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Coping with President Trump

At Crawford's request, Student Counseling Services holds post-election event

By Jack Evans, News Editor

Miami University Student Counseling Services (SCS) and the Office of Community Engagement and Service (OCES) held a post-election counseling event in Armstrong's Community Lounge early Thursday evening.

Almost 50 students, staff and faculty filled the room to discuss their feelings about Donald Trump's presidential victory as well as coping and organizing strategies for the next four years.

This event mirrored a national trend of educational institutions offering counseling support to students across the country, from high schools in Boston to the University of Michigan and Iowa State University, reported The Washington Post and The College Fix.

While SCS and OCES hosted the event, the event was coordinated on Wednesday morning by the request of President Crawford, said Ritch Hall, a post-doctoral fellow in psychology at SCS.

Hall, who emceed the event, spoke about the process of mourning and the ways students and staff can comfort themselves. He recommended spending time with your dog, if you have one.

"You can feel like the world is falling apart," said Hall. "But hey, Jojo still likes you."

He also emphasized that the fear and emotion you experience after a traumatic disappointment can be put to good use.

"Sometimes the status quo is bad for us. We don't take action that we might need to take," said Hall. "It's fear that puts you in that place where you have to take action. You can't just sit there and ignore," he added.

Christie Zwahlen, Miami's newly-appointed director of the office of Community Engagement and Service encouraged organization and action after the period of sadness is over.

"Only when you are organized can you ask the question 'What can we do?'" said Zwahlen.

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The overarching message of the event was one of support and comfort, but also a call for students to get back on their feet.

"Today is still the aftermath of a thing we didn't expect. It's the fallout of what I will hyperbolically call a nuclear explosion," said Hall. "The thing about a fallout is that you don't clean up right after a fallout. You wait a little bit until the oceans subside until you say, 'I've given enough time and I can marshal enough energy that now I can do something meaningful.'"