Women’s Services Inc.
Phone: (814) 724-4637
204 Spring Street Meadville, PA 16335
Megan Lenherr, NCC
Therapist, Allegheny Advocate
Please see the Emotional/Mental Health subtab for more information on the services provided.
Spiritual and Religious Life:
Jane Ellen Nickell, Chaplain & Associate Dean
Ordained United Methodist Clergy
Phone: (814) 332-2800
Office: Spiritual and Religious Life Office – Campus Center
Winslow Health Center
Phone: (814) 332-4355
Hours: Monday [8 AM – 6PM]; Tuesday-Friday [8 AM – 5PM]
Location: Schultz Hall, entrance on Park Ave
Meadville Medical Center:
Phone: (814) 333-5000
Emergency Room: (814) 333-5500
Counseling and Personal Development Center:
Phone: (814) 332-4368
Winslow Health and Wellness Center
Trae Yeckley Ph.D. LMFT
Danielle Pecar, MS
Please see the Emotional/Mental Health subtab for more information on the services provided.
Andrew Toles, MA, LPC
Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners (SANE)
Please see the Physical Health subtab for more information on the service provided.
Residence Advisors/ Community Advisors
Each standard residence hall has an assigned RA. There is a CA in charge of the whole building. Your RA will give out their number, as well as the duty phone, which is used for on-call emergencies over the weekend.
Office Phone: (814) 332-3865
Campus Center – Student Life Suite (3rd Floor)
Allegheny College Public Safety
Phone: (814) 332-3357
Sgt. William Merchbaker
It is important to note that, unless distinguished as a confidential resource, professors and staff/faculty members are all required to report disclosures to Title IX.
Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, Access & Social Justice Center (IDEAS) Center
Office Phone: (814) 332-2718
Campus Center 308
Director of the IDEAS Center
Associate Director of the IDEAS Center
Title IX Coordinator
Phone: (814) 332-3085
Jennifer Mangus, Deputy
Phone: (814) 332-2312
Mandy Prusia, Deputy
Phone (814) 332-3367
Office: Wise Center, 409
The confidential resources that serve to assist student survivors with this need are Women’s Services, specifically Megan Lenherr, and the counseling center. Contact information for both can be found on the Resources page.
The BEST way to work through trauma is through counseling.
The healing process is not something you have to face alone.
If the survivor is dealing with post-traumatic symptoms (panic attacks, nightmares, flashbacks, etc), the following techniques and coping skills will help the survivor to find some calmness before moving forward with their day. While these methods should help in caring for oneself post-assault, it is important to note that long term healing often goes hand in hand with counseling. Survivors are urged to find someone to speak with that can help the survivor process after they have encountered sexual violence. The following pages give specific instructions on how to engage with these exercises.
Calming Sleep Routine:
“Loneliness or overthinking can become a real challenge when you are ‘inactive’. Keeping a nightlight on and listening to the radio or calming music may help. Electronic screens do not help with relaxation. Alcohol will stimulate you instead of relaxing you due to its sugar levels.
- Slow your breathing – count in for 4 and out for 7.” (Somerset & Avon, pg. 13)
- Sit or stand comfortably with your back straight. Put one hand on your chest and the other on your stomach.
- Take a slow breath in through your nose, counting to four. The hand on your stomach should rise. The hand on your chest should move very little.
- Hold your breath for a count of seven.
- Exhale through your mouth to a count of eight, pushing out as much air as you can while contracting your abdominal muscles. The hand on your stomach should move in as you exhale, but your other hand should move very little.
- Inhale again, repeating the cycle until you feel relaxed and centered. (Recovering from Rape and Sexual Trauma)
Mindful Breathing To Clear Trauma:
- Create a safe sanctuary by first clearing whatever space you will use with a sage smudge, lighting candles, putting on light music, and gathering blankets and pillows for your comfort.
- Laying comfortably on the ground or in your bed, supported and warm, relax into your body.
- Begin with natural breath, at which point you may feel into where your hands want to be – perhaps next to your body with palms facing up, perhaps one hand on your belly and one on your heart.
- Begin by inhaling deeply into your belly, then a secondary deep inhale through your heart. This should feel like you are flooding these areas with oxygen. Bring your awareness to any thoughts or feelings that come up, noting them, inviting them to flow freely.
- Exhale out of your mouth, bringing awareness to trusting in love and guidance.
- Moving in this way – belly, heart, mouth – repeat for up to 30 minutes of active breathing, maximum, followed by 15 of regular, relaxed breathing.
- Be mindful to stop if you truly feel uncomfortable, slow down when necessary, and tune in to your body. Allow yourself to cry. Scream. Vocalize however you need to. If messages – sentences, affirmations, mantras – come up for you, repeat them silently out loud as feels appropriate.
- When you feel that you are finished, stay in a resting Savasana position and return to natural breath. You may feel tingling, tightness in your hands, or a sense of mild physical exhaustion. These are all temporary and are signs that you have really moved some things around.
- Afterward, you may have heightened sensitivity, so it’s best to avoid substances and loud noise/bright light. Treat yourself with great reverence to keep the energy flowing, and pay attention to what appears in your dreams after this practice. (Robin Lee)
These exercises are provided by the Somerset & Avon’s Self Help Guide.
1. Grounding can be done anywhere, any place or any time and no one needs to know you are doing it.
2. Use grounding when you are experiencing a trigger, when you feel strong emotions, feel like using substances, harming yourself or feel yourself dissociating.
3. You can rate your mood before and after, on a 0-10 scale.
4. Keep your eyes open to stay in touch with the present.
5. Stop yourself from talking about negative feelings at this stage, you want to distract away from this.
6. Focus on the here and now, not the past or future.
7. Grounding is more than just a relaxation strategy, it is used to distract and help extreme negative feelings. It is believed to be more effective for trauma than relaxation alone.
How to do it:
1. Have a good look around and describe your environment in detail, e.g. ‘I am on the train, I can see trees and a river….’
2. Mental games, e.g. go through the alphabet thinking of different things such as types of dogs, cities etc.
3. Age progression, if you have regressed you can slowly go back up eg: I am now 9, 10 etc. until you are back up to your current age.
4. Describe an everyday activity in detail, such as how to make a recipe.
5. Imagery, for example imagining a stop sign in your head, gliding on skates away from the pain, changing the ‘TV channel’ in your head to a better ‘ show’ or imagining a wall as a buffer between you and the pain.
6. Safety statements, thinking ‘I am safe now, I am in the present not the past, I am in this location and the date is……
7. Use humor, think of something funny.
8. Use concentration, say the alphabet backwards or practice some tricky sums
1. Run warm or cool water over your hands.
2. Focus on your breathing, notice each inhale and exhale, slow it down and repeat the word safe on each inhale.
3. Grab tightly onto your chair as hard as you can.
4. Touch different objects, your pen, your keys etc.
5. Dig your heels into the floor; remind yourself that you are connected to the ground.
6. Carry a grounding object in your pocket, a small rock etc. in your pocket that you can touch whenever you feel triggered.
7. Stretching, extend your arms fingers or legs as far as you can.
8. Clench and release your fists.
1. Say kind statements to yourself, e.g you will get through this etc.
2. Picture people you care about, look at photos of them.
3. Think of a safe place, it could be real or imagined, for example the beach, mountains etc.
4. Say coping statements such as I can handle this, I have done it before etc.
5. Plan a safe treat such as a nice dinner, bubble bath etc.
6. Think of things you are looking forward to, like seeing a close friend.
What if grounding doesn’t work…
People who have used grounding say it does work but requires practice to make it as effective as possible. The more you practice it the better it will work, so try to do some every day, it will become automatic after a while. You don’t have to use the methods listed above, you could think up your own method, you may find that it works better for you. Try to start grounding as early as possible in a negative mood cycle, for example just after a flashback, don’t leave it until later. You could create a recording of a grounding message that you can play whenever you need it, if you don’t want to use your own voice you could ask someone close to you to help. You can also teach family and friends about grounding so they can help if you become overwhelmed. Notice which method works best for you and don’t give up!
This page provides in depth information on the rape kit process. If you choose to get a rape kit, YOU DO NOT HAVE TO FILE A REPORT. The kit is still processed and placed into the CODIS system, but this is independent from your healing. Rape kits and the initial gathering of evidence can be extremely helpful if criminal or civil charges are pursued.
The confidential resources that serve to assist student survivors with this need are Meadville Medical Center, specifically the Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners (SANE), and Winslow Health Center. Contact information for both can be found on the previous page.
You must verbally consent to every step of a rape kit. You can stop at any point of the examination.
You can have as many OR as few people in the room – you decide.
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