Written for The Argo by Erin Kee
On Saturday, March 27th, Active Minds and the Master of Social Work Alliance collaborated with organizer and Stockton graduate student Erin Sochocky to have a virtual screening of the film My Ascension with a subsequent Q&A panel.
The film describes the story of Emma Beniot, an attempt survivor and mental health advocate, on her road to physical and mental recovery. In the documentary, Beniot brings light to organizations and groups that can offer help to those struggling with their mental health. The film also features one-on-one interviews and personal anecdotes from the families of those who lost their battles with mental illness.
The Q&A panel presented after the film featured Greg Dicharry, the director and producer of My Ascension; Dr. Lorretta Mooney, a professor of the graduate course Suicide Assessment & Intervention; Morgan Pfau, co-president of Active Minds; Nate Morell, the assistant Director of Counseling Services; and Emma Beniot. Prioritizing and destigmatizing mental health were the two major discussions of the panel.
“We all know the importance of our physical health, but it is just as important to take the time for your mental health,” said Mooney.
The panel continued the discussion of the importance of mental health in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. According to the CDC, young adults, minorities, and essential workers have disproportionately worsened mental health, advanced substance use, and heightened levels of suicidal idealization due to the conditions of the pandemic. Suicide is also the second leading cause of death among college age students. The panel suggested activities like going outside or setting aside time for self care for those who have been struggling to keep their mental health from declining during quarantine.
For students who are struggling with mental health, Stockton University offers virtual and in-person support services.
The Counseling Center is located at the Stockton Wellness Center Room J-204
Monday – Friday , 9:00am-5:00 pm, (609) 652-4722 , firstname.lastname@example.org