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Marriage and Family Therapy grad students share tips on relationships

Tuesday night, Marriage and Family Therapy graduate students shared their intuitions and tips on healthy relationships with members of the sororities Chi Omega, Zeta Tau Alpha, and Zeta Phi Beta. The sisters participated in a graduate student-led workshop, “Marriage and Family Therapist Reveal: How to Save Your Relationship,” held in the University Center on Nov. 17 at 7 p.m.
The Magnolia, Cypress and Executive Dining Rooms in the U.C. were filled with girls eager to know exactly what makes relationships last.   The first-year graduate students in the Marriage and Family Therapy program presented information about how to improve relationships by improving conflict resolution skills. The workshop was broken down into four groups of 50, each of which discussed different aspects of these skills. The topics discussed included myths of successful relationships, signs that couples are in trouble, and lessons from the masters of happy relationships. The information provided in the workshops was supported by research in the field of Marriage and Family Therapy.
Jennifer Shute, associate professor of the Marriage and Family Therapy program, worked closely with the graduate students and sorority members to ensure that this event would be a success. The workshop was designed to improve relationships and resolve conflicts in the lives of busy and emotional college students.
“Student will walk away knowing how to improve relationships with not only significant others, but any relationship they are involved with, whether it is…with parents, siblings, roommates, or friends,” Shute said.  “Students will be able to identify areas in their relationships that could be…improved and/or be able to identify areas that are going well and [that] they should do more of, to keep their relationships strong.”
The graduate presenters discussed their topics for one hour, and then the groups were dismissed. Handouts with information were provided at each session.
“Since everyone will only get to attend one presentation, we highly encourage students to discuss what they learned afterward so that they can learn even more,” Shute said.
This workshop was only open to the members of the participating sororities, due to accommodation setbacks, but the hosts are hopeful that after this first workshop, they will be able to have more in the future and open them to the entire campus community.
“It is just a great way to promote the VSU Counseling Clinic and [it] gives the graduate students in the Marriage and Family Therapy department a great practice opportunity,” said Joanna Jenkins, President of Chi Omega.

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