BetterMynd, an online counseling service tailored for college students, has added Florida A&M University to its clientele as it offers 24/7 therapy, workshops and a crisis hotline for students in dire need of mental health aid.
BetterMynd is partnered with 50 other universities nationwide to serve over half a million students who are in need of mental health aid, a demand that has “skyrocketed.”
According to the BetterMynd website, “The number of students seeking mental health counseling has increased more than 60% since 2020.”
In the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic, along with physical health, mental health was at the forefront as college students struggled with maintaining balance outside of the lockdown, experiencing loneliness by being sent home from their campuses, and trying to obtain their degrees while keeping a social life.
With these factors in mind the desire for mental health aid, resources and guidance have increased as the stigmatism behind therapy and counseling have decreased significantly as most faced this struggle.
The increased desire for mental health aid has become a battle the Florida A&M Office of Counseling Services has struggled with, according to the office’s director, Anika Fields.
“This is the time of the year, it is always right before midterms through the end of the semester that we get filled up,” Fields said in an interview with The Famuan. “… students are having to wait. We don’t want them to wait and they don’t like to have to wait.”
Fields said she sympathizes with the students who are in search of help, a struggle over 50% of students face due to a lack of resources, financial hardships and long wait times, according to the BetterMynd site.
With only five in-person therapists, coaches and counselors in the Florida A&M counseling office, students have had to wait for services despite their timely need for help.
Now, because of the collaboration with BetterMynd, students are provided with 78 certified therapists who they can choose from, all from diverse backgrounds, so students can find the right fit for them.
The new collaboration has already gained positive responses with ending surveys indicating that the sessions were “reassuring” and made them “feel comfortable.” The service has even caused more students to actually register for therapy with the help of the new partnership.
In the first two weeks of the collaboration, 91 FAMU students have registered for services, 25 have upcoming scheduled appointments, and 35 students have already had appointments.