Workshops help students cope with mental stressors

Lauren Mason

UK’s Disability Resource Center and Counseling Center have partnered to host biweekly workshops in February to help students cope with common internal struggles. 

The workshops are offered every Tuesday and Thursday in February from 6-7 p.m. in classroom 219 of The 90.

DRC Disability Accommodations Consultant Duke Pettit and graduate student Justin Benton, who also works for the DRC, lead the workshops on Thursday evenings. Pettit and Benton work with students who have anxiety, depression and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder. 

Within the workshops, they provide ideas and strategies to help students manage the anxieties and social structures that accompany their disorders. This setting allows students to gather in an intimate environment to confidentially communicate with one another and share coping strategies. 

“The DRC exists to understand the student’s unique needs and then to provide the appropriate accommodations that support students’ academic goals,” Pettit said. 

The DRC offers a multitude of services for students on campus, including consultation services, alternative testing accommodations, service animal registration and door-to-door transportation services for those who have mobile impairments. According to, the center also partners with many external resources who work to further habilitate these students with disabilities. 

DRC Director David Beach noted the importance of these partnerships in order for students to be able to fully obtain the college experience. 

“We work with campus partners to ensure students have access to necessary services to allow them to fully participate in the university community,” Beach said. 

According to Pettit, the DRC currently provides accommodating services for over 1,740 undergraduate students. The most used of these services include alternate classroom and testing accommodations. 

“The DRC has provided me with the tools to complete a successful and lucrative college career. Without their amenities, I wouldn’t have been able to have such a promising future,” DRC client and junior journalism major Katherine Manouchehri said.

“The accommodations we can provide are intended to take into account the processing, attention, physical, learning or psychological impairments that can seriously hinder a student’s ability to compete with their peers and to achieve academically. We must all keep in mind that not every student learns in the same way and that we are all differently abled,” Pettit said.

Students can contact the DRC by phone at (859) 257-2754 to set up an appointment and become registered for their services. Students can also be diagnosed with such disorders through UK’s Student Health Clinic. 

The Counseling Center leads the workshops each Tuesday and the DRC each Thursday.