by: Cassidy Camille
photo credit: Vivian Truong
The Student Outreach and Retention Center (SOAR) hosted their second Puppies and Pathfinders event to help students learn healthy coping skills for stress in the Cross Cultural Center on Thursday, Dec. 5. During the event featuring therapy dogs, students were also able to de-stress by interacting with peer educators, using DIY stress balls and participating in an essential oil workshop.
The event brought together SOAR and the Center for Student Wellness and Health Promotion as well as student organizations such as Active Minds at UCI and SKY Meditation at UCI. Together, these organizations wanted to express their care for students by providing them with options for self-care.
The Pathfinder Program was created by students to help counsel their peer students on handling their college struggles.
“We wanted to put on an event like this one to allow students to reach out and learn to manage their stress,” fourth year and SOAR Pathfinder Program Coordinator Jordan Nakanishi said.
According to the Pathfinder Program’s website, the program uses peer-to-peer consultation for students’ holistic wellness as well as directing students to campus resources useful for their difficulties.
“With this event, we wanted to provide a more hands on interaction,” Nakanishi stated.
The activities during the event allowed students to interact and engage in their own well-being by teaching them how to develop their own unique ways to cope with stress.
According to the SOAR website, their mission is to “create an unbiased, open campus that will further enhance the college experience.” In doing so, one of their core values is to nurture student wellness. Their mission focuses on providing the stability needed to create an equal educational environment. With these skills, students will independently be able to create their own programs on campus.
Future SOAR events and more information about their mission can be found on their website.