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The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Students’ social anxiety takes its toll in pandemic

Photo+courtey+of+Chris+Greene%2FUnsplash%0ATCC%E2%80%99s+website+has+a+list+of+mental+health+resources+for+students+in+need+of%0Aassistance.+There+are+also+resources+provided+for+military+veterans.
Photo courtey of Chris Greene/Unsplash TCC’s website has a list of mental health resources for students in need of assistance. There are also resources provided for military veterans.

Angelee Gutierrez
reporter

One challenge TCC students face during online learning is worsening social anxiety.

“I found that my social anxiety had actually worsened due to the pandemic because I wasn’t surrounding myself with people as often as I used to,” student Natalia Chavez said.

NE counselor Lilian Mabry said social isolation and the inability to meet in person have set students back with anxiety they coped with in the past. She said normal coping skills like therapy and meditation had previously helped them with their social anxiety issues.


 “It seems many students with social anxiety have used online learning as a way of dealing with their social anxiety,” Mabry said.

TCC student Nathalie Darkwa said her increased anxiety makes her feel less motivated to reach out to her classmates and professors. She becomes afraid of how she will be perceived, making her fear asking for help.

Darkwa said her anxiety used to involve feeling judged over the way she looked or dressed, but because she wears a mask, she does not worry about that as much.


“No one cares how I look. Therefore, I put less thought into how I present myself in public because no one will recognize me,” Darkwa said.

Chavez said online learning has helped her with presentations since she does not have anyone looking at her while she gives her speech. Her concern is how her anxiety will be when she comes back to school and must deliver presentations in person again.

Mabry said a good way to reduce social anxiety was for students to seek help, meditate, do breathing techniques, exercise, go to support groups and keep a journal. 

 “Psychology Today or the Anxiety and Depression Association of America have ways to connect with a therapist in their area,” Mabry said. “Visiting with a couple of different psychologists or counselors to obtain information and find a good fit to help assess their anxiety.” 

Mabry recommends students let their professors know when they are having a difficult time, and said every campus has Student Accessibility Resources offices that could help them find necessary accommodations.

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