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Happiness Week - October 26-30 

Happy Movie PosterHappiness Week is an exploration and a celebration of Joy. But how do we harness it, even in difficult times? Can we increase our happiness levels? What are the habits of happy people? 

In order to understand emotions like stress, depression and anxiety, we must also understand what makes us happy in this life. So we turn the spotlight onto this positive emotion in hopes of helping it grow and thrive. 2020 has been a stressful year for many, but we hope that this week serves as a reminder that joy can be found everywhere, if we only look for it.

Students and Employees are invited to participate in HAPPINESS WEEK at BARTON!

See this week’s schedule of events:

  • Pay It Forward Monday: Do a random act of kindness for someone. 
  • Gratitude Tuesday: Tell someone you know you appreciate them. 
  • Inner Child Wednesday: Wear a name tag that says what you first wanted to be when you grew up OR stop by the library (Barton County Campus) and grab a coloring page. 
  • Spread Happiness Thursday: Let us know what things bring you joy by posting on the designated bulletin boards in the library (Barton County Campus) and the Union or on social media!
  • Feeling Good Friday: Bring joy to the 5 senses: Wear your Halloween costume or favorite sweatshirt around campus today. Then enter to win all kinds of delicious treats in the “Simply Sweet Sweepstakes” in the library from 9am-2pm! (Barton County Campus only). 

Share your participation each day on social media with the hashtag #HappyCougars to WIN T-SHIRTS AND PRIZES ALL WEEK!

PLUS: Stream for free the award winning documentary “Happy” anytime starting now through December 1st.  (Also available through films on demand or through DVD checkout through the library after December 1st.)


COVID-19 Announcement

As Barton takes measures to deal with the Coronavirus public health challenge, we will continue to work to support the campus community during this challenging time. Please note the following:

Counseling Services

The Coronavirus pandemic has propelled us into stressful and uncertain times. We know that you may be experiencing an increase in frequency or difficulty managing emotions such as stress, anxiety, and loneliness. You don’t have to go through it alone.

  • Barton Counseling is available for counseling services during normal business hours during the Academic Year. No onsite services are provided during this time.
  • All appointments will be conducted via video during normal business hours. If video consultations are not feasible, please contact our counselor for alternative arrangements.
  • If you are a current client and need to visit with your counselor, please call or email your counselor to schedule a phone or video consultation.
  • If you are not a current client but need mental health assistance, call our office to discuss available options.
  • Due to the change in our service delivery, please review the Informed Consent for Telehealth.
  • If you are in crisis, reach out to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at (800) 273-8255 or text the Crisis Text Line at 741-741.

For emergencies please dial 9-1-1.

Please not that providing therapy services to students who are currently outside of the state of Kansas may be limited due to laws which govern the ability to practice in other states. We are continuously monitoring the changing requirements for tele-therapy and will make changes when able in order to increase access to counseling service for students.

Consultations with the campus counselor are available to determine if you are eligible to receive services through the campus counselor or if she can assist you in obtaining a referral to a counselor in your area. Please contact our counselor with any questions. Please indicate if you have an urgent issue and need to be seen immediately.

Special Programming

Free “Stress Less” Video Series

TAO is offering free access to several mindfulness videos to assist people in coping in these uncertain times.  For access, visit taoconnect.org.

Are You Distressed? A Self-Check List

  • Increased worry, fear and feelings of being overwhelmed
  • Depressive symptoms that persist and/or intensify
  • Inability to focus or concentrate accompanied by decreased academic or work performance or performance of other daily activities
  • Sleep difficulties
  • Excessive crying
  • Isolating or withdrawing from others, fear of going into public situations
  • Unhealthy coping (e.g., increased alcohol or drug use, engaging in risky/impulsive behaviors)
  • A feeling of hopelessness and/or a paralyzing fear about the future
  • Sudden anger or irritability, or noticeable changes in personality

(University of Kansas - “CAPS-COVID 19 RESPONSE”)

Seeking Support

It's not unusual to experience several of the types of distress listed above during times of uncertainty and stress. If you notice these signs in yourself, reach out to family and friends for support, and engage in healthy coping strategies such as exercise; eating well; getting sufficient sleep; practicing yoga, meditation, progressive muscle relaxation, or other mindfulness activities; taking time for yourself; engaging in a hobby or other enjoyable activity).

(University of Kansas - “CAPS-COVID 19 RESPONSE”)

Adapted from: Amherst College – “Counseling Center: COVID-19 News and Updates” 

Professional Mental Health Counseling is available to help students with personal issues or academic concerns that would ultimately affect the achievement of their academic goals. Counseling is also available to assist students in exploring choices, recognizing consequences, and assuming personal responsibility. Referral services are available for career counseling on campus, as well as for community resources.

What is Counseling

Counseling is a chance to talk over what is on your mind with an objective person. The counselor can help you learn new skills and ways of looking at situations so that you will be more capable of solving problems on your own. Individuals are helped to understand their feelings and behaviors, their relationships with others, their particular situation, choices, and decisions.

Consultation & Outreach

Students who are unsure if campus counseling is right for them may benefit from consultation and outreach. During a consultation, counselor and student/employee can determine the nature of the problem and what the appropriate resource(s) may be for addressing it. Together, the decision may be made to begin campus counseling, seek a local resource, obtain a referral or pursue other avenues of resolution.

Counselor is available for consultation with students, other departments, student organizations, faculty and staff.


Your visit, inquiries and discussions are private and confidential. Some exceptions to confidentiality do exist, such as if you pose an imminent threat to yourself or others.


There is no cost for a student, staff or faculty member to work with the campus counselor.

Why Do Students Come for Counseling?

The college years are an exciting, but sometimes stressful time. Many students encounter problems that are not easily resolvable... or, their usual ways of handling problems aren't working well for some reason.

Among the most common concerns which students bring to the Counseling Services are:

  • Low self-confidence
  • Finding, helping, or losing a relationship
  • Getting along with others
  • Puzzling or distressing emotional states
  • Self-defeating behaviors
  • Controlling use of alcohol and drugs
  • Studying more effectively
  •  Life purpose and direction
  • Making better decisions
  • Examining career options
  • Sexual identity concerns

Initiating and continuing in Counseling is voluntary and a person can choose to end counseling at any time.

The thought of counseling may be intimidating. It's important to know that the decision to get counseling is sign of strength and maturity, not weakness. Those who look to better themselves and their situations are doing what is needed to achieve personal well-being by being proactive, responsible and resourceful.