Watertown Daily Times | JCC opens new campus health and wellness building

Jefferson Community College unveiled its new Health and Wellness Center on campus Wednesday.

The center will centralize the health and counseling services offered by the college to provide easier access to students.

The project was funded through a $500,000 Community Schools Grant, which will be spread out over three years, as well as additional funds from the Jefferson Community College Foundation.

The 2,000-square foot center, on the west side of campus between the McVean Student Center and the Dulles Building, cost around $184,000, and the remaining funds will help pay for the center’s employees as well as the array of programs and partnerships provided by Jefferson Community Schools.

Two part-time counselors and two intern counselors will be employed there. Additionally, the college nurse, physician assistant and psychiatric nurse practitioner will operate out of the office.

Inside the building are a handful of exam rooms and counseling offices, a food pantry and a lactation room.

Along with counseling services for students, Jefferson Community Schools provides emergency day care, transportation and tax preparation.

JCS partners with several local organizations to implement the programing, including ACR Health, Credo Community Center, Fort Drum Regional Health Planning Organization and PIVOT, among others.

Katy E. Troester-Trate is director of JCS. She is also a personal counselor for the JCC Health and Wellness Center.

She said the new building creates a one-stop shop for all the resources JCS provides.

“It’s always been about connecting students to resources,” Ms. Troester-Trate said.

According to statistics provided by the college, use of the health and wellness services has gone up in the last year. In particular, use of counseling services has gone up 178 percent, and loan default resolution assistance has gone up 325 percent.

JCC President Carole A. McCoy said the new center complements the Empire State Poverty Reduction Initiative, a $25 million state program that seeks to partner state and local governments, non-profits and other organizations to find poverty solutions.

Ms. McCoy said bringing these groups closer together through the health center will help ensure students finish their college education despite challenges they may face, be they financial or personal.

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