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ACT Based Preventive Programming on College Campuses ACBS Annual World Conference VIII June 22, 2010 Charlie Morse, MA, LMHC Director WPI Student Development.

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Presentation on theme: "ACT Based Preventive Programming on College Campuses ACBS Annual World Conference VIII June 22, 2010 Charlie Morse, MA, LMHC Director WPI Student Development."— Presentation transcript:

1 ACT Based Preventive Programming on College Campuses ACBS Annual World Conference VIII June 22, 2010 Charlie Morse, MA, LMHC Director WPI Student Development & Counseling

2 Identifying Need Areas Annual suicide rate on College campuses Annual suicide rate on College campuses 7.5 per 100,000 students (Silverman et al, 1997) 7.5 per 100,000 students (Silverman et al, 1997) ACHA-NCHA Findings ACHA-NCHA Findings In the last 12 months, have you:Fall 2000 Fall 2004 Fall 2007 Felt very sad Felt so depressed it was difficult to function Seriously considered attempting suicide Attempted Suicide Have you ever: Been diagnosed with depression

3 National Data on Students Considering Suicide 55% of students had experienced suicidal thoughts in their lifetime 55% of students had experienced suicidal thoughts in their lifetime 46% never talk to anyone else about thoughts or suicidal attempts 46% never talk to anyone else about thoughts or suicidal attempts Of those who talked to others, 67% first told a friend/peer Of those who talked to others, 67% first told a friend/peer Of those who talked to others, 52% found it helpful and 58% were advised to seek professional help Of those who talked to others, 52% found it helpful and 58% were advised to seek professional help Drum et al, 2009 National Research Consortium of Counseling Centers (June 2009 issue of Professional Psychology: Research and Practice)

4 WPI Student Support Network (SSN) Identifying and selecting student participants Identifying and selecting student participants to faculty and staff to faculty and staff General advertising/programming General advertising/programming Training SSN participants (6 week training) Training SSN participants (6 week training) Knowledge Knowledge Skills Skills Perspectives/Stigma reduction Perspectives/Stigma reduction Connection Connection

5 SSN Knowledge Areas Mental Health Concerns Mental Health Concerns Depression Depression Anxiety Anxiety Self-harm Self-harm Suicide Suicide Substance Abuse Substance Abuse Orientation to Available Resources Orientation to Available Resources

6 SSN Skill Areas Providing support in the moment Providing support in the moment Listening/empathy (the hammer) Listening/empathy (the hammer) Resist urges to fix Resist urges to fix Acceptance Acceptance Successfully connecting friends with help Successfully connecting friends with help Process orientation Process orientation Stages of change model Stages of change model Working with resistance Working with resistance

7 SSN Perspectives De-stigmatizing view of mental health De-stigmatizing view of mental health Normalization of struggles Normalization of struggles Functional vs. Diagnostic descriptions Functional vs. Diagnostic descriptions “It’s not us and them…it’s us and us” “It’s not us and them…it’s us and us” Enhancing Connection Enhancing Connection Networking within support system Networking within support system Helping the helpers Helping the helpers Enhancing a community of support Enhancing a community of support

8 ACT Elements of SSN Training Normalization of struggles Normalization of struggles Sharing data Sharing data Backpack metaphor Backpack metaphor Building self awareness/self acceptance Building self awareness/self acceptance Mindfulness exercises Mindfulness exercises Defining “Mental Health” Defining “Mental Health” Living one’s values and accepting one’s “stuff” Living one’s values and accepting one’s “stuff”

9 Evaluating SSN Outcomes (based on 168 student participants) Pre/post SIRI II results indicate significantly better crisis responding skills Pre/post SIRI II results indicate significantly better crisis responding skills Students demonstrated significant improvement in the following areas: Students demonstrated significant improvement in the following areas: Recognizing warning signs for suicide Recognizing warning signs for suicide Making appropriate referrals for support Making appropriate referrals for support Convincing someone to get help Convincing someone to get help Discussing suicide with others Discussing suicide with others Significantly Increased Student Outreach to the SDCC for consultation Significantly Increased Student Outreach to the SDCC for consultation

10 Empowering and Supporting Student Initiatives Specialized training offered in key areas Specialized training offered in key areas Supporting additional opportunities for student involvement Supporting additional opportunities for student involvement Programming Programming Marketing Marketing Feeds existing and new traditional Peer Ed Feeds existing and new traditional Peer Ed Active Minds at WPI Active Minds at WPI

11 More Information on WPI Student Support Network SSN Training Manual has been submitted for review and listing on Suicide Prevention Resource Center (SPRC) Best Practices Registry SSN Training Manual has been submitted for review and listing on Suicide Prevention Resource Center (SPRC) Best Practices Registry Manual is available to campuses who are considering implementing a peer networking program Manual is available to campuses who are considering implementing a peer networking program SSN will continue to evolve with SAMHSA funding to include faculty/staff as well as specialized trainings for international and under-represented students SSN will continue to evolve with SAMHSA funding to include faculty/staff as well as specialized trainings for international and under-represented students

12 WPI Student Development and Counseling Center Contact information Charles Morse, MA, LMHC Charles Morse, MA, LMHC Director Director Matt Barry, MA Matt Barry, MA Outreach Coordinator Outreach 157 West Street 157 West Street Worcester, Massachusetts Worcester, Massachusetts


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