PSP helps students stay relaxed

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November 13, 2010

10:41 AM

Relaxation, learning, fitness and service are goals often requiring days of commitment, but this Saturday CenteredTribe will try to integrate them all into four hours.

The honor fraternity Phi Sigma Pi will host CenteredTribe this Saturday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the Campus Center. For a two dollar entry fee, the program offers hours of classes, food, raffles and information about wellness. The event’s proceeds will benefit Teach for America, PSP’s philanthropy.

As PSP’s first campus-wide philanthropy event, CenteredTribe will focus on the well-being of students, especially during one of the most stressful times of the year.

“When we were planning the event, we realized that we have fun sports and we have other fun philanthropies on campus,” Chelsea Bracci ’13 said. “So we thought to do something that the campus really needs right now.”

CenteredTribe stems from Bracci’s work with centeredbeing, a wellness education and health promotion company based in Alexandria, Va. Centeredbeing teaches students a preventative approach to overall wellness through relaxation methods, yoga and pilates. As director of outreach for centeredbeing, Bracci worked closely with the company to bring the program to the College of William and Mary.

“Centeredbeing approaches [relaxation] from the perspective that instead of bringing the horse to the water, they’re literally bringing the water to the horse,” Bracci said. “They try to focus on the hours when you’re not on a yoga mat. This event is a bunch of classes that gives students the tools to go off and do it on their own.”

Ranging from hip-hop lessons with Pointe Blank to “How to Fall Asleep in Five Minutes,” CenteredTribe’s classes cover all forms of relaxation and wellness. One of the classes, centeredSWEMing, focuses on teaching students how to de-stress in public places.

“[The classes will cover] how to relax in Swem without looking like an idiot,” Bracci said. “It’s completely chair-based relaxation. Here’s half an hour worth of material that you can take bits and pieces of to be able to relax right there in your study room.”

In addition to classes, CenteredTribe will feature booths with information from various organizations around campus such as H.O.P.E, C.A.R.E., Color Me Stress Free and the Counseling Center. Every group offers a different insight into the wellness of students on campus and shares ways to maintain a good sense of balance in everyday life.

While the Counseling Center has a significant role in the event, counseling students is not the focus for CenteredTribe. The Counseling Center will hold four sessions during the event, with its main goal being to increase students’ knowledge of overall wellness.

“Students can experience stress as a result of unhealthy relationships, poor self care, and unrealistic expectations about what can be accomplished in a given time period,” director of outreach for the Counseling Center Dr. Patrick Hudgins said. “Discussions and presentations centered on healthy coping strategies to reduce stress can in turn reduce the presentation of symptoms associated with depression and anxiety.”

The two-dollar entry fee includes one raffle ticket. The raffle includes prizes from the Peanut Shop, Kimball Theatre, Retro’s and the Campus Shop.

Even the food offered at CenteredTribe will reflect the overall goal of wellness. Dining Services plans to offer healthy options from locations on and around campus. From showing how Chick-fil-A can be healthy to finding healthy meals on campus, students can learn how to choose their food wisely at CenteredTribe.

“We see the event as killing two birds with one stone,” President of PSP Weston Loehr ’11, said. “[We’re] giving some much needed aid to some TFA teacher and educating the campus about mental health and how to stay healthy during high stress times — times that all students are familiar with.”

SEAC’s goal of the philanthropy is that students will walk away from it feeling at least a little more at peace with the stresses of college life.

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