An eating disorders counselor is the newest member of the counseling services staff.
Andrea Sussel was hired this year after previous experience in outpatient and inpatient services. Sussel’s specialty is in the area of eating disorders but like the other members of Cabrini’s Counseling Services, she serves as a generalist as well.
“We’re all generalists here,” said Dr. Sara Maggitti, director of Counseling Services. “We see and work with all students.”
By being generalists, they have the ability to assist students in all different areas, rather than having each person specialize in just one area. This practice also frees up space so they are able to meet with students more promptly.
“I encourage students looking for help to meet with the first available counselor, that way we can schedule an appointment with them within a week.” Maggitti said when asked about students who may seek assistance when suffering from an eating disorder. “After the first meeting I am able to determine whether I can work with them or if I should refer them to Andrea, our eating disorder specialist.”
Along with individual counseling services, Sussel will be offering different group services that will address eating disorders. One such group will focus on the “Freshman 15 and you” a look at how to avoid the inevitable weight gain during the first year of college.
Body Image groups will also be offered throughout the year in attempt to form support groups for individuals who suffer with these issues.
Maggitti said that Sussel’s role at Cabrini would involve finding out the need on campus and then discovering ways of addressing these needs.
“She really is in charge of outreach programs,” said Maggitti about Sussel’s role as the eating disorder specialist.
Maggitti feels that eating disorders are an issue, especially in a college atmosphere. She said she continuously heard from students that their body image was always an issue and she decided it was time to address this issue head-on.
“There’s so much pressure to look a certain way. Girls think the only way they can do it is by starving themselves,” senior English and communication major AnnMarie Chacko said. “Before they started offering these services a lot of girls were going to outside counseling.”
Students can call the Counseling Services to set up an appointment within a week. All meetings are completely confidential unless there is a serious risk involved.
Along with their regular appointments, emergency walk-in hours are also offered from noon to 1p.m. without an appointment. The office is located in Grace Hall room 196 and can be reached at 610-902-8561. Additional information is on Cabrini’s Web site.
Maggitti urges all students who seek help from the Counseling Services to set up an appointment with the first available counselor and specific arrangements can be made after the initial meeting.