Wellness Center checks student mood with depression screening

Walking up to the depression screening booth, students were surrounded with everything from mood rings to time slots with counselors.

“We just simply want people to know were here and here to help,” said Laurie S. Floren, Senior Clinician at the Wellness Center.

On Nov. 12 and Nov. 13, Floren did exactly that. She and her co-workers created an engaging way for students to participate in the depression screening held in the living room of Nicholson Commons.

From 12:00 p.m.-2:00 p.m., students chose a mood that they identified most with and were then able to glue it on a poster called “Peace of Mind.”

“I chose happy three times, but I still wanted to take the test to see what would happen,” said Scott Stuetzel, a freshman and business major at PLNU.

Next, students took a brief questionnaire that consisted of four categories that tested their levels for: depression, mood, trauma and anxiety, and were then directed to counselors who read them their results.

“My levels were a bit higher than I expected. I didn’t know how much anxiety I had,” said Joshua Adams, a freshman and broadcast journalism major at PLNU.

After being read the results, students were then given the option to come in for counseling. The counseling session would discuss students’ results and give them a chance to enter a contest for mood rings.

“We keep no actual record of people who come in to the screening or statistics of depressed students at PLNU, but I would say approximately 70 people came in total to this event we held,” said Floren.

National depression screening day takes place every year on Oct. 9, but Floren says, “We do it later to give students time to settle into college.”

Stuezel said even though it’s later in the year, this issue is still important to college life.

“I feel as though depression is relevant in the college-aged crowd because many are experiencing real life for the first time,” said Stuetzel.

If anyone has any problems with depression, anxiety, trauma or their mood, Floren encourages students to come into her office, which is located in the Wellness Center.

“A lot of people are depressed and don’t even realize it,” said Floren.

The Wellness Center continued to spread awareness Nov. 17 in front of Brown Chapel where they will be raffling off mood rings and giving students another chance to see what the depression screening is all about.