As another academic year gets underway at colleges across the country, one institution of higher learning — no doubt noticing the war zone that is academia in the year 2017 — has embraced a method of soothing stressed-out students that should have them literally begging for more.
That's right. The counseling center at the University of North Texas in Denton, Texas, is offering a trio of sessions with furry friends this semester, all geared to offer students a "safe space" where they can learn to cope.
First up is "Healing Arts with Rockstar the Dog."
This particular session meets Thursdays where students can "join Rockstar the therapy dog for some destressing art! We provide you with supplies to complete an art project designed to increase self-awareness, compassion, and gratitude. Come join us for art, or even just for cuddles with Rockstar!"
But Tuesdays are the big day for students and helpful canines.
From 2:30 to 3:30 p.m., students can gather for a session titled "Dog Breath," where they can "hug and be hugged by a poodle named Buddy! Learn skills that can be used to relieve stress and manage anxiety while spending time with a lovable pet!"
And starting in October, if they stick around for half an hour after "Dog Breath" has concluded, students can convene with therapy dogs and watch "The Office" for an hour. With the help of Dakota and Willow, students will learn "to form healthy relationships and increase coping skills!"
The idea of using therapy dogs to help college students cope isn't new — but it's become part of a growing movement at schools to identify more ways to make the college as much as a safe space as possible for students.
And of course, "cuddles" with Rockstar, Buddy, Dakota and Willow.
Here's psychologist Steffanie Grossman, coordinator of the therapy group at the University of North Texas, discussing more particulars:
(H/T: Campus Reform)