Student mental health is a growing issue on college campuses and has become more so since the pandemic started. The national Healthy Minds Study (HSM) shows that nearly seven million college students meet criteria for a clinically significant mental health problem. In April 2021, a survey by the American Council on Education reported 73 percent of college presidents identify mental health as a pressing issue.
Attitudes in Reverse is grateful to have been invited to various colleges and universities this year, most recently to Hudson County Community College and Mercer County Community College.
AIR also will be visiting The College of New Jersey in December 2021.
AIR Visits the College of New Jersey
“We brought Attitudes in Reverse to our campus for Welcome Week in August. This five-day program for our new students has over 100 mandatory and optional sessions, and so many of them are nervous and anxious about starting college, in addition to missing their pets from home! The line to spend a few minutes with the AIR dogs and teams wrapped around the entire second floor of our student center and is one of our most popular events every year. I can’t thank AIR enough for their partnership, and I can’t wait to bring them back this month to provide a little stress relief during finals.”
The College of New Jersey
Director, Office of Student Transitions
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AIR Brings In Their Shoes to Mercer County Community College
“The AIR In Their Shoes display is a favorite for both students and staff at Mercer County Community College because it sends such a powerful message: You never know who around you is suffering. The clear takeaway is to be kind to all and to be supportive of those struggling, without judgment. In these uncertain times, an attitude of kindness and empathy is more important than ever. The increased need for mental health resources, especially after almost two years of pandemic stress and upheaval, is apparent. Last but not least: the therapy dogs!!! They are a real treat, and provide much needed comfort, especially after seeing such a moving exhibit.”
Mercer County Community College
Events Coordinator, Student Life and Leadership
AIR Brings In Their Shoes to Hudson County Community College
“This year, Attitudes in Reverse has displayed their In their Shoe Exhibition at our college for a suicide prevention event. Due to the pandemic, we have not had an in-person event. We were so glad that this was our opening event for our students, staff, and faculty. All who attended shared how meaningful it was: reading the shoes, hearing the speakers share their stories. Assemblywoman Annette Chaparro, shared her story, which was also important because it was a great way to show our students that anyone and everyone can be impacted by mental health.
As a therapist, I know that suicide prevention events can be emotionally triggering. The Attitudes in Reverse team were supportive and provided a safe place for people to feel vulnerable and safe. Having the support dogs at the event was also very helpful. Next year, we hope to have another prevention event with Attitudes in Reverse.”
Doreen Marie Pontius, L.C.S.W.
Hudson County Community College
Associate Director Counseling & Wellness