CAPS offers workshop to help students cope with COVID-19

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BYU Counseling and Psychological Services offers seminar for students struggling with COVID-19 stressors. (Hannah Miner)

BYU Counseling and Psychological Services is putting on a series of workshops for students who need ways to cope with the COVID-19 pandemic.

The workshops are set to cover four main topics: Stress Management in the Age of COVID, How to Maintain Social Connection Amid Social Distance, Being Resilient, and How to Handle COVID Related Conflict. 

The series will be held via Zoom with each topic being about 45 minutes. The four topics will be held three different times during the semester. For the full schedule of the coping series, students can visit the CAPS website.

BYU saw a need to find answers to COVID-19 related stress and asked the CAPS department to come up with something to help guide students struggling through this time. Klint Hobbs, CAPS assistant director over outreach, believes the need for such a workshop comes from the fact that many members of faculty, administration and staff continue to see the difficulty students face when trying to deal with COVID-19 on their own.

The coping series came to fruition under the direction of Hobbs. “We’ve noticed students having difficulty managing the stress of COVID on top of every other stressor they have. We’ve also specifically seen students struggle with appropriate social connection, and social isolation has been difficult for them,” he said.

Hobbs said it was student consultations and therapy that gave insight to struggles with social connections, isolation, disappointment, frustration and depression.

BYU psychologist Jon Cox will give the stress management section of the seminar. “Life can be stressful no matter how long a pandemic has been going. Sometimes life-changing events are even more stressful when they last a long time, so this is a good time for a stress management workshop,” he said.

Cox said he hopes students come out of this instruction with the skills and confidence to take on the various stressors in their lives. 

Law student Holly Hafford commented on why this type of workshop was needed by students today. “I think the hardest thing students are dealing with right now is the fatigue from COVID. I think that we all were able to handle it when we were under the assumption that it would be a temporary inconvenience or alteration in our normal routines.”

Hafford said she hopes she and others can exit the training with ideas on how students can feel in control of a situation they can’t change, as well as a sense of normalcy in their lives while still adhering to safety guidelines.

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