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Campus Life & Inclusive Excellence

Health & Counseling Center

For Students

Group Counseling and Workshops

group therapy picture

WHAT GROUPS AND WORKSHOPS WILL BE OFFERED DURING THE Summer 2019 Session?

Group offerings tend to be sparse during the summer given the fewer number of students on campus. This summer we will be offering:

  • Self-Compassion Workshop (On Thursdays, lasting 4 weeks - 6/20, 6/27, 7/11, & 7/18)
  • Potentially Student of Color Group (TBD)

Please see the Spring 2019 Brochure for descriptions of these groups. Our full offering of groups will return in the fall.

Feel free to contact Dr. Anand Desai  (group counseling coordinator) with any group related questions or to be placed in this workshop!

What is Group Counseling?

Group counseling is a highly effective means of addressing personal concerns - in fact it has been proven to be equally as effective as individual therapy, and in some cases more effective.  Some groups that are often offered are focused on a particular subject or skill while others are more general in nature. The more general groups (named "understanding self and others") in nature are particularly beneficial if you:

  • Are concerned about how you relate to other people
  • Feel isolated, depressed or anxious
  • Experience discomfort in social situations/have difficulty providing/receiving empathy and care to/from others
  • Lack intimacy in relationships
  • Have family of origin difficulties
  • Are dissatisfied with your friendships or romantic relationships
  • Struggle with low self-esteem and/or low self-confidence

Watch this brief video to learn more about group, how it can help, group myths demystified and more:

 

 

WHY DOES GROUP COUNSELING WORK?

Group members and counselors can:

  • Help you obtain support
  • Help you receive immediate, genuine feedback allowing an increase in your awareness of yourself and identification of aspects of your life you want to change.
  • Help you see that you are not alone in your problems
  • Help you resolve your difficulties, learn alternative ways of responding, and develop new ways of relating to others

 

What does a typical group session look like?

  • A group typically consists of 5 to 8 people who meet face to face with 1 or 2 group counselors to discuss their concerns.
  • Group sessions are confidential: what is discussed in group may not be disclosed or discussed outside the group.
  • Many groups last 8-10 weeks while others continue from one quarter to the next.
  • You can participate in as many groups as you would like, there are no limits to group counseling.

Groups vary in session format.

  • Understanding Self and Others
    • No specific topic for each group session
    • As a group member, you bring any issues to the group you feel are important
    • The primary focus of therapy in the group is on the interactions among you and other group members
      • This is done through disclosure (sharing about oneself) and feedback (giving/getting information about oneself) in order to learn about how we relate to one another and how to feel more connected
  • Support/Theme groups
    • Mix of structured/unstructured activities
    • Providing and receiving support from others around a specific shared issue/common experience
  • Structured skills workshops
    • Focused on a particular topic
    • Sessions may consist of brief lectures by the group leaders, group discussions, and experiential activities

Do I have to reveal all my deepest secrets and feelings to the group?

  • No. You alone decide how much you want to share.
  • Most group members tend to share more about themselves when they feel safe in the group.
  • Members often report getting more out of group when they decide to share more about themselves.

What role do the group leaders play?

Group leaders:

  • Help create and maintain safety in the group
  • Guide and facilitate self-exploration
  • Give feedback and support
  • Provide comments on interpersonal issues in the group
  • Encourage group cohesion

Some leaders take an active role throughout the duration of the group while others tend to give group members more responsibility for self-exploration.

In structured groups, group leaders take a more active role than in the "understanding self and others" group by providing instruction on specific topics related to the group theme.