Mental health taken seriously at LCC
By Jayden Hewitt
September is Suicide Prevention Awareness Month. With that, LCC is showing it takes it mental health very seriously.
On Tuesday, Sept. 27 from 12:10 to 1:30 p.m., LCC is hosting an event called “Mental Health is Human Health.” This event is being organized by Academic and Arts Outreach Coordinator Melissa Kaplan and LCC Counseling Services, and can be accessed via WebEx.
“Mental Health is Human Health” is a way for students to express themselves and get the help they, or someone they may know, needs,” Kaplan explained.
“It’s designed to offer support to people who are struggling with mental health issues,” Kaplan said. “There’s a lot of different ways to receive the messages and understand the issues, and have access to whatever resources are needed.”
Kaplan also mentioned that there is a stigma around mental illness. Kaplan said she and her team are trying to reduce this stigma, and make resources more available.
“There’s long been this feeling that there’s something wrong with you; that it’s shameful.” Kaplan said.
A video called “Please Stay: A Call for Suicide and Depression Awareness” will be shown by Kaplan. It is about 30 minutes long.
The event will feature an introduction from Counselor Louise Rabidoux, and an opportunity to creatively reflect with LCC Professor Barb Clauer through a group poetry activity.
LCC student Trevor Yemc is a fan of LCC’s mental health efforts for students and anyone who needs help.
“I think it’s a great thing that LCC is taking mental health seriously for their students, compared to most outreach places,” Yemc said. “So yes, I think it’s great for the community, and just everything within to have a place like LCC to do this, and be involved in their own students’ mental health.”
The “Please Stay” program, as well as Suicide Prevention Awareness Month, was acknowledged at the Sept. 19 LCC Board of Trustees meeting.
“Please Stay” is a multidisciplinary arts program centered on using art to recognize the need for help.
LCC President Dr. Steve Robinson was presented with the Telly Award on behalf of the college, an award the “Please Stay” program earned. The Telly Award recognizes excellence across all media in all types of platforms, “Please Stay” was given a bronze in social impact.
LCC Trustee Samantha Vaive also made a moving speech during the meeting, mentioning her experiences with people she’s known who have struggled with mental health issues, and suicide.