Each year, Ohio State Lima Counseling Services hosts National Depression Screening Day on our campus. 2015 will mark the 7th year!
Some years we have screened as few as 12 students. Some years, as many as 280! Regardless of the number of students screened, we feel strongly about continuing the tradition every year. Why?
Many college students struggle, some with day-to-day stresses and difficulties, others with mental illness, and still others with major life changes or traumatic events. National Depression Screening Day is one avenue for OSU Lima students to know that help is available and where to find it. Once students show up to NDSD, they know where the Counseling Services office is if they need it (now or in the future); and hopefully see that it’s a welcoming environment (and not at all scary).
When students participate in NDSD, they have the choice to complete the checklist in anyway they wish. Sometimes this checklist form is an easier way to communicate that things are not going well. Sometimes we don’t even realize how much we are struggling until we’re asked these specific questions. The checklist often informs people that maybe some help would be good.
But one of the largest reasons we do NDSD is to raise awareness of mental health and to reduce the stigma around seeking help. We typically have over 200 students participate in this event each fall. That many people gathered in the lobby of Galvin Hall makes a commotion – and we hope that every student on campus sees this and realizes that coming to Counseling Services just isn’t that big of a deal. We hope that it helps to dispel the myth that therapy is only for people who are “crazy.” We hope that students learn a little bit more about maintaining their own mental health and that it’s ok to ask for help. We pass out lots of information to students who come through NDSD screenings and we hope that some of that informs their own decisions about attending to their mental health and being aware of how their friends and family may be feeling.
If National Depression Screening Day on the Ohio State Lima campus
- helps one student ask for help who might not have done so on his/her own, or
- intervenes in one student’s thoughts of harming him/herself, or
- causes one student to reconsider what it means for him/her or others to come to therapy, or
- gives one student the information or resources needed to help a friend who is struggling or in crisis …
then we have served our purpose.
For all these reasons, we feel passionately about continuing to host this event each and every year on this campus. We hope to see you this year!
National Depression Screening Day 2015
Thursday, Oct 8