Empathic Peers Offering Wisdom, Encouragement, and Resources (EmPOWER) is a Graduate Student Organization based in the College of Earth, Ocean, and Environment (CEOE) to promote mental health and wellness among Earth, Ocean, and Environment graduate students. EmPOWER’s activities include a graduate student mentoring network, where senior and first-year students in each department are paired to create a support system for first-year students and provide mentoring opportunities for senior students. At the department (and as needed campus) level, EmPOWER hosts monthly de-stressing events (such as movie nights, craft making, and hikes), as well as personal development workshops. EmPOWER also organizes CEOE-wide social events, and workshops focused on professional development.
The role of EmPOWER is to mentor new students and help them navigate academic and community support resources. For example, Peer Mentors could point Mentees to Academic Directors or the Assistant Dean for Graduate Students for academic needs or mental health professionals and housing resources for community support.