What: Campus Mental Health and Suicide Prevention Conference: Creating a Competent Community

When: Thursday, May 28 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Where: Monmouth University, Anacon Hall, 400 Cedar Avenue, West Long Branch, N.J.

Sponsored by: Promoting Wellness and Resiliency on Campus Initiative at Monmouth University (PWR), Barnabas Health, Carrier Clinic, and the Monmouth County Mental Health Association

Mental health issues are prevalent on college campuses. One in four young adults between the ages of 18 and 24 have a diagnosable mental illness, with suicide being the second leading cause of death for this age group, resulting in a greater number of college students seeking support on campus and in the community. Mental health experts will discuss this important topic and the best practices in campus health and suicide prevention, as well as present workshops in prevention, intervention, and postvention at “Campus Mental Health and Suicide Prevention Conference: Creating a Competent Community,” at Monmouth University on May 28. The conference will be held in Anacon Hall from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Confirmed speakers include two panelists from the Jed Foundation: Medical Director Victor Schwartz, M.D., and Clinical Manager Jenna Scott, Psy.D., who will be presenting with colleagues from Monmouth University. The Jed Foundation is a best practices national organization that focuses on campus mental health and suicide prevention. Monmouth University is a recipient of the JED Campus Seal for outstanding, holistic, and comprehensive mental health services for students. In addition, Adam Lesser, Deputy Director for the Center for Suicide Risk Assessment, New York State Psychiatric Institute, will be presenting suicide risk assessment and safety planning techniques to college/university clinicians.

“We are very excited about this opportunity to bring so many colleagues from colleges and universities in the State to share our experience in mental health awareness and suicide prevention at Monmouth University and to encourage other institutions to engage in more proactive prevention/education/awareness efforts on their campus. By bringing these schools together, we hope to create a learning collaborative that will continue the strides that have taken place on many campuses in the last few years in this area,” said Franca Mancini, Ph.D., Director of Counseling and Psychological Services at Monmouth University.

The Conference is an initiative coordinated through a $300,000 SAMHSA (Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration} grant that was awarded to Monmouth University in 2012 through the Garrett Lee Smith Memorial Act. Co-sponsors of the conference include Barnabas Health, Carrier Clinic, and the Monmouth County Mental Health Association. For more information, visit www.monmouth.edu/pwr, or contact one of the co-directors of the PWR initiative, Michelle Scott, Ph.D. at mscott@monmouth.edu or Franca Mancini, Ph.D. at mancini@monmouth.edu.