Campus-wide training highlights practical ways to provide support and resources to those struggling
According to National Alliance on Mental Illnesssuicide is the second leading cause of death in the United States among people between the ages of 10 and 43.
During September, National Suicide Prevention Awareness Monthand throughout the year, San Diego City College Student Mental Health works to reduce the stigma around suicide.
The city’s Student Mental Health Service and Active Minds Chapter are sponsoring campus-wide suicide prevention training on September 20 in room MS-162. The training will be presented in Spanish from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. and in English from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m.
The training is open to all students, teachers and staff. Staff can receive flex credits and all participants will receive a certificate of completion and be eligible to win various prizes.
The event, presented by San Diego Youth Services HERE now and anti-BIAS Program Manager Amy Chavez will focus on the practical application of tools and resources to help prevent suicide.
Many people on college campuses don’t know how to get help, with 55% of students surveyed by Active Minds in April 2020 saying they would not know where to go if they or someone they knew needed professional mental health services immediately.
At City, professional mental health services are free for all students and appointments are available; However, students often underuse these services due to help-seeking stigma, according to Abigail Weisman, student mental health counselor and peer education program counselor.
“We truly believe that your physical and mental health are linked,” Weisman said. “We’re really excited to have this on-campus health center where people can come in and be seen from both sides of the house, and it’s free and confidential.”
In a 2020 Active Minds Survey, 39% of college students said they had experienced a significant mental health issue and 67% of young adults said they had told a friend they were having difficulty before telling someone. another.
If you’re struggling or know someone who is, Weisman explained, talking about it can be the best first step to better mental health.
“You don’t have to be a mental health professional or have formal training to help someone in need and talking about it is the best way to intervene,” Weisman said.
We hesitate, which is completely normal and natural, but I think it perpetuates the problem and the silence that surrounds it, and it really is the most dangerous thing of all, is feeling alone.
There are many common misconceptions about the subject of suicide, explained Nadia Sayeh, mental health counselor and educational consultant for Active Minds. However, educating ourselves as a campus community is one of the best ways to support ourselves and each other, she continued.
“I think information is key and knowledge is power,” Sayeh said. “I would like our participants to understand the warning signs of suicide, to know that it is okay to talk about suicide and that it is not uncommon to have suicidal thoughts. “
The transition to on-campus learning in the fall semester has caused many students across the city to report additional stress and anxiety, clinical mental health counselor Diana Hernandez said. However, to address personal mental health issues or become an advocate for mental health awareness, there are several opportunities at City, Hernandez explained.
In addition to free mental and physical health care services, students in the city can join clubs like active mindsdownload the mental wellness app nod to fight loneliness, attend weekly workshops and support groups and join the Peer educator program.
To stay up to date with the latest Mental Health Department news, resources and events, sign up for The Mindful City Newsletterand follow @sdcitymentalhealth and @active_minds_sdcitycollege on Instagram.
To make an appointment with Student Mental Health click here or call (619) 388-3055.
To download the Nod app, scan the QR code.
Suicide Lifeline: If you or someone you know is struggling with suicidal thoughts, you can call US National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 988 any time of the day or night, text COURAGE to the crisis text line at 741-741 or chatting on the internet.