Kennesaw State expands mental health resources for students
KENNESAW, Ga. (Feb 16, 2021) — Building on its longstanding commitment to providing a healthy and supportive learning environment, Kennesaw State University is expanding the mental health services and resources available to students.
Kennesaw State has launched Wellbeing@KSU, a comprehensive mental health wellbeing initiative that includes services such as a 24/7/365 mental health support line for in-the-moment support and linkages to next steps, regardless of the time of day or the caller’s location; wellness peer mentors; and expanded access to psychiatric assessments. Wellbeing@KSU builds on Kennesaw State’s existing resources offered through Student Health Services, Health Promotion and Wellness, Counseling and Psychological Services, Sports and Recreation, and the Center for Young Adult Addiction and Recovery.
KSU’s efforts are part of a statewide initiative, supported by Governor’s Emergency Education Relief funding amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, to enhance mental health and student support services within the University System of Georgia. The USG and Kennesaw State are partnering with two organizations dedicated to health and wellbeing: Christie Campus Health, which expands access to behavioral health resources for students on and off campus, and the Jed Campus program, which is guiding KSU through a strategic planning process to build on existing student mental health, substance misuse and suicide prevention efforts.
“The mental health of our students always has been a priority at KSU, and it never has been more important than during these unique and challenging times,” said Teresa Johnston, assistant vice president for student affairs. “While we have seen remarkable resilience from our students during the pandemic, we are keenly aware that feeling alone or separated from their university community can heighten any stress, anxiety or depression a college student is experiencing.”
As part of Wellbeing@KSU, students have access to these new services at no additional cost:
- A 24/7, 365-days-a-year mental health support line: 470-578-6600
- Wellness peer mentors to provide support and coordinate referrals
- An online wellness hub with educational content, self-help tools and resource links
- Expanded mental health training for faculty, staff and students
Those are in addition to existing services such as telehealth or in-person treatment sessions with licensed mental health clinicians and comprehensive campus programming related to wellbeing. Also, additional psychiatric supports have been expanded through Christie Campus Health, providing students more availability to receive assessment and medication management.
KSU’s Mental Health Initiatives Project Team, composed of representatives from departments and units throughout the University, has been meeting for the past several months to develop and implement the initiatives. Along with the new services through Christie Campus Health’s Wellbeing@KSU program, the effort includes long-term plans through the strategic planning process with the Jed Foundation.
“Kennesaw State University believes that supporting the mental health of our students is a campus-wide responsibility,” Johnston said. “Mental health on college campuses is a public health priority and, more than ever, we need to look out for each other. We are committed to providing a number of options for meeting students’ needs and eliminating any barriers to them.”
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A leader in innovative teaching and learning, Kennesaw State University offers undergraduate, graduate and doctoral degrees to its more than 41,000 students. With 11 colleges on two metro Atlanta campuses, Kennesaw State is a member of the University System of Georgia and the second-largest university in the state. The university’s vibrant campus culture, diverse population, strong global ties and entrepreneurial spirit draw students from throughout the region and from 126 countries across the globe. Kennesaw State is a Carnegie-designated doctoral research institution (R2), placing it among an elite group of only 6 percent of U.S. colleges and universities with an R1 or R2 status. For more information, visit kennesaw.edu.