Mental health awareness


An illustration descripting the feeling of being mentally overloaded. ​​

Trinity Turner, Copy Editor

What is mental health? Counselor for Accommodations and Mental Health Initiatives, Amber Niebrugg describes it as, “Mental health is health, so it shouldn’t be looked at differently. It’s something we should be aware of. What are we thinking? What are we feeling? Are we taking care of ourselves? Just being able to check in with ourselves.” 


Niebrugg explained mental health, like being treated for diabetes. Mental Health is not something that can just be overlooked. She mentioned that college students have a lot to balance, which directly correlates with one’s mental health. Students are not just students; they juggle the same things as adults. Students work and go to school, and sometimes, focusing on their coursework gets overshadowed. Overshadowing coursework can lead to a student getting behind, which creates more stress.


However, mental health is not just seen in our students, nor is talking about it the only issue. Nieburgg feels our area is hurting as “Not having enough mental health care open to students is affecting everyone. Wait times for counseling in our area are absurd. It is not uncommon to have a six-month wait list for some counselors.”


These wait lists are crazy, but Lake Land college students can meet with Niebrugg if they need help right away or a counselor. However, they are not able to see students long-term so she will often suggest ‘Better Minds’. ‘Better Minds’ gives students eight virtual therapist appointments with a licensed counselor. They can do it straight from home. Nieburgg wants students to know that “When students log in, they submit a request, not an appointment, but it is always licensed counselors. Also, if students don’t have a confidential place, she will find them one.”


Another thing accessible to students is the ‘Calm’ app, which is used for mindfulness, meditation, and sleep music. This is a free app accessible through Lake Land College’s canvas that allows students just to unwind. 


The Active Mind group is the last thing Niebrugg mentions about what LLC offers. The Active Mind is a national club whose sole purpose is to help spread awareness and explain mental health. They also have little cards with questions that students can ask themselves daily.  


Mental Health is and can be affected every day. Being aware of what mental health is and that sometimes people can struggle is essential. When asked how to be a supportive friend to someone struggling with mental health issues, Nieburgg says, “always call them to talk and to know you will be there to listen.”

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