Campus students weigh in on Mental Health Awareness Month


Photo Courtesy of The Chaparral. Top Row from left to right: Chris Khoury, Kiana Noriega and Devin Shaw. Middle Row from left to right: Justice Patterson-Finnell, Edward Robles and Arianna Fernandez. Bottom Row from left to right: Travis Fisher and Odilia Vidal.

The month of May observes Mental Health Awareness, a collective stand to “recognize that mental health is an essential component to one’s overall health and wellbeing, and those mental illnesses are common and treatable,” as described by Fenway Health. For the last time during this school year, our reporters asked students around campus to provide their thoughts, personal suggestions, what could possibly trigger them away from a healthy mindset and how they would seek guidance to bounce back.

Edward Robles – Business “If you can, take some time throughout the day to go for a walk. I know that it is very hot, so it might be difficult out here, but that’s always good. Get on your feet, be in the sun, and take care of your internal thoughts.”

Odilia Vidalla – Health Science + Nursing “Don’t be stressed about asking for help from College of the Desert. I have received a lot of help from the school, and I have felt comfortable within the environment.”

Devin Shaw – Computer Science “Turn your phone off and stop looking on social media; you’d be better off. I don’t have anything on my phone, so it’s all I do, and I’m okay.”

Justice Patterson-Finnell – Environmental Science “I prefer reaching out to people who I can trust most, and talking about it always helps. It can also make you feel better.

Kiana Noriega – Kinesiology “I am a very outgoing person, so I like going out and doing activities with friends, so with that [COVID-19] happening, I couldn’t do very much. COVID definitely affected my mental health as I’m better connected in person than online.”

Travis Fisher – Geological Engineering “I would say to stay calm and to keep working on it and to find somewhere you’d feel confident in. Stay humble and use that to help you keep going without feeling overwhelmed.”

Chris Khoury – Business “In generalization, parental divorce would probably impact my mental health. For those going through their parents’ divorce, I would say to take the time to realize that it is not your fault.”

Arianna Fernandez – Digital Design and Production “Every mind is different, and with every personality, it’s a unique blend of possibilities. After years of living with stressors, having someone I loved die, or someone I trusted betray me, I would need to take some time alone and gather my thoughts so I may feel stable enough to talk about the occurrence with someone I trust. If I ever had an encounter with someone from my past who hurt me, I would need to seek therapy in order to feel safe again.”

If you are struggling with your mental health, we encourage you to speak to someone you can trust, whether that may be a parent, friend, or therapist. College of the Desert also provides mental health services, and you can call them at 760-776-7211, book an appointment online, or visit on-site at the Cravens Student Center located on the first floor.