The Lyco Lowdown: An Insider's View of Life at Lycoming

Animals are Therapeutic

Posted by Stephanie Osczepinski on Nov 15, 2016 1:33:15 PM
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Ever since I was a little girl, I get excited to be around animals, especially the furry kind. I never had a cat or a dog as a pet (my mother is allergic), but I have had a few fish and guinea pigs. I am fortunate enough to have an aunt and uncle nearby who have several dogs, including a corgi named Keishka. I spent a lot of time at their house when I was young because they live nearby, so I grew up with a few of their puppies.

Many Lycoming College students love animals

Animals have always helped put my mind at ease, and being around animals is often the best part of my day.

I originally came to Lycoming College in 2013 in pursuit of a biology degree, hoping to be the next Jane Goodall. However, during my seconds semester, I realized that it wasn't the physical sciences, but rather the social sciences that were best fit for me. Ever since, I have been a psychology major here at Lycoming College, but that hasn't stopped my love for animals.

Emotional Support Animal Lycoming College

I believe animals are very good therapy, and I discovered in 2015 that a few students on campus had emotional support animals living in their dorm rooms. As someone with many mental health struggles, I started discussing with my counselor about the possibility of getting an emotional support animal myself. After filling out some paperwork in March of 2016, the college approved me to have an animal live in my dorm to help with my anxiety and other struggles. My family and I adopted a month-old guinea pig near my hometown, and I decided to name her Nessarose.

Support animals in college

Nessarose (named after the Wicked Witch of the East in the Broadway musical Wicked) currently resides with me in Wesley Hall, and as an emotional support animal, she has helped me feel happy in times of struggle. Nessarose, or Nessa for short, is always up for some snuggles if I am stressed out or in need of some cheering up, and she enjoys running around my room, which makes me laugh. People often worry that she must be so loud, but guinea pigs are not exactly loud creatures. Unless she really wants attention or food, she does not squeak very loudly (guinea pigs don't sound like pigs) and she is generally asleep at night when I am asleep. As an animal lover, I honestly believe Nessa is one of the best things in my life because she is always there to listen, she likes to snuggle in my arms, her fur is very soft, and she makes me smile. Animals are therapeutic, and I am so happy that I have Nessarose with me at college.

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Topics: Student Life