Counseling Center Groups

Why Group?

Groups allow students to address their concerns through engagement with others. Some groups provide opportunities for students to explore personal issues and interpersonal relationships in a setting where honest feedback, reflection, and support from peers can occur; others provide a space for discussion, exploration, and providing support around common experiences. Groups are especially effective for those interested in exploring their interpersonal style and enhancing their approach to relationships in such areas as trust, intimacy, anger, conflict, assertiveness, taking risks, and improving self-esteem. Please discuss your interest in joining a group at your initial appointment or with your current therapist.

Not sure if group therapy is right for you? Your counselor can discuss with you the ways in which one or more of our groups could be beneficial to you.

Group Confidentiality

One of the most important aspects of participating in a group is the trust and safety that is built between members. While group therapists have an ethical and legal obligation to uphold client confidentiality, group members must be prepared to make a commitment to respect the right to confidentiality of other members in the group. As in any relationship, the development of trust, cohesion, and a sense of safety allows people to talk personally and honestly, and are essential to the group process. Depending on the group, some other commitments might include agreeing to come for a minimum number of sessions, making an effort to attend every group meeting, and informing group facilitators if you should need to miss a group session.

Spring 2019 Group Offerings

Below is the list of group offerings for the Fall 2018 semester. For more information or to be screened for a group, please call the Counseling Center at 410-516-8278.

Workshops and Outreach Programs are also offered to help students develop skills that boost resilience and improve their ability to manage stress. Workshops differ from Counseling Center groups in that they meet for a limited number of sessions and tend to focus on psychoeducation and skill building content. (Click here for more information about Fall 2018 Workshops.)

Outreach programming can be provided on a range of mental health related topics, and is made available upon request; see here for more information.


ADHD Group

This group is for students who struggle with common difficulties associated with ADHD, serving as both a support for students and a place develop skills and healthy habits around a variety of topics including organization, time management, focus and concentration, procrastination, self-care, and effective decision-making.

Contact: Dr. Kristen Besler


Asian & Asian-American Student Process Group

This group is for students of Asian heritage who wish to come together to discuss shared experiences and challenges as Asian/Asian American students. If you are a child of immigrant parents, are from a bi-racial background (with only one Asian parent), or if you are an Asian international student, this group is for you. Discussion topics may include: academic, occupational, and transition stress; self-esteem; cultural identities; value/worldview conflicts; relationships; parental/familial issues; navigating in-betweenness; and more.

Contact: Dr. J.M. Hou


Black Student Discussion Group

Open to undergraduate and graduate students who identify as members of the Black diaspora, this group provides an affirming place for students to help each other navigate the academic and social challenges of being a Black student at JHU. This group is a great place to get and give support around issues like racial trauma and microaggressions, share strategies for stress relief, and celebrate each other’s successes.

Contacts: Dr. Leslie Leathers & Liz Cook, M.S.


Dissertation Group

Working on a dissertation can sometimes feel lonely, overwhelming, and can seem never-ending. Join other advanced graduate students to share suggestions, encouragement, and support. Topics discussed include motivation, time and workload management, self-doubt, perfectionism, dealing with faculty, and balancing dissertation with other things in your life.

Contact: Dr. Barbara Baum


Empowerment Group

This group is for those who identify as women (cis or trans), non-binary, gender fluid, and genderqueer. The group provides a safe and supportive space for survivors of unwanted sexual experiences that occurred during their teenage or adult years. Members will have the opportunity to discuss the impact of these experiences, connect with others, and receive support in regaining a greater sense of control and empowerment in their lives. Weekly topics are chosen by group members and may include emotional experiences, relationships, boundaries/ assertiveness, trust, safety, self-care, spirituality, and identity-related questions.

Contact: Dr. Katherine Jones


Graduate Student Process Group

This group provides a space for graduate students to discuss and explore personal concerns and challenges, while developing a better Understanding of Self and Others (USO). Themes might include, but are not limited to: developing more satisfying relationships (romantic, social, and familial); difficult family and social histories; coping with academic demands; and life transitions. Similar to Graduate Student USO Group, but with different name, day, & time.

Contact: Dr. Shemika Brooks


Graduate Student USO Group

This group provides a space for graduate students to discuss and explore personal concerns and challenges, while developing a better Understanding of Self and Others (USO). Themes might include, but are not limited to: developing more satisfying relationships (romantic, social, and familial); difficult family and social histories; coping with academic demands; and life transitions. Similar to Graduate Student Process Group, but with different name, day, & time.

Contacts: Dr. Shemika Brooks & Liz Cook, M.S.


Latina Women’s Support Group

This group is designed to provide a safe and supportive environment to explore personal experiences, obtain emotional support, promote self-care, and enhance community building among Latina students. Utilizing culturally appropriate methods and practices of healing, participants will be encouraged to explore topics such as navigating cultural contexts, family relationships, identity, dating, work, stigma, discrimination, and the impact of these issues on their JHU experience.

Contact: Dr. Susi Ferradas


LGBTQ Student Support Group(s)

Depending on participants, one or two groups may be created for all LGBTQ students; or, one group for students who are interested in discussing their gender identity and one group for students who are exploring their sexuality. Topics discussed include coming out, exploring gender and/or sexual identity, negotiating social interactions, and exploring dating and relationships.

Contacts: Dr. Rosemary Nicolosi & Anna Bartko, M.A.


Living with Loss Group

Grief can feel overwhelming and lonely, especially in the context of college and campus life. This group is an opportunity to connect with other students experiencing a significant loss. Come learn about grief and share your experience in a safe and supportive environment.

Contacts: Dr. Christine Conway & Nader Albadawi, M.A.


Men’s USO Group

A group focused on Understanding Self & Others (USO) specifically for men. In particular, this group will provide opportunities for men to hear and share stories from other men facing similar concerns and challenges without competition or shame. Topics may include academic, career and transition stress, relationships, interpersonal skills, identities, masculinity, and more.

Contact: Dr. J.M. Hou


Romantic Relationships 101: Understanding How You Love

This group provides a safe, comfortable, dynamic space for students to explore romantic relationships and develop skills to help them have fulfilling romantic relationships. Topics discussed may include healthy relationships, dating, managing a breakup, communication skills, conflict resolution, love languages, fighting fair, boundary setting, and much more. Students are highly encouraged to bring up topics important to them.

Contacts: Dr. Susi Ferradas & Huy Le, M.A.


Substance Change Group

This confidential group is for graduate and undergraduate students who have experienced negative consequences due to alcohol and/or drug use and are considering moderating or eliminating use. Group participation will provide members with peer support, new perspectives, and skills that support change.

Contact: Dr. Fred Gager

Undergrad Understanding Self and Others (USO) Group

By examining the interactions that occur between group members, USO participants can better understand their relational styles. Interaction skills that are practiced within the group can lead to satisfying professional, peer, and romantic relationships.

Contact: Dr. Fred Gager

Understanding Self and Others (USO) Group

A second USO group, as described above, is offered to a mixed group population of undergraduate and non-teaching graduate students.

Contacts: Dr. Shemika Brooks & Nader Albadawi, M.A.

Yoga As Healing

This is an 8-week mind/body group for survivors of any type of trauma. Students of all genders are welcome. This group offers survivors a safe space to gain greater awareness around strength, stability, assertiveness, and mindfulness. Sessions will focus on different themes, various restorative and therapeutic postures, explore positive affirmations, and will be coupled with guided activities including readings, journaling, and creative exercises. No prior yoga experience necessary. Mats will be provided. Please dress comfortably.

Contact: Dr. Katherine Jones