Pottstown Wellness Center Construction Due in Spring
Montgomery County Community College’s new Wellness Center will be located on the first floor of its North Hall building (at top), 16 W. High St.
POTTSTOWN PA – A $1.1 million Community Mental Health Services Block Grant recently received from Montgomery County will enable Montgomery County Community College to open a wellness center at its Pottstown campus during 2022, and also to continue its Partnership on Work Enrichment and Readiness program, the college said Tuesday (Jan. 4, 2022).
The grant provides $1 million for the center, to be located on the first floor of the college’s North Hall building, 16 W. High St. Construction is anticipated to start during the spring semester.
It additionally provides $100,000 for the free program intended to help eligible individuals receive a two-credit college course that focuses on college and career preparation skills. It’s specifically targeted for persons in mental health and addiction recovery, to develop and reach their educational and career goals. Since starting in 2006 it has served nearly 600 students, the college noted.
“Long before anyone heard of COVID-19,” the college “recognized many students struggled in their classes because they needed help with essential needs, such as physical and mental well-being, food and housing security, transportation and family care,” Wellness Center Director Nichole Kang explained. “The pandemic and its lingering impact have amplified those needs.”
According to the results of a recent healthy minds survey involving 707 MCCC students, about 80 percent of participants reported that mental health issues were affecting their schoolwork, said Kang.
Aligned with MCCC called its “holistic approach to student support and success,” the center expects to offer comprehensive assistance for individual needs. It will expand some of MCCC’s existing programs, and add new support services.
“There will be an educational space to provide wellness programming to students and staff, and meeting space where students can get help for their non-academic needs from a resource coach and connect with peers,” Kang said. “We’ll also have private space for in-person mental health therapy provided by partner organizations, which will be available to both students and community members.”
Onsite services will augment existing online services available at no cost to all students. They include asynchronous chat and live telehealth therapy.
The center also will house MCCC’s “Stock Up for Success” food pantry with refrigerators for produce and dairy products, as well as freezers. The pantry also includes toiletries and personal care items. MCCC will collaborate with Gwynedd Mercy University on a food insecurity project, receiving food from the Pottstown Cluster of Religious Communities and Manna on Main Street.
The center will offer office space for the college Veterans Services, the ACT 101 Scholars, and Keystone Education Yields Success programs. It also will open a sensory space for students on the autism spectrum, who may have sensory needs, or for students who simply need to unplug and decompress, as well as space for meditation and prayer.
For more information about the center and its services, send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Photos provided by Montgomery County Community College