WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 21, 2011
THE BUTLER COLLEGIAN | PAGE 11
Save money and sanity with counseling More of Butler’s community should use the free counseling service—the single best deal on campus.
he vast majority of mental disorders are treatable, or at the very least can be made more manageable with professional advice and support. So Butler University’s community needs to take advantage of the amazing service that is provided for them. Only 36 percent of those with mental disorders receive counseling, reports the National Institute of Mental Health.
Among Butler students, that number drops to 8 percent— whether they have disorders or not. The American Counseling Association estimates that the average counseling session costs each patient $65. The ACA does not release data on the number of sessions that patients undergo, because every case is different. But for the purpose of this article, assume that the average number of visits is relatively low and that all issues are resolved with 10 weeks. Hypothetically, Butler’s free counseling program would save each patient $650. 26.2
percent of American adults suffer from some form of mental disorders on a yearly basis, the NIMH reports; over a lifetime, that increases to 46.4 percent. A “mental disorder” is a relatively broad term, but all of them affect the lives of their victims—and they are real. If the ratio holds true for this campus, then there are roughly 1300 people associated with the campus who have mental disorders and they’d end up spending a combined $845,000 on therapy. In other words, the counseling services are an immensely good bargain for the members of the community. For whatever it’s worth, I am a satisﬁed “customer” of the counseling service on campus. Two years ago, I would never have put my thoughts on display before the whole of the university—just inﬂicted them on my friends. So you have them to thank for this piece. It’s also worth mentioning that counseling can beneﬁt everyone, not just those with recognized mental disorders. And, again,
it’s free. The only investment you make is with time. If it’s not a beneﬁt, stop going. But in the meantime, you could make some amazing selfdiscoveries, overcome boundaries you weren’t aware of and just generally improve your selfimage. That sounds like something that should be worth more than $65 a week, and it’s priced even lower: free. That fact can’t be repeated enough. Sixty-four percent of Americans with disorders don’t use counseling services; 92 percent of Bulldogs don’t either. In 2011, a lot of people still think that they’re just being whiny, that they can “tough it out” and that nothing is really wrong with them. Chances are that any given adult doesn’t have a disorder. Almost everyone vents to his or her friends and family, and that’s healthy. Giving voice to thoughts and emotions helps humans deal with them maturely and rationally. Venting to a counselor has two major beneﬁts: it’s absolutely conﬁdential, and they’re a captive audience. The counseling staff gets paid to listen to you. They’ve been trained to offer professional advice. They also got involved in counseling because they sincerely care about people, and because they’re good listeners to boot. Did I mention its free?
Contact asst. opinion editor Jeremy Algate at firstname.lastname@example.org.
42.6 percent of Americans over the age of 18 suffer from a mental disorder sometime during their lifetime 64 percent of Americans with mental disorders don’t receive counseling 8 percent of students, faculty and staff use the on-campus counseling service $65: the average price of one session with a counselor $0: the cost of every visit to the HRC counseling center
For Butler’s future, throw away the lists U .S. News & World Report has once again ranked Butler University No. 2 among Midwest regional universities. It’s a great accomplishment for a great school. These rankings continue to become more inﬂuential to students and parents trying to make a decision about their education. But students should keep in mind that one list does not deﬁne a university. Students should use these rankings to decide which universities to apply to. But they should not use them to decide which university to attend. Likewise, administrators shouldn’t make policy decisions solely to increase the school’s rank. Fortunately, our new president agrees. In an interview with Collegian staff writer Kyler Naylor, President Jim Danko said, “No ranking is a perfect indicator of the strengths or even the weaknesses of a university. So we certainly want to celebrate when we do well because there is some indication, all be it not perfect, of your university. But one thing I’ve always been very cautious about is building a university premised on rankings.” Ranking indicators change every year, and if Butler makes changes based on a moving target, we easily could miss.
Ranking indicators change every year, and if Butler makes changes based on a moving target, we easily could miss.
Photo by Maria Porter
The class of 2003’s limestone book podium stands in front of a fountain on campus. U.S. News & World Report once again ranked Butler University No. 2 among Midwest regional universities.
Furthermore, rankings cannot quantify how well an individual student will ﬁt into a particular program or college. That ﬁt, more than any other factor, should help deﬁne a student’s choice. No matter how hard they try, one set of criteria cannot analyze the qualities of all faculty on a campus. It’s impossible to know what it feels like to throw a ball around the mall
on a cool September afternoon. And forget about measuring the feeling on campus when a basketball team goes to back-to-back Final Fours. U.S. News & World Report uses a broad array of criteria to measure their schools. And they should be used to determine, generally, which schools are better than others. But that’s not really what rankings are for anymore. They’re for marketing purposes. They’re for the ubiquitous pamphlets found in admissions ofﬁces across the country. They’re
for university web pages, press releases and presidents’ speeches. The rankings do not take into account the success of a university’s alumni. The rankings do not measure the value of the research coming out of a university’s faculty and PhD programs. Neither do they measure students’ community service, nor universities’ social mobility—the recruitment and graduating of lowincome students. Instead the rankings measure how similar a university is to
Harvard, Yale and Princeton. But Butler is not, nor will it ever be, an Ivy League university. And that is absolutely ﬁne. Change is good. But we don’t want to change for change’s sake or just to move up a rank. Butler should be known for how Bulldogs are helping to shape the future of our state and our nation; how four years of living the Butler Way can change lives. Contact asst. opinion editor James Hanna at email@example.com.
Angry we missed the scoop? Have an opinion of your own? Send letters to the editor to firstname.lastname@example.org. We’d love to print your rants and raves. Keep it classy and see page 10 for guidelines.
PawPrints By Rachel Anderson
“Lucas Oil Stadium during the Super Bowl because I love football, and it’s a beautiful stadium.” Laura Anderson Freshman
If you could take a bus to anywhere in Indiana for free, where would it be and why? “South Bend. That is where my second cousin lives, and he’s the coolest person in the world.” Ian Smith Sophomore
“The border...to get out of the state. Any of them.”
“Indiana Dunes because I think it would be the prettiest place in the state.”
Brandon Reisdorf Senior
Becky Howarth Graduate Student
9.21.11 ISSUE PDF