Sacred Heart University joins program to help students with mental health
Colleges and universities in Connecticut are putting an emphasis on the importance of mental health.
Connecticut State Colleges & Universities joined JED Campus, a national program that helps schools evaluate their mental health and suicide prevention programs.
The importance of mental health is in the spotlight, Gov. Ned Lamont says.
"Mental health is just one more of those long COVID symptoms that we're going to make sure we deal with head-on," Lamont says.
Ethan Fields, a senior manager for higher education program outreach and promotion at the JED Foundation, works to create advocacy and reduce stigma surrounding suicide prevention.
He says COVID-19 has impacted the mental health of all people and that suicide is the second leading cause of death for the young population.
Twelve community colleges, four state universities and a couple of private universities, including Sacred Heart University, will all be part of JED Campus.
The collaborative was made possible through private funding and the federal COVID-19 relief funds.
JED campus has a four-year and 18-month program.
"This is a prevention framework, so the campuses are coming to us ready to get deep in looking at their systems and levels of support to be able to strengthen them for the future," Fields says.
They are helping to create systemic and sustainable change for college students.