Student Wellness And Counselling Cell

The Cell consists of a team of clinical psychologists, a dedicated group of student volunteers and faculty advisors working on four primary objectives: acclimatizing the fresh students to the new environment, helping students understand their strengths and potential, encouraging them to achieve their goals, and enabling them to deal with their mental health issues, if any. The aim is to also help students who encounter difficulties with academic course work by counselling, advocacy, outreach, and consultation to promote psychological well-being and academic success.

OUR TEAM

Arya Aravind (Clinical psychologist): Smt. Arya is a licensed clinical psychologist who joined the staff of the Institute as a resident psychologist in 2017. She earned her Master of Science degree in Clinical Psychology from Annamalai University, and M.Phil in Clinical Psychology from the Amity University. She works on a variety of issues from setting healthy boundaries, anxiety, trauma, depression, effective communication and substance abuse concerns. She has worked with couples, families and individuals. To contact Smt. Arya, you can email her at arya@iitpkd.ac.in or call 9074099021.

Shri Pranavraj P (Clinical psychologist): Shri Pranavraj is a licensed Clinical Psychologist with Masters in Clinical Psychology from Annamalai University and M.Phil in Clinical Psychology from PGIBAMS, Raipur. He has 3 years of experience working with cases of depression, anxiety, stress, conflict resolution, self-esteem and boundary issues, substance abuse and psychosis. He also offered educational discussions for MD Psychiatry students. He specializes in depression, and is trained in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT). He can be contacted at 9633122269 or prj03@iitpkd.ac.in.

Mission Statement:

The mission of the Wellness Cell is to enhance student success and promote a safe and healthy academic environment by attending to the psychological, emotional, and developmental wellbeing of students. We encourage personal responsibility, respect human dignity, and value the differences among people. Counseling services will be given in a supportive and accepting environment for students of all belief systems and identities.

WHY COUNSELLING IS REQUIRED

IITs hold national importance in the Indian academic system. Congratulations on securing admission in an IIT! This is a place where you will develop your technical skills and discover and hone much of what makes you unique. You enter as an adolescent and leave as an adult. Your dreams are big and so there will likely be a lot of challenges along the way. The responsibilities are now bigger than before, which can lead to multiple concerns. Take heart in knowing that you will not be the only one facing these concerns and anxieties. There are a few issues that almost everyone of your age faces initially, like academic concerns, social (family and peer) pressure etc., leading to feelings of loneliness, low confidence, anxiety, stress, anger and sadness, to name a few.

If you then feel like talking to someone without judgement or fear, if you get into trouble of any kind and do not know who to talk to, or feel like isolating yourself from everyone, turn to us: we will be all ears! It is important to understand that these are common issues that teenage people face today. If not attended to at the right time, this could lead to poor performance in your academic and personal life.

So, we as Counsellors encourage you to approach us for any problem that you are facing- be it academic, emotional, social or financial, without any hesitation.

MYTHS AND FACTS

Myth: Psychologists and Psychiatrists are the same.

Fact: Psychiatrists are trained medical professionals and they prescribe medications. Psychologists focus on psychotherapy. They are different types of therapy.

Myth: Psychologists can read minds.

Fact: Psychologists are not mind readers! They will observe your body language. They do not have telepathic powers like Charles Xavier and Jean Grey from X-men.

Myth: Meeting a psychologist means I am mentally ill..

Fact: Many people are ashamed of taking help from a mental health professional. People feel that only mentally ill/crazy people will go for therapy. If we are concerned about our physical health then we should be concerned about our mental health too. Every one of us have certain issues in our life and need support or clarity.

Myth: If I go to a psychologist, people will be aware of my problems.

Fact: The cornerstone of a counselling session is trust and whatever information you share with a psychologist will remain confidential.

Myth: Sleeping pills are a good long-term treatment for insomnia.

Fact: no,if you are using sleeping pills for a long time then your body will get used to it and you have to take higher dose to reduce your sleeping issues. In long run if you are only depended up on medications for your sleep it will create a lot of issues.

 

COUNSELLOR RESPONSIBILITIES

Render counselling service to all the students, as and when required.

Offer Interpersonal/emotional psychotherapies.

  • Ensure comfort while working with students from a variety of social and economic backgrounds.
  •  Help students to develop interpersonal/emotional support systems.
  • Conduct workshops, talks and group discussions from time to time to help students with their academic, interpersonal and emotional needs.
  • Maintain confidentiality, but report to Director or Dean Student affairs about any extreme cases that demand Institution/family intervention.

SERVICES

Student Wellness Cell provides

1. Individual Counselling

Most of the time, you may feel that it will be possible for you to manage with difficult times, especially if you have good support from family and friends. However sometimes things don’t get better and if you feel so low, stressed, worried or angry that it is having a big impact on your life, you might need some extra help to get back on track.

All of the services at our Wellness Cell are confidential. We understand that opening up to someone for the first time can be extremely difficult, and for some young people, taking the first step can take time. Talking to a Counsellor can help you to understand the things that are affecting you, and together, we can find positive coping strategies that work for you.

The kinds of things we can support you with:

  • Challenges surrounding transition and change
  • Home sickness
  • Uncertainty about values and goals
  • Academic pressure
  • Dealing with new academic patterns
  • Personal relationships with a special one and with friends
  • Family concerns
  • Issues of grief and loss
  • Stress, depression and anxiety
  • Lack of motivation; concentration difficulties
  • Aggression
  • Suicide Ideations
  • Social Isolation
  • Sexual Orientaion
  • Sexual disorders
  • Addiction
  • Personality Development
  • Lack of Motivation
  • Sleep Issues
  • Obsessive thoughts and compulsive behaviour.

2. Group Sessions

We offer a variety of group services, including therapy groups and support groups. A support group is an informal space that can be utilized to learn health and wellness strategies, practise social skills, meet other students and thus help you adjust to life situations.

If you would benefit from a more formal group, a therapy group may be a better choice. A therapy group offers you the opportunity to process at a deeper level, encourages participation and will allow you to engage with others on different emotional levels.

3. Psychological Assessment

In some cases where more precise diagnoses are required, we conduct psychological assessments. These tests help all those who are concerned with the student’s wellbeing to decide upon the best possible intervention.

4. Skills Workshops

Our skills workshop are psycho-educational workshops designed to help build personal awareness, develop coping skills and promote self-care. The main goal of our skills workshops are to give you tools to recognize your concerns and develop a clearer idea of what you want to change in your life. Once you have developed your roadmap to change, you will have a better idea of where you need to go.

5. Online Scheduling

This way you can select the counselor and the appointment time that works best with your busy schedule. Your session is provided on the electronic device you choose, in the location of your choice.

Workshops and Events

We also organizes workshops and events during each academic year. The workshops and events are organized on different topics related to mental health, positive psychology and health psychology. It is also based on the need of the students, like dealing with stress, time management, relationship issues etc.

At the beginning of each academic year we hold an orientation programme for the 1st year students.

The team also organizes various events on occasions like Mental Health Day, International Happiness Day, No Drugs Day and World Suicide Prevention Day.

Workshop on “Healthy Internet Use”

We conducted a workshop on healthy internet use. Internet plays a vital role in our lives. It has significantly transformed our style of living and working. Like everything, the internet has positive as well as negative effects. The workshop was conducted to create awareness among students of the pros and cons of the internet and to impart tips for healthy internet usage.

Speakers: Arya Aravind and Ashfak Ahmmed

Date: 30th January

Venue: Auditorium, IIT Temp. Campus

Workshop on “Relationships”

A workshop was conducted on ‘Relationships’. In recent years, it has become increasingly common for people to connect with each other mainly through social media networks. This has often resulted in less prioritization of in-person, direct communication. The workshop was conducted to hone students’ understanding of how to maintain healthy relationships in the campus. Focus was placed on friendship and romantic relationships.

Speakers: Arya Aravind and Ashfak Ahmmed

Date: 13th March

Venue: Auditorium, IIT Temp. Campus

FAQs

What is counselling?

Counselling is not giving advice to someone. We believe it will not work through that mechanism if you want bring about changes in some one’s thought processes/behaviour.

Going for a counselling session in no way indicates that you are helpless or incapable of solving your own problems. By talking about your problems or concerns with a counsellor, you will deepen your understanding of your problem and develop the means to deal with them.

What kind of problems can I talk to a counsellor about?

You can come to us for personal problems, academic problems, emotional issues and career awareness. These may include stress related problems, exam anxiety, personal problems, peer pressure, substance abuse, lack of focus in academics, laziness, time management, inability to concentrate and career related queries.

Can a psychologist talk to me and understand me without judgements?

Yes. Psychologists are trained in their profession and they will talk to you without any judgements and what ver you discuss with them remains confidential. They are there to understand you.

How do I present my issues?

It doesn't really matter how you present your problem. Sometimes there is silence, sometimes you might find yourself saying things you had not expected to say. The counsellor will help you explore the matter and will keep referring to you to clarify his/her understanding.

What will the counsellor think of me - will they think badly about me?

First of all, we are not here to judge your actions. And secondly, many of our problems arise just because we are human. We all make mistakes and have to learn from them, and it is normal to learn and relearn from our experiences before we get something right. When something goes wrong, it is usually because you are pushing yourselves too hard; because you are in a muddle for reasons you don't fully understand or because you are actually suffering some form of mental distress which is distorting your view of reality. Therefore judging is not helpful or relevant; what we will do is listen to you and support you along your way in finding the best way out of the problem.

What if I still feel ashamed of my problems?

Counsellors do accept that it is natural to want to appear successful and that most of us feel some shame when we have problems and so don't want to advertise our difficulties. This is one of the reasons we place a great emphasis on confidentiality.

Can psychologists help me to improve my communication skills with teachers and friends?

Yes, a psychologist can help you to improve your communication skills. All kind of relationships are based on communication. Lack of communication creates a lot of misunderstandings and people may drift apart. A psychologist can help you to better understand your thought process related to communicating with people, suggest effective ways to improve your interpersonal skills and enable you to confidently practise such skills in your everyday life...

How confidential is counselling?

Strict confidentiality is ensured in the Counselling Service.

If I have had counselling, does it go on my record?

If a student approaches Counselling Service, nothing about it will go on his/her record.

Can I seek advice regarding a friend or colleague?

If you want to approach us regarding a friend, you are most welcome. We'll try our best to help you help your friend, while still helping you to stay anonynomous.

Can a psychologist help me to reduce my game addiction?

A psychologist can help you to reduce your game addiction. Playing the occasional video game for fun is typically harmless but when you find yourself playing video games for most or all of your time and are unable to focus on academic or personal responsibilities, a psychologist can help you take back control of your life..