An open letter to Flyer News

Dear Flyer News,

It was with interest that I read on March 21, 2017 the opinion piece titled: Mental Health Not a Priority for UD Administration or Colleges Nationwide by Nate Sikora.

Attending a university can certainly create stresses and demands upon a student, often coming from many directions. Usually it is these challenges that help a student to grow by building confidence and resilience. Of course, there are times when issues arise that are distressing and a student may need the assistance of others to cope effectively.

The staff in the Division of Student Development cares deeply about all students who are experiencing distress or are in crisis. We support students through robust programming, and with the care and compassion called for by our Catholic, Marianist values.

Student Development offers a variety of services to students including the Counseling Center, Health Center, a case manager in the Dean of Students office, Housing & Residence Life, Center for Alcohol and Other Drug Resources and Education, and the leadership of CARE- a team of University faculty and staff designed to support students in need. In addition, Campus Ministry provides pastoral support for students. A great deal of resources including time, money, energy, and planning are a part of this, in an effort to provide both prevention and intervention services.

Resources to assist student mental health and personal development have significantly grown over the years. Examples include a new internship program in the counseling center that added two therapists, expansion of psychiatric hours, and an increase in prevention programming. One of the priorities of Student Development and others within the University is the health (both mental and physical) and safety of all our students. It was with this in mind that over two years ago a Mental Health Promotion and Suicide Prevention work group, consisting of students, faculty, and staff, was created. Recommendations from this group are in the process of being implemented through a three-year plan.

If students have questions or concerns about their health (both mental and physical) or the University’s programs to support students, we invite them to contact the Counseling Center (937-229-3141) or the Dean of Students Office (937-229-1212).

Sincerely,

Bill Fischer Vice President for Student Development

Photo Courtesy of ncbhs.org