Proposal: Educational cartoon featuring sample Emory student, discussing accessibility of Emory's counseling center, stigma against depression, resources, and plans for social action.
Slide 1: This is Sam, a student at Emory University. Sam is feeling depressed.
Slide 2: "School is so hard... I'm not good enough to succeed... I don't think I want to be here anymore".
Slide 3: A friend finds Sam and suggests that he goes to seek help. "Sam, I'm concerned about you. I think you need to go to the counseling center".
Slide 4: Sam reluctantly agrees and goes to the counseling center.
Slide 5: After a semester's worth of sessions, Sam feels better, but wants to continue going to the counseling center to continue his treatment. However, after a semester, he needs a referral to continue his treatment. "I can't afford this... And I don't have a car to get off campus... How can I continue my treatment?"
Slide 6: Sam asks his friends if they've gone to the counseling center and if they've gotten referrals. "Where even is the counseling center?" "Can't you just get over it? Things will get better, you'll see."
"Why do you need a referral? Can't you just continue treatment there?
Slide 7: Clearly, there is a lack of knowledge on Emory's campus about the resources available at the counseling center, and there is also a stigma against depression.
Slide 8: 51% of a sample of Emory students agree that there is a stigma against mental illnesses like depression and anxiety.
Slide 9: [Quotes from students] "It's seen as taboo"; "It's something that people think one can just shake it off and get better"; "It's hard to explain to students and teachers"; "It's perceived as weak to admit that your brain may work a little differently".
Slide 10: 68% of the same sample also said that they had never used the counseling center. While many of these responses included students who felt they had no need to use the counseling center, other responses included that "It's embarrassing", "I've heard it's bad", "It's inconvenient", "I was told they could only refer me to an outside therapist". Not only is some of this information incorrect, it's also disheartening.
Slide 11: When looking at the referral process, some students also thought that the counseling center should offer free appointments for a year rather than just a semester, and that maybe they should follow through and make sure that the person actually goes to seek outside help instead of just sending patients on their way.
Slide 12: Let's make Emory students more aware and informed about what resources are available and unavailable to them.
Slide 13: And maybe argue for long-term counseling at CAPS? Or at least a better follow-up process?
Slide 14: Join the movement and learn more. www.supportfordepression.weebly.com