#hopestrongeagles Suicide Prevention Program
PI: Christina Mick, Counseling Center
Awarded by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration Division of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
The Tennessee Tech University Counseling Center in Cookeville, Tenn., received a three-year $278,466 campus suicide prevention grant from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMSHA) Division of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. This funding will go toward initiating the “#hopestrongeagles” Suicide Prevention Program, which will be available to any TTU student who needs the program’s services, and was developed by Christina Mick, Ed.D. and Assistant Director of Clinical Services at the Counseling Center. Mick worked diligently with the assistance of the TTU Office of Research to acquire the funding for this very competitive grant. The program officially kicked off October 1 on the TTU campus.
“Wellness and prevention are of the upmost utmost importance to academic success,” Mick said. “Our program #hopestrongeagles is specific to preventing a major public health problem that is growing across the United States and among our college students.”
According to the Jed Foundation, suicide is the second leading cause of death for college students, and half of all college students say they have had suicidal thoughts at some point. Half of college students have also said that they’ve been so depressed they couldn’t function at some point during the last school year ( www.halfofus.com). According to the SAMSHA, on average, one person in the U.S. in this age range dies by suicide every two hours.
Prior to earning this grant, the TTU Counseling Center had already been dedicated to suicide prevention across campus. Since 2012, Mick has trained more than 1,000 faculty, staff and students in the Question, Persuade, Refer Suicide Prevention method.
Mick’s dedication to suicide prevention is also recognized off campus. Last fall, the Governor’s Council for Armed Forces, veterans, and their families selected her to serve as one of five delegates from Tennessee at the SAMSHA Suicide Prevention Implementation Academy held September 15-17, 2014, in Bethesda, Maryland. This academy brought delegates from across the nation to focus on strategic planning and implementation of best practices and to outline success indicators for service members, veterans, and their families. Mick’s contributions focused on suicide prevention for service members, veterans, and families in the academic, research, and university concentration areas.
In addition, Mick met with Rear Admiral Joan Hunter, Assistant Joint Surgeon for the National Guard Bureau on January 15, 2015. Admiral Hunter visited the TN Army National Guard to discuss building an integrated psychological health model for our National Guard Soldiers, airmen, and their families. Mick will be involved in implementing the Question, Persuade, Refer Suicide Prevention model for service members, veterans, and their families.
For more information about this grant or to schedule a Question, Persuade, Refer Suicide Prevention training, please contact Mick at (931) 372-3331. To contact the Counseling Center, please visit the website at www.tntech.edu/studentaffairs/counsel/ or call (931) 372-3331.