You are not alone

4mGDQhD7_400x400By: Torkita Canty

The Jed and Clinton Health Matters Campus Program was designed to help promote the emotional wellbeing and mental health of students.

“Suicide is the second leading cause of death on college campuses, with substance abuse not too far behind,” stated Dr. Nance Roy, Clinical Director of the Jed Foundation.  According to a report published by the foundation, there are 21 million individuals that attend a post-secondary educational institution, and more than half of them have experienced “overwhelming anxiety” within the last year.

College students have numerous stressors that life throws their way, and they are unsure of how to cope which can lead to depression and self-harming. An anonymous PBSC student recently confessed that she used to be a cutter, “I can’t even look at myself in the mirror because I dislike the reflection that stares back at me.” There has to be a way to reach out to our fellow students and let them know that they are not alone.

Palm Beach State College has a Counseling Center located on the Lake Worth Campus (contact (561)868-3980 for their services). The free services provided consist of limited crisis interventions, mental health assessments, brief therapies, and community referrals. Students can schedule an appointment to meet with a counselor at their home campus. There are also career centers located on each campus, and by visiting one, students can receive contact numbers for hotlines that address matters in relation to substance abuse, depression, and suicidal thoughts.

Belle Glade career center and academic advisor Tracey Wheeler stated that there should be one consistent faculty member that is specialized just for this area. “Students need to know that they are not alone,” she stated.  With reality setting in, there will be persons that are in need of a listening ear and guidance.