There is no doubt that mental health is an important topic to talk about openly in today’s society. Mercyhurst students have created the Active Minds club that allows open discussion about mental health and ways to cope with anxiety and depression.
“I chose to continue Active Minds because mental health awareness is so important among college campuses. In addition to that, the stigma with mental health needs to be broken. I have been a mental health advocate ever since I was 13 years old, and I want to continue to spread awareness and get people to talk about mental health in a stigma free environment,” president and senior Biology major Hayley Ault said.
Ault is not the only one running this club. The executive board is made up by Carlena Bressanelli (vice president), Maya Poletto (secretary), Chelsie Crate (treasurer) and Gianna O’Brian (social media manager). Active Minds is actually a national non-profit organization and Mercyhurst has a chapter within it. One of their main goals is to start conversations about mental health.
They have chapters on more than 700 campuses worldwide. Active Minds participates in many school events, such as the Mocktail competition on Oct 30. They also create many events and activities during their meetings.
“At our meetings, we talk about general upcoming events, usually incorporate a craft or fun activity that is stress relieving, and then do what is known as the ‘Topic of the Day’ in which a mental health topic is discussed for a brief period of time. This is important and new to the club because we want the members to engage in the topic and learn about the topic as well,” Ault said.
The club does not stray away from difficult topics either. “Some of the topics include; bullying, how to help out a friend, and many more to come,” Ault said.
Meetings for the club are either on Monday, Wednesdays or Fridays from 3:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. If you are interested in joining Active Minds and want to make a difference on campus by spreading awareness, email the officers or contact the advisor, Nicole JohnDanzell Ph.D. You can also follow them on Instagram @mu_activeminds and like them on Facebook at Mercyhurst Active Minds. For more information on the organization as a whole visit activeminds.org.