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Three flags mark the entrance to Jarvis Christian College.

Jarvis Christian College (JCC) has partnered with META, a national digital mental health platform for schools, to provide online counseling and mental health services for their students.

The partnership with META was made possible through a grant managed by the Thurgood Marshall College Fund, a nonprofit dedicated to representing Historically Black Colleges and Universities.

Students download the META app, choose a counselor, and receive chat, video or voice counseling through the privacy and convenience of their smartphones. Students see on the app if counselors are available online for immediate connection, or students can leave a chat message to schedule a future session.

“Mental health care has never been more important for our students than it is right now,” said Dr. Lester Newman, president of Jarvis Christian College. “By partnering with META, we instantly remove many barriers to care that could prevent a student from receiving the therapy they need. META addresses stigmas surrounding mental health assistance, and allows students to connect with providers in an easy, private and safe manner.”

On META’s platform, Jarvis students can access more than 300 licensed and vetted providers. A limited number of free sessions are available, or students may elect to work with a provider who accepts their insurance.

Mental health issues among college populations are a growing concern, especially since the onset of the coronavirus pandemic. A recent survey conducted by META found that 84 percent of college students are struggling with stress and anxiety caused by COVID-19. Social distancing requirements have made teletherapy a necessity for staff and students to protect themselves.

JCC says by partnering with META, the college receives a robust mental health program that provides self-service content directed at students, and an ongoing awareness campaign that promotes students to take care of their emotional and mental well-being.

Digital Multimedia Journalist

Ben Fenton is a digital multimedia journalist that has worked at the Tyler Morning Telegraph since 2019. He is from Lindale, Texas and holds a Bachelors in Digital Media and a Masters in Communication.

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