Suicide has become unfortunately prevalent in settings of high stress and pressure. College communities alone see an increasing number of cases each year. There are more than 1,000 suicides on college campuses per year and it is estimated that one in ten college students has made a plan for suicide. It has become an uncomfortable and taboo topic, making it difficult for those who need help to get it. Suicide follows every campus across the states and New Paltz is no exception.
When the loss of a friend last year hit the student body particularly hard, some of us gathered to make a difference. This is how the Association for Suicide Awareness and Prevention at New Paltz was formed. Our mission is to encourage a discussion on mental health and suicide while connecting students with resources. With this in mind ASAP is hosting events in hopes of generating dialogue on the taboo topic of suicide.
We are bringing Kevin Briggs, a retired ex-sergeant, to the school to speak about suicide prevention and mental health. He is responsible for talking upwards of 200 people off of the Golden Gate Bridge and now dedicates his time to giving talks around the country. He will be giving a talk tailored to the student body on Tuesday, April 4 in Lecture Center 100. This is event is for the entire college as well as the residents of New Paltz. We hope to inform people on an overlooked issue and open discussion to make a change for those who need it.