April 21, 2020
It is an uncertain time in the world. As classes go virtual and social distancing rules stay in place, students can be under a lot of stress.
In order to help Sun Devils stay connected to peers and enjoy friendly and supportive conversations during this time, the ASU Devils 4 Devils student organization, in collaboration with ASU Counseling Services, has launched virtual Devils 4 Devils Support Circles.
The support circles are student-led Zoom meetings where any Sun Devil can connect with a caring peer to express their feelings and concerns. Devils 4 Devils is a student-led organization offering peer-to-peer social and emotional well-being programming for ASU students, with guidance from ASU Counseling Services. This semester, the organization launched new virtual engagement opportunities to continue to support students through the COVID-19 pandemic.
Students involved in Devils 4 Devils receive training, tips and resources to help raise awareness about mental health, how to be a more supportive friend and work to create an emotionally healthy community at ASU.
Student facilitators lead the daily sessions and discuss different topics. The support circles also aim to provide all students who participate with information on how to access therapeutic services and support through ASU Counseling Services.
Nithara Murthy, 19, a sophomore majoring in global health, is one of the student facilitators who is leading the Zoom sessions.
“These support circles are meant to encourage connections and empathy during this time. They are meant to be fun and fill the lack of person-to-person interactions that students may be having,” Murthy said.
Each support circle is centered around a specific topic, such as in-home workouts and book and movie recommendations.
Murthy is offering a “cook with me” session where she will share a recipe with students and they can follow along with her.
Support circle gatherings are offered in morning and afternoon sessions Monday through Friday.
Murthy noted that students might be struggling with their mental health during this time — explaining that sometimes all they need is to talk with someone who understands them.
“I think it is easier to open up to someone your own age and connect with them,” Murthy said.
Now more than ever, Sun Devils need the support of their peers to navigate through this new way of life.
“We want someone watching these circles to feel connected to another student, to feel less isolated,” Murthy said.
To learn more about the support circles or Devils 4 Devils training, visit the Devils 4 Devils website.