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Five ways you can help prevent suicide

Darcy Haag Granello
October 02, 2018

One of the longest running programs in the nation, the Ohio State Suicide Prevention Program has trained more than 15,000 students, staff and faculty to recognize the signs of suicide

The Ohio State University Suicide Prevention Program is the largest campus suicide prevention program in the country. Our mission is to develop a comprehensive, effective, culturally responsive, technologically advanced and sustainable system of suicide prevention on all of the university’s six campuses.

The Suicide Prevention Program has been in continuous operation as a stand-alone office since 2006, making it one of the longest running campus suicide prevention programs in the nation. We work with more than 70 campus partners to help create a culture of care and support on campus.

Since its inception, the program has been housed in the College of Education and Human Ecology. The college is a strong partner to promote a campus-wide approach to fighting stigma and to teaching Ohio State faculty, staff and students how to recognize risk and warning signs for suicide in others and how to intervene.

How you can help

  1. Reach out to someone in distress. A recent national survey conducted on behalf of the National Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention shows that 94 percent of Americans believe suicide can be prevented. The same number would take action to help someone close to them who was thinking about suicide, the survey found. If you are concerned about someone, reach out and express your concern.

    Learn the risks and warning signs
  2. Schedule a REACH training for your program or department. REACH is a 90-minute suicide prevention gatekeeper training offered through the Ohio State Suicide Prevention Program.

    Submit a group training request
  3. Participate in a REACH training as an individual, if your program or department does not offer a REACH training.

    Register for a training this semester
  4. Make sure your syllabus contains a ‘mental health statement’ – here’s an example you could include:
    A recent American College Health Survey found stress, sleep problems, anxiety, depression, interpersonal concerns, death of a significant other, and alcohol use among the top ten health impediments to academic performance. Students experiencing personal problems or situational crises during the quarter are encouraged to contact the Ohio State Counseling and Consultation Service (614-292-5766; for assistance, support and advocacy. This service is free and confidential.
  5. Consider joining the Out of the Darkness Walk. On Sunday, Oct. 7, a walk to raise money for Suicide Prevention will take place the Alum Creek State Park. Consider creating or joining a team or making a donation. Don’t have a team? The Ohio State Counselor Education team always is looking for teammates in this important cause.

    Join the team

Ohio State Suicide Prevention Program philosophy

We believe:

  • Suicide is preventable. Reducing the stigma is critical to reduce suicide risk and promote a campus culture that encourages people to seek mental health services.
  • Active and engaged campus partners are essential to program success because suicide prevention is a shared campus responsibility.
  • Suicide prevention and mental health are critical components of students’ academic and overall success.
  • Suicide prevention programming should use, and contribute to, empirical research and should be grounded in evidence-based best practices.

Darcy Granello is professor of counselor education and director of The Ohio State University Suicide Prevention Program. She also is co-author of Suicide, Self-Injury and Violence in the Schools: Assessment, Prevention and Intervention Strategies and Suicide: An Essential Guide for Helping Professionals and Educators.


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