By Victoria Chiaramonte

On the Cape Cod Community College (4Cs) campus, the odds are that everyone knows at least one person whose lives have been negatively affected by drugs. There are also a good number of students on campus suffering with mental health issues and traumas that can and will affect their performances not only in school, but also in everyday life. There are resources at 4Cs to help people overcome these issues and go on to live happier lives.

To help raise awareness, 4Cs held a special event called Red Ribbon Week, in the Grossman Commons building. The event was themed in red to represent the epidemic of drugs that are being abused not just across our campus, but throughout the entire community.

The goal of the event was to get people to pledge not to use drugs for at least that day. Red ribbons were pinned to a board as an external representation of the internal promise students and faculty made with themselves to abstain from using any harmful drugs. Many informational flyers were given out, explaining the epidemic of drug abuse across all of Cape Cod.

Despite this being a widespread disease across the entire country right now, you can get help right here on campus for those struggling with addiction or psychological bondage. The Wellness Center is a facility at 4Cs to help students overcome whatever struggles they may be having so that they can succeed here in every aspect.

“We have students that come here because they are stressed and need a place to vent or a place to chill out or ask questions,” said Veronica LaPlante, a case manager and advisor at the Wellness Center. “Faculty and staff bring students to us if they know they are having a hard time or are concerned about their student’s wellbeing.”

For anything that is psychologically harmful or disturbs basic needs, the Wellness Center steps in. They work closely with students in order to help them achieve a higher quality of life.

“I really like the one-on-one student connection,” said Laplante. “If a student is still in college, you know that there is still even a little bit of hope.”

According to LaPlante, college is a great way to find connections and receive the support needed if a student comes from a difficult background or struggles with academics because of their psychological barriers.

“Everyone here at 4Cs is super supportive and encouraging, which is really nice because you don’t get that everywhere,” said LaPlante.

There are a variety of students of all ages and backgrounds that appreciate the Wellness Center and what it has done for them. The atmosphere is calming and feels safe according to the students.

“Veronica Laplante is very nice, and it’s a good place for people to hang out,” said a 4Cs student familiar with the program, who wished to rename nameless. “It is kind of like a safety net for me. If I need a place to hang out and chill, it gives me a place to do that. And they are usually there anytime I need them, so I don’t have to worry about being alone. It’s a good place [to go to] if you need help with something because they understand,” he said.

LaPlante and the rest of the Wellness Center have everyone’s best interests at heart and their mission is to simply help students and give them the support that they need. The Red Ribbon event is just one example out of many initiatives the school is undertaking to help those who are struggling.

The Student Wellness & Counseling department can be reached at 774-330-4550. If you are silently suffering in any way, please reach out.