University offers affected students support services

While attention has greatly focused on the material needs of those affected by the Nov. 17 tornadoes, Bradley is offering students support in more personal ways as well.

Student Support Services and Student Counseling Services are two campus resources that affected students are encouraged to connect with to cope with the academic-related and mental issues following Sunday’s storms.

Student Support Services Director Anne Hollis said that as she learns of local students who were affected, many of whom are commuters, Student Support Services works to communicate their situation to faculty and staff.

“We relay the message that a student has been directly impacted by the tornadoes, and this may affect the student’s attendance and performance,” Hollis said. “The response I have seen from faculty has been very understanding and supportive of the situations.”

Hollis said she has been contacted by several students, most requesting assistance for informing their instructors of their absence. Some other students have been provided temporary on-campus housing after reaching out to Student Support Services.

Aside from meeting the academic and residential needs of students, Bradley also offers services to help students mentally cope with the loss, according to Health Services Director of Counseling Deborah Montgomery-Coon.

“Students may contact Health Services to request a counseling appointment. We also make every effort to have students who are in a mental emergency seen as soon as possible,” Montgomery-Coon said.

While no one has identified the tornado as the reason they are currently seeking service, Montgomery-Coon said her staff is aware of the potential need.

Student Counseling Services provided 10 tips for coping with disaster: gather reliable information, limit news intake, be patient, try to connect, engage in self-care, accept practical support, accept emotional support, pitch in, remember resiliency and seek out professional support.

Both Hollis and Montgomery-Coon said they recognize the needs for support from Bradley and will be available for affected students.

“We understand the students impacted will need support in the coming days, weeks and months, and we’re here to serve as a resource to help students succeed,” Hollis said.