Counseling Center Groups

As Counseling Center services continue to be offered remotely, all counseling groups will take place through secure video conferencing.

Why Group?

Counseling 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; and still others offer skills that can be practiced and applied in lived experience.

Treatment 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. Drop-in groups offer places to connect and to learn without as much of a commitment to developing cohesiveness with specific individuals. Please discuss your interest in joining a group at your initial appointment or with your current therapist.

Not sure if group counseling is right for you? Your therapist 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 rights to privacy and/or 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 process, no matter which group(s) you are attending. Depending on the groups, 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 and/or other members if you should need to miss a group session.

Available Groups

Current Listing of Treatment Groups

Below is the list of confidential counseling groups that are being offered with a closed roster for the Fall 2020 semester (i.e. therapist[s] as identified treatment provider[s]; group screening for fit required; some level of commitment expected).

These groups are open to KSAS, WSE, and Peabody students who are located in Maryland (or other locations where the facilitator[s] are licensed or permitted to practice). For more information or to schedule a group screening appointment, please call the Counseling Center at 410-516-8278.

View listing of drop-in groups (i.e., non-treatment; no roster, less commitment).

Asian & Asian American Students Process Group

(Mandarin speaking available; depends on participant composition.) This discussion space is for U.S. and oversea students of Asian heritage to come together to discuss shared experiences and challenges. 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; racial and/or pandemic stress and more.

Contact(s): Dr. JM Hou

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(s): Dr. Rosemary Nicolosi

FLI Discussion Group

Transitioning to college can be a challenging time for students who are the first in their family to attend, or students facing financial difficulties. This group will be a safe and supportive environment for first-generation/limited-income (FLI) students to discuss personal, academic, financial, or emotional struggles, build community, and get connected to appropriate resources to thrive along your academic journey.

Contact: Dr. Tiffany Llewellyn

Graduate Student Therapy Group

This group provides a space for graduate students to discuss and explore interpersonal concerns and challenges, while developing a better Understanding of Self and Others (USO). Themes might include, but are not limited to: observing and processing ways of managing conflict; 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, and time.

Contact(s): Dr. Shemika Brooks & William Nation, M.A.

Graduate Student USO Group

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

Contact(s): Dr. Shemika Brooks & Tram Huynh, LMHC

Men’s Group: Voices Beneath the Mask

Men’s group will provide opportunities for men to hear and share stories from other men facing similar concerns and challenges without competition or shame. In particular, this group will help men develop a better Understanding of Self & Others (USO). Topics may include academic, career and transition stress, relationships, interpersonal skills, identities, masculinity, racial and/or pandemic stress. Come join us. Let’s share, explore, learn and grow together!

Contact(s): Dr. JM Hou

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 support, new perspectives and skills that support change.

Contact(s): Dr. Fred Gager

Undergrad Understanding Self & Others Group

This USO group is for undergraduate students who want to gain a greater understanding of their relational styles. By examining interactions that occur within the group, participants develop skills that can lead to satisfying professional, peer and romantic relationships.

Contact(s): Dr. Fred Gager & Alexandra Lane, M.A.

Understanding Self & Others (USO) Group

This group provides a space for undergraduate and non-teaching graduate students to discuss and explore interpersonal concerns and challenges, while developing a better Understanding of Self and Others (USO). Themes might include, but are not limited to: observing and processing ways of managing conflict; developing more satisfying relationships (romantic, social, and familial); difficult family and social histories; coping with academic demands; and life transitions.

Contact(s): Dr. Shemika Brooks & William Nation, M.A.

Virtual Eating and Body Image Group

Recovering from eating and body image issues can be a long, challenging, and isolating process. Learn emotion-focused and communication skills by supporting and connecting with other recovering individuals, exploring the emotions and relational functions of your symptoms, and developing strategies to continue moving towards your recovery.

Contact(s): Dr. Tristan Barsky & Nyasha Chikowore, M.S.

Yoga As Healing

This is a 6-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(s): Karen Taylor, LCSW-C & Nila Berger, E-RYT200

Current Listing of Drop-In Groups

Below is the list of drop-in groups for the Fall 2020 semester (i.e., non- treatment; no roster, less commitment). You do not have to be a client of the Counseling Center in order to participate in these groups.

These groups are open to the JHU student community as described. For more information, please call the Counseling Center at 410-516-8278.

View listing of confidential treatment groups (i.e., therapist[s] as identified treatment provider[s]; group screening for fit required; some level of commitment expected).

Critical Coping Group

In the midst of mass traumas and loss, high anxiety, and increasing uncertainty about what our lives will look like, the greater the variety of skills and tools we can access, the more we are equipped to face the challenges here and ahead. This drop-in group will provide education and practice in a different skill each week, all drawn from key components of trauma symptom management. Participate in all eight sessions of the rotating and repeating curriculum, come when you can, or pick and choose what sessions would be most helpful to you. Weekly topics include: grounding, window of tolerance/dialing down, RAIN (mindfulness practice for managing thoughts), containment, calm place imagery, four elements of stress reduction, and self-care/loving kindnes.

Mondays 5:30–5:55pm. Register for each group using your JHU email here.

Contact(s): Karen Taylor, LCSW-C. & Alexandra Lane, M.A.

Thursdays 1-1:45pm. For the Thursday group, Register using your JHU email here

Contact(s): Fred Gager, Psy.D. & Alexandra Lane, M.A.

Pandemic Support/Discussion Space

Wednesdays 3:30–4:45pm

The Pandemic Support Group provides a place for undergraduates to receive support for life challenges (including but not limited to academic, social, health and career) created by COVID 19.

Contact(s): Dr. Fred Gager

Parenting Support Group

Every Other Wednesday 3:30–5pm, beginning September 2nd
This is a drop-in group specifically for those who are navigating roles as both students and parents simultaneously. A space to connect with others who are facing similar challenges, to give and to receive support.

Register once using your JHU email here.

Contact(s): Dr. Shemika Brooks

Peabody Black Student Discussion Group

Every Other Friday 1–2:30pm

Open to Peabody 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. 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.

Contact: Dr. Tiffany Llewellyn & Nyasha Chikowore, M.S.

Racial Trauma Group

Every Other Wednesday 3:30–5pm, beginning September 9th

This is a discussion space for JHU students to discuss issues and experiences in the world, in our communities, and at JHU, related to racial trauma. All to whom the topic applies are welcome to engage in the space as often as would be helpful, and no ongoing commitment is required. Advanced registration (with student’s associated JH email address) is required once in order for the students to receive the link to join any session(s).

Register once using your JHU email here.

Contact(s): Dr. Shemika Brooks & Dr. Tiffany Llewellyn

Virtual Support Group for Loved Ones of Individual with Eating and Body Image Issues

Every Other Tuesday at 2pm

Supporting loved ones who are struggling with eating and/or body image issues can be a uniquely challenging experience. These open group discussions will allow you to give and receive support around the challenges of supporting your loved one, while developing new approaches to providing them with more helpful support and communication.

Contact(s): Dr. Tristan Barsky & Tram Huynh, LMHC