Creating Active Minds on College Campuses


Creating Active Minds on College Campuses

With this being the big “back to school” month AND the fact that the Austin area is home to a robust crop of graduate mental health degree programs, I thought I’d kick off the semester with an eye-opener that affects us all: did you know that around 1,100 college students—our friends, family, and future—die by suicide each year?  And did you know that your creative contributions can help prevent these tragedies, regardless of whether you’re currently attending a university or you’ve completely paid off your student loans?


Welcome to Active Minds!  This nationwide organization supports students in transforming the way college campus culture views mental health issues.  How does Active Minds do this?  By attracting people who want to be the change they wish to see in the world and providing them with the materials needed to create a new vision of helpfulness and hopefulness through advocacy and outreach.


Have an idea for creating this new vision, or interested in supporting someone else’s creative ideas?  If you’re a student, you can bring this vision to fruition by becoming involved in a chapter.  Here’s the catch: the Austin area isn’t stepping up to the plate when it comes to Active Minds chapters!  I had to dig around for the info, but the University of Texas at Austin actually does have a chapter and a website to boot.  However, St. Ed’s and Texas State are MIA!  Hilltoppers and Bobcats, are you up for the challenge of creating a chapter—a work of art that’s much greater than the sum of its parts?  Your fellow students and your campus culture need your creative genius!


And if you’re no longer a student, your creative genius is needed as well.  Becoming a friend of Active Minds comes with its own perks and provides you with opportunities to let your creative juices flow as a volunteer for awareness-raising/educational events and as a resource for students—some of whom will go on to become mental health professionals themselves.  If you’ve been looking for a way to give back, this just might be the gift that keeps on giving.  That’s a work of art in and of itself.


Think about what creating Active Minds on college campuses could do for the community around you.  Author Paolo Coelho said it best: “Everybody has a creative potential and from the moment you can express this creative potential, you can start changing the world.”


With appreciation for the important work you do,

Megan August 2013

About the Image on This Page

This is a thumbnail of Lion Statue, which was released into the public domain by its creator, Rosendahl. Click here for more information.