something like that but I have been and I wear hearing aids. So it's been challenging for me because people are wearing a mask. I'm wearing a mask. So I ended up having to buy a Bluetooth microphone that syncs with my hearing aid. And I had to learn that whole process of how to do that. And on top of that all what is happened? Dallas College, we're now Dallas College, our campuses are location. They're not colleges anymore. And we're going through this major reorganization. And of course not to mention the presidential election and all the national unrest and that disparity that is surfacing.

Next slide, David. This is the change curve. It's based on a model or originally developed in the sixties by Elizabeth Kubler Ross, to explain the grieving process, to explain what a person went through when they lose a loved one. Now this change cycle has been used to explain, is the, any human response to change. So grief is a part of, and it's no news that we're going through a very complex changes right now that we're we may feel like we're stuck or we're just bouncing around in this change cycle. So every time we go through a change, we experience a loss. So it's kinda like we're in shock and denial where going through anger and blame, you know, just feeling so out of controller, we wanna kinda negotiate the situation that's not in our control. So human beings are biologically, biologically programmed to survive, change. So when the systems with our mind, with our body and our mind and relationships become unstable. Our breath, our brains produce really uncomfortable signals of a threat our bodies to creates produces hormones that get our system into like fight, like freeze mode. And when, you know, when we are experienced one crisis or one change, typically, we go through this process at our own pace and we eventually get to acceptance, like we accepted change. We explore what next. We try to understand it and we integrate what happened into our daily lives so that we are then moving forward, learning to live with that change. And so we sustain ourselves that way. However, currently we're going through so many changes that just the pandemic, but we are going to the global crisis, national crisis, the organizational change. So all of these things are impacting us at one time. And so our emotions are of course, are all over the place. Some days we may be feeling like in shock again because maybe we just learned that somebody got Covid and is seriously ill. We may then the next day we may be grieving because we're thinking, well, I went on campus and it's no longer Northlake College. I see assigned as this is Northlake campus. And so I'm grieving the loss of that identity. And then other days may be celebrating the mere fact that we survived another day having gone to the grocery store wearing a mask and maybe we'd noticed somebody that wasn't. And so we're not able to really go through this process of getting to sustain the sustained over here. Because we're having so many things come at us at the same time. So well as we go through this presentation, I want you to think about your place in this and this chain cycle, and how it's impacting you, how it's impacting your well-being, your quality of life, as well as your performance.

Next slide, David. Of course, the one thing that hasn't changed is just the uncertainty of the situation that we're in. So social isolation may be part of our day, however, it may be the least of our worries as we're experiencing a lot of financial distress. Or if we're worried about losing our jobs. So this uncertainty may cause extremes in behavior from insomnia to sleeping too much, eating too much, or just a loss of appetite, excessive use of substances, hostility, aggression, poor concentration, relational problems in anxiety and depression. And of course, people with a history of trauma there being re-traumatize. The most vulnerable continue to be at really at high risk. And, you know, because of stigma just a lack of knowledge about the resources that we have, or maybe someone's in a really unsafe situation. They're not asking for help. And one of the major points that we want to get across in this presentation is that we're all experiencing some type of acute stress reaction. This is the first time that I can remember being in the same crisis as everyone else. Usually, students come to me for help. People come to me for help. They're experiencing a crisis, but I'm not experiencing the same crisis. But this time we all are seeing the same crisis. So we are all know someone that needs support. Sometimes it's ourselves, and sometimes it's a colleague. So it's really important to think about the resources that we're going to tell you about. And to think of ways that you can instill self care for yourself so that you're there for the people that you care about. Next slide. Quinessa's turn.

(Quinessa Speaks)

Even before the time of uncertainty, mental health issue has been a growing concern on most college campuses. We know that most mental health disorders emerge between the ages of late adolescents to age 25, and so I'm just going to go over a few statistics as it relates to mental health and college students. 24 percent are diagnosed or treated with anxiety problems. 20 percent are diagnosed or treated with depression. We know that the earlier treatment is received the better life outcome for our students suicide is the second leading cause of death for ages 15 to 34, which falls within that category for college students. And so the college year is the critical cons to intervene, to save lives and all filled to reduce the negative affects of mental illness.

Next slide please. So continuing on with looking at some of the statistics, the healthy minds network in collaboration with the American Health Council Association conducted a study that focused on student attitudes and concerns as it relates to Covid 19, 80% reported a negative impact or having a difficult time focusing. So my role at Cedar Valley is a little bit unique from some of my colleagues here that are presenting with me today I'm a faculty counselor so I can counseling, but I also teach courses as well. And so having struggles with focusing is probably one of the number one concern that a lot students have communicated to me. You know, it's like I'm here, I'm at home and I'd get distracted easily. You know, I used to study on campus or, you know, my family didn't really understand that just because I'm at home, you know, ask you'll have to do, you know, or a very good distracted by, you know, other things that they could be doing at home. So that's the major concern with Covid 19 60% have reported that it's more difficult to access mental health services. We had to go into this remote world for a bit. So now we are offering face-to-face counseling services.

A lot of our students are still anxious about coming on campus. So that might not be an option there from anxiety about you know receiving services through this remote world as well. So that can be a challenge for accessing mental health services. 65 percent reported on very or extremely confirmed about how long the pandemic will last so it's kind of like, you know, when it's going to go away, it's really our new normal is going to be that way forever. 64 percent reported very or extremely concerned about people that they care about contract and Covid 19. 86 percent report concerns about their personal safety and security. 66 percent report that the pandemic has resulted in more financial stress. They may have been working in industry for a job where they weren't able to transition to a remote environment at the beginning of the pandemic so, you know, they may have been furloughed or they may have lost their job or hours may have been cut, things of that nature. 59 percent report, campus administration has been supportive during the pandemic and 78 percent report that they perceive their professors is being supportive during the pandemic as well.

(Quinessa Continues)

Next slide please and Chegg.org has created this state of students theory. Again, just going to continue to highlights some of the data on how Covid is affecting students academic performance. 56 percent said that they were moderately, very or extremely worried about their mental health. And again, you know, their lives have change, you know, significantly, you know, as, you know, they may be restricted as far far as their social support, being able to hang out with their plan. You know, everything has changed and so it affects our mental health. 50 percent reported experiencing anxiety. One third reported experiencing depression. Almost a quarter said that they knew someone with suicidal thoughts since the beginning of the pandemic, 40 percent of all college and high school students report feeling anxious about returning to school. We're campus. What did that look like? You know once we return, how are we going to maintain feet of social distancing you know, how are we going to stay safe? Since the pandemic began, 55 percent report that they offered support to a friend where 49 percent have stated that a friend has reached out to them and provided support. 72 percent reported feeling helpful or supportive when a plane reaches out. 25 percent said that they did not reach out to counseling at they're cool because they felt uncomfortable doing so. It could be because again, you know, there may be some anxiety about receiving services remotely. 76 percent of students who sought counseling from their school found it extremely very or moderately helpful. About only one in four student surveyed say that they feel that they are college or school instructor take mental health seriously and just three in ten say that they feel comfortable telling their instructor if they're mental health stops them from completing their work, you know, they're afraid at that stigma is going to be attached to them. So it kinda like, you know, I want to keep that to myself. I don't want that to be a part of my academic transcript or my records.

Next slide please. With Covid 19. It has reveal some deep seeded inequities in the health care for communities of color. But typically we're going to talk about Black and Latino communities. We know that the community typically are of a lower socioeconomic status and have limited or no access to health care services. And so some research has revealed that Blacks make up 30 percent of the cases of Covid 19, Latinos make up 17percent of those cases. And these populations are at an increased risk for serious illnesses because they already process these underlying conditions such as heat decease, diabetes and things of that nature that they hadn't been able to receive adequate care for because of lack of insurance. So there's uninsured and lack of a usual source with care. So typically there is no primary care physician. You know, I don't have a doctor. Kinda like you know I take over the counter meds and things of that nature. And going to the doctor is like an end result. You know, basically. These populations typically work in service industries. And at the beginning of the pandemic, they may have had jobs that we're not able to be done remotely. So they weren't able to transition to a remote a remote way of doing their job, you know, it's kinda like, do I go to work, take the route of contracting Covid 19, you know, take the rest of not feeding my family, not having a roof over my head. So they're at a higher risk. They utilize public transportation, which again puts them at an even higher risk for exposure. And they live in multi generational families or low-income housing, which makes it very difficult to social distance, or self isolate. You know, everybody's going out and doing their thing, they're going to work, you know, and things of that nature and then they're coming back into the household. And so it's difficult for them to be able to social distance.

Next slide please. So the American Council on Education on identify some strategies that campus administrators could employ to support the well-being of students, faculty, staff, everybody on campus, you know, during this pandemic. The number one thing is ensuring that communication to students is consistent, caring and clear. You know, me as a faculty member, I I really, you know, I had the kind of bump up my communicating cause I mostly teach face to face. You know, I've taught online before, but I'm more of a face-to-face kind of person. So you know, I had think about what are the ways that I can continue to communicate. You know to make sure that they understand what's going on. Because a lot of students, you know, that I would have in class, you know, they would just kind of wait wouldn't ask any questions and I kind of read things on their face, say, Hey, do you get it, you know, helped me help me to understand and let me know if you did. So making sure that you're communicating to your students because they might be nervous about asking, you know, and things of that nature, so you want to provide a clear communication. One of the most important thing that campus administrators can do to help to support the mental health well-being of students is making sure that we're supporting the mental health and well-being of our faculty and staff. Our faculty and staff, they've been on the front line. You know, that this whole pandemic started serving students and finding innovative ways. You know that we can provide services and things of that nature. So we want to make sure, you know, that they are taken care of. So in tern, we can go back and take care of our students. What's also important. We're now Dallas College. So we consist of these multiple campuses. But even with the different campuses, the needs of our students change consistently. And the needs of students at Cedar Valley may look totally different from the needs that Brookhaven College basically. So it's important for us to make sure that we update strategic plans and that we're constantly assessing the mental health needs of our students so that we can provide those services to them. You know this is going to be like a constant thing. It continued to change over time and there is no one size fits all model, you know, so it's gonna vary, you know, from campus to campus from students to student so important for us to continue to update this strategic plan. And then we want to ensure that we're keeping equity at the forefront as well. David, next slide. Gonna talk a little bit about technology challenges.

(David Speaks)

Thanks Quinessa and maybe I should have put a trigger warning here as a name some of the new technologies that may have become a part of your life? Definitely a part of my life. But before we get into those specific occupational changes that, that definitely here at Dallas College we've gone through moving through the virtual environment. All of us may have been experiencing new virtual online technologies in a response to tryin to limit our in-person contact with things. You may have order groceries online for the first time. You may be getting food delivered. Maybe you've done that in the past, you know, a couple of times you've tried it out, but now it's become more of a regular thing that you're engaging in. Maybe you're using FaceTime in a way to connect with somebody who's maybe even just like down the street or across town. Instead of somebody who might be on the other side of the globe or the country. Maybe you've seen me and maybe we've damped together and called quarantine on Instagram as we looked for ways to entertain ourselves and new ways. Yeah, we have faced all kinds of new new challenges and new opportunities. Kind of going back to Dalia's, chance of a lifetime mantra that I think is so important in this new world. And so just recognizing that, yes, we are, we have taken on a lot in a short amount of time. Zoom published some numbers that contrasted their usage in 2019, which equal to about 10 million video meetings in all the 2019. They publish these numbers in May of 2020 and reported that from January to April of 2020, they had hosted 300 million meetings, Zoom Meetings in just those four months. So we have adapted in a rapid way to this new environment. And it's really allowed us to continue on in some amazing ways. But we're also learning about how this, this online and technology saturated experience affects us. And Stanford University's Virtual Human Interaction lab has shown that just subtle little inconsistency in audio and video matching out puts a lot of taxing stress on, on our, on our brain, on our cognitive functioning. We are wired to be able to pick up subtle signals, communicate effectively with people, kind of see how their eyes are and any increases in their, in their face that might suggest some sort of emotional context of what is being presented and that gets lost here. Or if there's a little bit of a lag.

And so this phenomenon of the zoom critique has begun to be recognized not as diagnosable condition that is on par with generalized anxiety or or, but It's something that has a similar effects to too many people who overuse video conferencing. So that can include tiredness, increased anxiety, worry, kind of irritability of being on edge because our brain has been, your brain probably today in attending a local summit is taxed at, at, after, after spending time trying to concentrate in this different environment. I went over this delay of synchrony. That's what that Stanford University lab describes. The matching up of these spatial audio gestures at the same time. And when that's just a little bit off that, that again taxes with the brain. We recognize that even though we're face to face, face to face, communication was never just about this area of our bodies. We take in so much more information on nonverbal cues. We might pick a moment to pause and look out into a thought, staring at a, at a Waller window. But here, you know, you don't know what's over there. And it distracts, kind of changes the dynamic of the communication that's happening. They've even measured that just the closeness of the face on whatever size screen you may be looking at, may create this sense of impending threat. This person who's kind of looming over me in this way, that I'm not used to, that my mind only knows how to interpret it as a threat and not just say, oh, this is based on a screen. And then just the vigilance that it takes to stay focused on a camera, stay focused on on somebody, or maybe a group of people that I'd be talking and kinda pick up, you know, who's talking and what are they saying? All these things add to this experience of this is overwhelming. This is too much on top of just learning the basics of new technologies. But, but it's not all doom and gloom, you know, and we can look at it as an opportunity to really expand our knowledge base. And this is really important that many of us thrive on technological changes and in particular, older people and older adults. And this is really significantly important because of the importance of fostering Neuroplasticity or opportunities for the brain to rewire and change and adapt and grow. That has a lot of benefits later in life. Things like increased memory retention, increased cognitive functioning, better mood have all been linked to a really robust signs of neuroplasticity in, in, in, especially in older adult population. And so we can look at, at WebEx as an opportunity to learn something new, figure something out. And really, how do I give a presentation on an online platform where I don't have that eyes can, I can look into and engage in a traditional way and see it as something that not that I have to do. And this is an important part that's get to her to have to because studies are showing studies have shown particularly this one and in 2016, that when we are in high stress, low control types of jobs, that leads to early, early and increased mortality rate. And so it's not just a stressful job or changes or things like that, but this ability to feel like you have some sort of sense of control over the situation and that is in jeopardy here.

We have been put into something that is a very unknown, very confusing, and feels out of our control it many times. So here the challenge to find those moment of what is something that I can, I can take on in a way that makes me feel like, okay, I've got this, I figured it out. This is something I get to do, an opportunity versus something that has been thrusted upon me. And I have to do. This will also apply here area of the reorg. And this is specific to Dallas College right now. And our campuses consolidate to this one organizational structure, but this is applicable to all kinds of different areas. So many different workplaces has had to adapt and change due to the pandemic. And, and we have seen the importance of work not just for keeping the economy going and the other really important aspects of working, but just recognizing that work is important, regardless, it does provide our economic, economic stability. It adds to our social life, interact with people. And this is a key environment that our social life played out him. And it adds to the sense of personal satisfaction, like I'm doing something with my life that is meaningful and has purpose gives you purpose. And so anytime there's a disruption there, even with whatever that outcome is, and we're going to be very optimistic and say, the reorganization that we're going through right now is for the better and it's gonna serve faculty, staff, students, administrators in a really good way. But regardless of that outcome, the process of going through it. Study after study after study shows that it really has a negative effect on those that are going through it at the time. Short-term. And that, that short-term negative impact. But they can lead to longer term impacts on health and well being as well. There is less to study there and that's where the specifier to look to a lesser extent, the longer-term negative impacts. It's just that there hasn't been as much research there, but the studies are showing that and increases in biomarkers that show stress. I think Kelly was talking about this earlier in recognizing that stress hormones really create a physical response in our bodies to stressful events. And those are chronic over time. Not only leads to stress and anxiety, but those levels can become depleted. Our neurological ability to continue to produce those chemicals at a sustained high level can become depleted and can even add to things like depression and change our overall health. And again, this shows that this is shown in, had declined in physical and mental health leading to increased use of sick leave by employees, poor job performance and satisfaction, overall satisfaction. And again, we're hit with two significant studies that show even mortality is, is increased risk for mortality is a part of the negative aspect of going through something like major downsizing or reorganization.

So it's significant. But again, echoing the mantra of chance of a lifetime, we can make the most of this. And there' s a British psychologist, Quarterquitz who's recent paper on this really, really challenged me and, and, and framed this aspect of what would we like to look like. And so we can look at it in a, in a, in a more traditional way. Per se, like employers and workplaces have a role to help employees manage stress. That we, as we look around to our areas of influence, you can take time to acknowledge and kind of input certain things to help regulate stress and some relaxation techniques, things like that. And this really uses this definition of resilience, the ability to continue to produce within a challenging contexts. I need to take care of my workers because we have important work to do. And you've gotta keep kind of oil in the cogs and you kind of keep it flowing well. Or, and this is the more challenging because a real rethinking of what a work and potential for her work. Work can look like. To really replace this value of kind of productivity that comes from like this industrial look of an assembly line and moving things as quickly and as efficiently as possible with a value for meaning making and seeing workplace as prime way that most of us as humans find meaning and purpose in our lives. Encouraging that in, in ways that redefine what resilience is. Resilient here is knowing when to rest and then move oneself from an adverse setting, not squeezing every last bit out over and over and over again in the most efficiently way. But leaving room or for some stores to still be left there for the person to to, to encourage slowing down reflection. And, and yeah, really encouraging autonomy, teamwork. Personalized, goal-setting, job crafting, and even being able to describe what a work role looks like. These are all aspects that can contribute to this. Slow living here is really important piece in and more and more researchers showing how a four day work week not condensed 40 hours within four days, but we'll four day work week has benefits on, on productivity and satisfaction. on job performance, all the things that you would want. But counterintuitive that stepping back, slowing down could potentially create that positive environment. And the, the goal here are the values that are, that are driving this are, are, are different than just, you know, what's that bottom line? What's the productivity instead? It can self compassion, compassion for others, care for others, also meet those goals. And particular in health care field. It's been shown that health care workers that show higher levels of compassion and slow down contemplate decisions before making them. Actually our weighted with higher levels of care for their patients. Here, that these two things could work together. Again, gets the chance to rethink and adapt in a way that maybe better than where we left off. But of course, acknowledging that this is a difficult time. And especially for employees, those of us who are going through this reorganization. You have this wonderful resource that is available through Alliance for partners. This is our employee assistance program that is accessible to all full-time employees. There's a number of benefits that are accessed through this particularly free counseling, free and confidential counseling that separate from anything through there are accessible through our employment, but it's not through your insurance or anything like that. And so free counseling all kinds of information and things that are aimed at helping you find that work life balance. And so that information is there for you and then we'll continue on what's available for students.

(Grenalda Speaks)

So mental health, mental health services via telehealth, if not something that's new, it actually began in 1959 at the Nebraska Psychiatry Institute where they did video conferencing and groups for group. But if actually new to us, we started doing the video conferencing or the mental health services via telehealth. When we receive a stay at home order as a way to continue servicing our students in providing services to help them with their mental health. The WebEx into n encryption, that is the video conferencing platform that we use to see our students. But they're also host events for students and staff. The end to end is just means that there's a conversation from one device to another. They can only be assessed, accessed by the sender and the receiver. And then HIPAA, which is the Health Insurance Portability Act that was passed in 1996 with the purpose of standardizing the exchange of electrons or the electronic data and protecting privacy. And FERPA is the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act that was passed in 1974 as a way to protect the educational and health records of students. Electronic health record is basically the digital version of the old-school pen and paper files that your doctor used to have. And the electronic health record that we use is titanium. And then informed consent is a document decline flat finds stating that they are voluntarily entering into counseling services and in a form, families, any limitations or confidentiality or any other taxes limitations. It says we continue to see students virtually and have begun recently saying them in person. They are now required to signed two informed consent. One for the virtual services and one, for the in-person services. So as you can tell, as licensed professionals, we take students rights student's confidentiality very seriously for the not only protects the student, but it also protects us as professionals.

(David Speaks)

We just started to see student services goes so academic advising. Some other student services offices are also available for any person. Sessions or counseling is part of that. And so we have adapted to create both private and confidential environment while also providing a safe, a safe experience health-wise. So students taking in-person sessions must go through a training if they have not already about how to keep safe during a pandemic. There is an app that all those who are coming on to campus completely daily and they're coming onto campus that provide the accurate record of their health. At that moment. Of course, face masks and social distancing. And that real care to the best of our ability kind of knowing that there are a few different processes. in the past the student might be able to come straight to the counseling office and we checked in. And now we have greeters on campus or checking students. And so there are a few other aspects, but overall, with the goal of protecting our students privacy and confidentiality.

So on a previous slide, I mentioned some strategy that the American Council on Education had recommended that campus administrators should employ to ensure the mental health and well-being for all and felt these are some resources that Dallas College has put into place who insured mental health well-being for our students as well as for our faculty and staff. So in our e-campus shale, you can now find a learning community is the Counseling and health and wellness warming community that provides information and resources, information about seminar sessions and things of that nature to promote mental health and wellbeing. On December third, we're going to have a virtual mental health symposium. And so it's going to focus on mental health fitness, survive and thrive. So you guys want to make sure that you register for that. Our counseling centers across our campuses are providing workshops for our students as well as faculty and staff. You know, anybody that the part of the word balance College, family where they can take advantage, you know, this resource so that they can again tools and and things of that nature to promote mental health and wellbeing. Ok to say provide resources and strategies for talking about mental health issues, whether they're yours own or whether they're someone else. And it also includes specific information for coping with Covid 19. Half of us is another resource that's available if you're feeling anxious, stressed, or you just don't feel right, you're feeling weird. You know, there are resources that are available there to help, you know, the Trevor Project, this particular resource on a specifically to the LGBTQ youth, that's available as well and the TAO Therapy assistance online. So it's an online tool with a 150 brief interactive sessions that cover topics like mental health, wellness, and substance abuse as well. That's also available and so Dalia is gonna talk to us more about TAO.

(Dalia Speaks)

Next slide please. So we're really excited about TAO. We Dallas College, launch it in August. August. And it's a great tool. It's an online till that's anonymous and people sign in and create an account. But a number of modules in there for well-being, resilience and behavioral health. So there's nine pathways in TAO so in each pathway, there's 50, there's like 55 modules per pathway. So there's a 122 sessions and these pathways go from, let go and be well calming your worry, improving your mood, interpersonal relationships, recovery skills. That's about substance abuse, pain management, leaving your blues behind, depression and very evidence-based tools in TAO. There's cognitive behavioral therapy model there the acceptance. and commitment therapy model that's used for these modules. It's very, very easy to create an account. You can find the information on how to do so on the counseling services webpage. So basically you're gonna go to US dot TAO connect.org, backsslash register. You're gonna use your name and last name, and you're gonna use your college email address, create a password, and then you're you're signed up. And like I said, it's anonymous confidential. No one can see that you are using TAO. You could even share TAO for example, you can hook up your computer to your TV's using a HDMI cable, and you can stream the information so you can share it with family. Thank you, David. Here you go Grenalda.

(Grenalda Speaks)

I'm mute..Now more than ever, it's very important to incorporate self-care and relaxation into our daily, often hectic schedules. I'm I think specifically this week with the election and the growing coronavirus numbers, it is very important and that we just take time to take a breath and just try to relax. And it's kind of funny when you think about him when we're children, we're such in such a hurry to grow up and then we become adults like I wanna slow down, I want to relax and just trying to figure out that balance. Next slide please. So what is self-care kind of include? It can include making sure that you have a good sleep routine. And they say try to get at least seven to nine hours of sleep, which may seem far away most of us but at least attempt it. Take care of yourself by taking care of your gut. Exercise daily as a part of your self-care routine, that exercise can look like a walk, yoga, cardio, dancing in your office or your bedroom, anything, that just kinda get your body moving, making sure that you're eating right. So looking at what you're eating, I know for a lot of us we've been eating a lot of junk food and just kind of whatever they are and snacking more because a lot of us are working from home. And so just kind of looking at what you're eating and making some changes. Saying no to others and saying yes to your self care. Taking a self-care trip that could be going through whatever city is next to you. That doesn't mean necessarily going out of town and maybe having dinner, just trying to get out and have some sense of normalcy. Taken a self-care break and getting outside I think is very important, especially for those people that are working at home to take a break and just go sit outside and get some fresh air. Let a pit help you with your self-care. I'm a dog mom, so having my pit has really helped me through this whole crisis. They just bringing so much joy and walking them and getting out. It is kind of forcing you to exercise. Take care of yourself by getting organized. Just kind of look at what your space looks like. Is it something that making you feel calm and peaceful or is this something that's causing you have anxiety because you have files and just things everywhere through taken a look at your space and seeing how you can make improvement. Cooking at home for self care. I think a lot of us are doing that now because we're not going out as much as we used to an eating out in public. Reading a book on self-care for self-care.

So finding what does self care really mean? What does that include? Scheduling your self care time in guarding that time, with everything you have. So once you figure out, okay, I'm gonna do this five minutes a day or ten minutes a day, making sure that you stick to that as closes as possible where becomes a habit and a routine that you take time out for yourself. So this slide, is just talking about meditation and mindfulness and the importance of learning how to recognize your breath and that just really focusing on calming your mind at this, too difficult to do. And that's too hard to start off doing. So just at first, just sitting with yourself and just kind of recognizing your breath by taking deep breaths. I talked about looking at the emotions that you're experiencing when you're just trying to be still. You can do this with your eyes opened or closed just depending with most comfortable for you. And then just making sure that you take time to do it. It can be 5- 10-minute starting out a day or every other day, whatever works for you. And you'll find that once you start doing it more, you really want to incorporate it in your daily lifestyle. Because when we do mindfulness or do meditation or just taking that time out for our fails to self-care even. We find that our mental health and physical health will improve because of a lot of stress, because we hold tension and stress in our bodies. And you'll find that once you actually tried to sit down and do breathing exercises or any type of meditation you'll be like, oh well, I'm holding stress and my shoulders or in my neck. And so it's something that I think to try. Next. So earlier Dalia talked about TAO. And it has the modules and videos that include different topics including mindfulness. So today I've chosen, one of the self-guided videos on mindful breathing for us, will it to watch, but technology. We're going to listen. And I hope that you will take these few minutes in your day, your busy day, I'm sure you've had to kind of honor yourself allowing you felt just to listen and follow along with this self-guided breathing exercise plan.

(Amanda Speaks)

Okay. Okay. I hope everybody was able to maybe relax for a few minutes. You show the last slide. So the last couple of slides are just the references and resources that we use during the presentation I'm including information about Nova, which is the crisis response team. that a lot of counselors have had training on several journals and of course TAO. Thank you everyone for attending those. Any questions? Remember to put them in the chat. We did have one question earlier. Someone wanted to know if it was at the slideshow would be shared with the participants.

(Dalia Speaks)

I think that's possible. We've shown all of the references here, so we'll be good to go to show no to share the presentation. I really want to take time to thank everybody who's listening on. Do please pick up, take this on as his chance of a lifetime to be a mental health advocate for our students and for the people that you care about. We're all experiencing this crisis together. And we have to help each other and help ourselves. So please be a part of TAO. It's not that difficult to join. And like I said, it's very confidential.

(Amanda Speaks)

Well, thank you so much for facilitating this training today. If anyone else has any questions, please do post them any currently, we did have a cost. Thank you for doing this presentation with topic with so needing to move in time. And I have to agree 2020 haven't been easy for anybody. Certainly not our students so I really do appreciate all of you who presented today for being such an active part of providing for our students and our staff and our faculty. Well, we don't have any more questions. So would you like to say anything else before we end today's session? I want to be respectful of your time.

Thank you again, everyone.