Student Counseling Services seeks to provide a safe, welcoming, and affirming environment for all students. We also seek to foster a diverse campus community of safety, inclusiveness, and respect. We therefore commit ourselves to an ongoing learning process, celebration of our differences, and a willingness to challenge ourselves and others in the pursuit of social justice.
Why is Culture Important for Mental Health Care?
Culture is a particular group's beliefs, customs, values, and way of thinking, behaving, and communicating. Cultural background affects how someone:
Views mental health conditions
Communications with health care providers (e.g. doctors, counselors)
Receives and responds to treatment
Should I Bring Up My Cultural Background in Therapy?
At Student Counseling Services, we strive to be culturally competent therapists. This entails learning about different cultures and considering the role culture plays in mental health. If this has not come up with your counselor yet, here are some ways you can start this conversation:
Do you have experience treating people from my cultural background?
Would you like to learn about my community's beliefs, values, and attitudes toward mental health?
How can we include aspects of my cultural identity (e.g. race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation) in my care?
Call to Action
Talking to a professional about the harmful effects of prejudice, discrimination, and racism can be helpful. A counselor can provide support and encouragement as well as an atmosphere of safety and trust where students can cope with difficulties. Counseling can give students an opportunity to explore their feelings about problems they may be experiencing and develop ways of coping with these difficulties.
Illinois State University is committed to creating a community free of discrimination and prejudice, and respectful of diversity. There are many web and campus resources that are available to students.