One suicide is too many, let alone more than 1,000 on college campuses per year.
According to Emory University’s program Emory Cares 4 U, suicide is the third-leading cause of death for those between the ages fifteen and twenty-four.
To raise awareness, the Fresno State Student Health and Counseling Center displayed green ribbons and suicide statistic boards last week in Memorial Plaza. The ribbons began at the Memorial Fountain.
Tuesday, Sept. 6, a blackboard at Memorial Fountain was put up with the message “Spread Positivity.” Students were encouraged to write encouraging messages.
Their messages included: “Always keep your head up,” “Keep your friends close for help,” “This world needs you” and “Face your problems head on, you got this.”
On Thursday, Sept. 8, students were able to write one word of encouragement on a blackboard by the fountain. Words such as, “Smile,” “Courage,” “Talk” and “Love” were expressed. The blackboard had the phrase: “The conversation begins with one word.” The one word prompt was to make students more comfortable talking about suicide prevention with the spark of one word.
Although students were apprehensive to discuss suicide awareness at first, they were happy to sign their words of positivity to spread love throughout the campus.
Students said they wanted their colleagues to know they are never alone.
Discussing the topic of suicide is the first step to creating a healthy dialogue, according to Emory Cares 4 U.
Suicide Prevention Week was observed from Sept. 5 through Sept. 11.