CAPS is committed to assisting every student experience a sense of safety and belongingness at The University of Georgia. We believe in the inherent worthiness of each UGA student and hope to provide students with tools to maintain emotional well-being, at all times, including times when events suggest that you may not belong or are not worthy. Events that can trigger identity related stress can vary in size and scale such as the national immigration policies and racial profiling to the daily experience of microaggressions. According to the American Psychological Association, “microaggression events refer to everyday derogations, slights, and invalidations that are often delivered to people of minority or marginalized backgrounds.” (Lui & Quizada, 2019)
We acknowledge the existence of identity related stress and the need for healthy coping strategies. This area is devoted to addressing specific identity related stress and sharing resources to increase resilience and healthy coping. When the resources provided are not enough, CAPS clinicians are available to help you develop a sense of safety and belongingness.
At CAPS, we strive to provide support for our adult students who are outside the typical college age range. We recognize that adult students might face specific challenges such as caring for family members, embarking upon a career change, and/or working a full-time job. These additional responsibilities along with academic responsibilities can lead to difficulty managing school/work/life balance. Many adult students may also experience imposter syndrome and feelings of isolation. Listed below are resources adult students might find helpful:
Division of Academic Enhancement (provides tutoring, academic coaching, and student success workshops)
CAPS is dedicated to supporting our military-affiliated students. Serving and protecting our country is a worthy and honorable endeavor and returning to civilian life of may bring a unique set of challenges. During this transition, our service members may struggle adjusting to a life that now feels mundane and foreign. On campus, these differences may be even more pronounced and contribute to feelings of isolation, inferiority (i.e., imposter syndrome), and frustration. Military-affiliated students may have difficulty connecting with other students and professors and balancing multiple responsibilities (e.g., parenting, job, reserve duties). The unique background and training of military-affiliated students may increase barriers and/or resistance to help-seeking. It is our hope that military-affiliated students feel welcomed at CAPS. We are here to support your academic and emotional well-being. Here is a list of additional resources that may prove useful:
Students who identify along the LGBTQQIA+ spectrum or who choose not to use a particular label to express sexual orientation or gender identity may face particular challenges on a university campus that are not experienced by their cisgender and heterosexual peers. These challenges may include, but are not limited to: coming out and negotiating relationships with friends, family, peers, classmates, and instructors, coping with discrimination and oppression, negotiating issues related to transition of gender identity, developing social support and a sense of community and integrating sexual orientation and gender identity into overall identity.
At CAPS we acknowledge that reaching out for support can feel intimidating. Our staff works to affirm diversity in all of its forms and create a safe and welcoming environment for all students. Additional spaces of support for LGBTQQIA+ students are:
At CAPS, we are committed to supporting students of color. We recognize that students of color may experience daily stressors that increase self-doubt and impulses to isolate oneself. These daily stressors may be exacerbated by larger, environmental concerns as well as personal challenges. When faced with these challenges, students of color may feel the need to over extend themselves or work harder to compensate for the illusion of inferiority. At these times, a sense of safety and community can be powerful tools to re-establish confidence, commitment, and engagement with the UGA community. CAPS is here to assist students with developing a sense of safety on campus. Additional spaces of support for Students of Color include:
CAPS recognizes and respects that UGA International Students are a diverse group of people traveling to UGA from all over the world with varying beliefs, customs, and languages. We recognize and respect the many talents and resources it takes to pursue an undergraduate or graduate education outside of your home country. We want you to get the most out of your education and enjoy your time at UGA. Therefore, it is important to be aware of and respond to what has been termed acculturative stress, which is stress people experience when they move from one culture to another.
It takes energy and effort to live and study in a new country that may be different in many ways from the country and culture you grew up in. Even if many of the differences you are experiencing due to studying internationally is something you wanted, it produces stress, because it requires you do something different than what is common practice – requiring you to use more energy and effort. For example, having to communicate in a second language, having different or limited access to the food you are accustom to eating, as well as having to adapt to different education practices, living situation, healthcare system, and transportation system (or difference in access to transpiration).
Also, you may find having to learn/understand different social norms practiced by your domestic student peers (e.g., Why do so many people wear workout clothes to class?) confusing and/or challenging. These are some examples of added tasks that students who study internationally often have to address that can contribute to the presence of acculturative stress. Also, students who study internationally can miss people and things from their home, which can promote stress. There can be much financial strain or pressure that comes with studying internationally, and visa status can be a common stressor. International students experience discrimination and macroaggressions (described above).
Everyone experiences stress. Some of the stress you experience may be due to factors unique to being an international student, and some of the stress you experience may be common for most university students. How you respond to stress impacts your health and your ability to do your best academic work. Research shows that developing meaningful relationships and utilizing available resources/supports help students to reduce and manage stress. Think about what contributes to stress in your life, and identify UGA resources below that might benefit you. If you are not sure what might benefit you and believe stress is impacting you, please schedule CAPS screening appointment.
Access Academic Resources:
Division of Academic Enhancement
Use Financial Resources:
Office of Student Financial Aid
Get assistance from Immigration Services:
CAPS recognizes that individuals with disabilities have many strengths including resilience, independence, and a high drive to achieve. New environments can present challenges such as adapting to unfamiliar physical spaces, increased responsibilities, and new social experiences. CAPS strives to assist these students with navigating college by providing safe and non-judgmental support and assistance. CAPS is physically accessible to all students and interpreters are available for use during counseling and psychiatric sessions. Here is a list of resources that may prove useful:
First generation college students face unique challenges on a university campus that may not be experienced by their peers. While definitions of first generation college student status vary, all reference the educational attainment of parents or guardians.
First generation college students, including those who have progressed to graduate and professional programs, may feel a sense of “otherness” or isolation, have difficulty with developing feelings of community or belonging, or experience guilt. Some may have more financial strain, work responsibilities, or family obligations as compared with their continuing generation peers. Others may question their academic preparedness or experience imposter syndrome that includes doubts about accomplishments and persistent fears of being undeserving of achievements. Still others may feel that they do not have a general understanding of the social and informational aspects of college life that contribute to college student success.
At CAPS we acknowledge that there may be times when first generation college students would like extra support but may feel intimidated or not know where to look to find resources. Our staff works to provide students with emotional support as well as identify other campus resources that may be helpful in meeting students’ needs. Many of these resources are identified on the UGA Student Affairs Student Resources website, on the UGA mobile app, and on the First Generation at UGA website.
Counseling and Psychiatric Services (CAPS) is committed to promoting inclusion. We strive to provide respectful treatment to students of every background and recognize the impact of oppression and marginalization on mental health. We value and embrace the richness inherent to the intersections of one’s race, ethnicity, nationality, heritage, gender identity and expression, sexual/romantic orientation, ability, religion/spirituality, age, socioeconomic status, body shape/size, as well as other personal and social characteristics. These intersecting factors which comprise an individual’s identity are important in guiding and enhancing the services we provide to our students. We will continue to be a safe and affirming space on campus. You are welcome here.
If you would like additional information on the support CAPS provides, you can review the CAPS Services page or contact CAPS at 706-542-2273. You can also request programming through CAPS to speak to your office, department, or organization. If you are interested in scheduling a CAPS program, please contact the CAPS Associate Director of Outreach and Collaboration by phone 706-542-2273 or complete the Program Request Form.