Are You Worried About a Student or Peer?

April 6, 2015

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Kognito Mental Wellness Training, Healthy UNH Blog
Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at

Take the free, online program Kognito to see how you can help them. 

It is very worrisome to see someone you know act strangely. You want to help them, but don’t know what to do, or how to talk to them. Unfortunately, this is a common scenario and many people do not help the person in distress because they simply do not know what to do. To solve this problem, the Counseling Center at UNH offers a free, on-line program called Kognito. This program is a simulation that helps you identify distressed behaviors in students or peers and how you should approach the situation. Kognito offers trainings for  faculty, staff, and students;  as well as modules to identify at-risk LGBTQ and Veteran students.

Kellen Story, a Resident Hall Director who has taken many training programs in how to help distressed individuals, describes his thoughts about the program:

“My initial reaction after completing the Kognito program was that it was the probably the best online training I’ve done since working in education.” He also said, “What I liked about the program was that it was interactive. It wasn’t preachy or demeaning, and it wasn’t condescending in terms of what I know or may not know.”

This program helps you identify odd behaviors in your friends or peers. It then explains to you the best way to talk to your friend/peer, and what kind of help you can offer the individual. For example, you can direct them to the counseling center, or find them someone they trust to talk to them.

 “I’d say that anyone affiliated with UNH should take this program – even if it’s only to create a base knowledge for the topics discussed”(Kellen Story).  Many faculty members think that it is not their job to interfere, or step in when they notice odd behavior in someone, however, IT IS EVERYONE’S JOB. 

Do not be idle when you notice someone in distress, or displaying at risk behavior; that person may need your help more than you think.


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