Students get massages, pet service animals at stress-relief event


Zack Buster

Students got the chance to meet and pet service dogs from Pets on Wheels at the Stress Less event.

Zack Buster, Associate Editor

AACC’s Health and Wellness Center partnered with the Student Government Association to hold its first stress-relief event in two years.

massage therapy professor Heather Langley poses next to chalkboard advertising the stress less event
AACC’s Massage Therapy program offered free massages to students at the Stress Less Festival. Shown, massage therapy professor Heather Langley. (Zack Buster)

Health and Wellness Center nurse Stephanie Jenkins said the event, called the Stress Less Festival, helps students deal with stress and teaches them techniques to cope with it.

“Everyone has stress in their lives, whether it’s your job, your children, your spouse, your partner, whatever it is, we all need strategies … to deal with stress,” Jenkins, who ran the event in the Student Union cafeteria, said.

The Stress Less Festival included free shoulder, neck and arm massages from massage therapy students, as well as music, free food, do-it-yourself crafts, aromatherapy and a chance for students to spend time with service dogs.

First-year psychology student Fernando Alvarado said he enjoyed the crafts and the massage.

People pose in a themed frame behind a table of Latin of food.
Latinx Club treasurer Fatima Flores (right) and AACC’s student success and retention adviser, Samuel Cordero-Puchales, pose next to the food the Latinx Club members made for the event. (Zack Buster)

Alvarado added his favorite part of Stress Less Festival was creating his own aromatherapy scent.

“I made my own fragrance,” Alvarado said. “I called it Wepa. I feel like everyone has their own, personalized fragrances. They’re like, ‘Oh let me put this ingredient in or I’ll put this in.’ And it’s super personalized and cool.”

First-year general studies student Rayan Keita said the event was a good chance for students to meet each other and destress.

“It’s a great way to reach students and come together in the same place,” Keita said. “Many students struggle with various things or struggle throughout the semester and I think it’s a good way to reward them.”

Keita said his favorite part of the event was the free food.