Anne Cowardin-Bach, Ph.D, says she’s seen an increase this fall in students coming to Wardenburg with suicidal thoughts.
“It’s surprisingly busy,” said Cowardin-Bach, a psychologist and certified group psychotherapist director of Wardenburg Student Health Center. “The number of attempts and successes has stayed consistent with past years, but more distressed students is cause for concern.”
College students are faced with daily stresses and pressures. Because of these problems, students sometimes make decisions that are life-threatening.
For professional help, students should go to a mental health office such as Counseling and Psychological Services, Victim Assistance, Wardenburg Psychological Health and Psychiatry,or Multicultural Affairs.
Counseling and Psychological Services in Willard 134: (303) 492-676
Wardenburg Psychological Health and Psychiatry Services located on the first floor of Wardenburg: (303) 492-5654
Victim Assistance located in 217-219 Willard Hall: (303) 492-8855
MESA 24-hour victim advocate hotline: (303) 443-7300
Boulder County Mental Health – Psychiatric Emergency Line (24 hours): (303) 447-1665
If it’s after-hours students can always call the Helpline (CU Peer Crisis and Referral Service): (303) 492-1000
“Get professional help and call a family member if it feels like the right thing,” Cowardin-Bach said. “Students should gather a support system and let people know.”
Amy Robertson, CU’s suicide prevention coordinator for Counseling and Psychological Services, argues that college is beneficial to the mental health of young people.
“Suicide rates actually double once students leave college,” Robertson said. “College is a very good thing for students.”
At CU there are normally four to five suicides a year – this is more than the normal average. Nationally speaking, there are 7.5 suicides for every 100,000 students.
Robertson recommends that friends should reach out and express their concerns if a friend is considering suicide.
“Suicide is based on emotional distress and looking for ways to cope with pain,” Robertson said. “Friends should ask directly ‘have you thought of suicide?'”
Robertson wants students to know that there are many options available. Talking and getting others involved is vital.
Other services at CU help with the community that has been affected by traumatic events such as suicide.
Mary Friedrichs, a licensed clinical social worker, is the director for the Office of Victim Assistance.
“Victim Assistance provides information, advocacy, and counseling,” Friedrichs said.
She added that they provide response services for the community who has been impacted. Victim Assistance will pick up a police report and will be informed if there is a suicide on campus.
Friedrichs then reaches out to whoever was impacted. If a student was harmed, she would reach out to the student’s roommates and friends. If it was a faculty member, she would reach out to the people he or she worked with.
Besides dealing with suicides Victim Assistance deals with biased motivated acts, sex assaults, serious accidents and any serious offences that call for grief work or help.
Contact Campus Press Staff Writer Jennifer Jacobs at email@example.com