Mental Health Matters: SEGi Counsellor’s Perspectives

In contemporary society, mental health issues are increasingly prevalent, particularly among college students. The diagnosis of various disorders, including anxiety and depression, is on the rise, as reported by The Star (2021). Consequently, counselling services within colleges must cultivate an environment that is not only welcoming and safe but also confidential, allowing students to address their concerns without the fear of judgment freely.

Mr. Nicksheareer, a dedicated Student Services Counsellor at SEGi College Sarawak, shared profound insights gleaned from his extensive experience. Reflecting on his tenure, he highlighted one of the most poignant challenges faced during group support sessions for depression. He recounted instances where some participants bravely disclosed thoughts of suicide and self-harm, triggering unwelcome memories among others in the group. Despite such complexities, Mr. Nicksheareer fervently advocates for group therapy, recognising its efficacy in aiding students to navigate their mental health challenges. This approach fosters a sense of camaraderie and belonging among participants, providing them with invaluable emotional support.

College counsellors undergo rigorous training in handling emergency situations, equipped with the requisite skills to identify signs of mental health issues and make appropriate referrals to resources when needed. Moreover, counselling services place significant emphasis on both intervention and prevention strategies, aiming to mitigate the severity of mental health concerns.

Establishing a positive rapport with students is paramount for college counsellors. Mr. Nicksheareer underscores the importance of this relationship, noting that proactive identification of mental health concerns coupled with tailored support groups, therapeutic interventions, and academic accommodations can significantly enhance students’ overall mental well-being. Providing timely access to such services not only addresses individual needs but also contributes to dismantling the stigma surrounding mental illness, thereby fostering a nurturing and reassuring environment within college counselling services.

In essence, the commitment to fostering mental health support within higher education institutions, as exemplified by SEGi College Sarawak, underscores the collective endeavour towards prioritising the well-being of students, ensuring they receive the necessary support to thrive academically and personally.

About the Authors:


Programme Leader and Lecturer (Early Childhood Education), Faculty of Education, Languages, Psychology & Music, SEGi College Sarawak

Laura is a dedicated educator with a Master’s in the Art of Teaching from the Adventist International Institute of Advanced Studies in 2011 and a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and Education from Asia-Pacific International University (formerly known as Mission College) in 2004. Over a 19-year teaching career, she has worked across diverse international and multicultural settings, spanning preschools, kindergartens, and primary to tertiary institutions. Laura’s teaching journey began in Bangkok, Thailand, at Ekamai International School, where she advanced from an Intern Teacher to Head Teacher in various roles. After stints at SRI® College and Sunny Hill Primary School, Kuching, Laura took on a leadership position as Acting Principal for a Specialised Vocational Diploma. Since 2015, Laura has been a Programme Leader and Lecturer at SEGi College Sarawak. She capped her journey by contributing her expertise to the International Primary 2 programme at Tunku Putra HELP School in 2020.

Nicksheareer Menyimbang Anak Saparin

Counsellor, SEGi College Sarawak

Nicksheareer Menyimbang Anak Saparin is a passionate mental health advocate and counsellor based in Sarawak, Malaysia. With roles at SEGi College Sarawak and previously at Kolej Matrikulasi Kuching, he provides invaluable support to students facing personal and academic challenges. As a Trainee Counsellor at Sarawak Skills & I-Cats University College, he honed his skills, preparing him for his current roles. Nicksheareer actively seeks to dismantle stigmas surrounding mental illness and remains at the forefront of counselling techniques through ongoing learning. Through his writing, he aims to inspire resilience and promote emotional well-being on a broader scale. Nicksheareer stands as a beacon of empathy and support, making a tangible difference in the lives of those he serves in a world where mental health awareness is crucial.

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