By Christina Armeni
Where can University of Maryland students get a massage, pet dogs, win prizes and receive acupuncture? The second annual Terps Take Care Fair took place October 3rd surrounded by the most perfect sunny weather. Students gathered in Hornbake Plaza to visit more than two dozen stands set up by clubs and organizations promoting mental health. To name a few: Massage Envy, CARE to Stop Violence, Meditation Club and the Counseling Center all made appearances at the interactive self-help event arranged by the University Department of Residential Life. The fair intends to educate students on the campus mental health resources available as well as teach the ways students can improve their self-care.
People Animals Love (PAL), a nonprofit organization located in DC, brought adorable dogs to the fair that students couldn’t help but stop and pet. The pups and their owners spread all around the plaza so students and teachers could take a minute to play with the dogs no matter which direction they were headed. A volunteer with the organization brought her dog Devota, saying that based on her experience the students “really appreciate the happiness they get from the dogs.
Aside from petting dogs, students could share their story on Post-it notes or enter to win free yoga classes at Numi Yoga or even make a sand stress ball with the Student Health Advisory Committee. It is clear the University of Maryland is putting forth an effort to look after the mental health of its students.
Desiree Liang, a senior at the university was taking advantage of the opportunities at the fair before her next class. Liang said that the fair “is very important to know how to handle any mental health crises or just in general how to protect yourself and live a fulfilling life.” The open and inviting nature of the fair provides, as Liang put it, a “more easy going” environment that benefits those students who are hesitant to get help.
Featured Photo Credit: Courtesy of Christina Armeni.
Christina Armeni is a freshman journalism major and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.