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Student Mental Health Activist to Speak September 10

From Candice Wiggum, Interim Dean of Students: Alison Malmon, founder of the student organization Active Minds and chosen as a Washingtonian of the Year for 2007, will be speaking at Keene State College on Wednesday, September 10, at 7 p.m., in the Mountain View Room at the Student Center. Faculty, staff, students, and community members are invited to attend. The event is free.

Alison was a first-year student at the University of Pennsylvania when her brother, Brian, a senior at Columbia, took his own life. “He was ashamed and scared,” his sister says. “His friends didn’t know what to do or say. I wanted to let people know that they weren’t alone, that resources are available, that it’s okay to ask.”

Finding no college-based mental-health organizations, Malmon started one at the University of Pennsylvania. Three students came to the first meeting, but 85 attended a coffeehouse to raise funds and awareness. A friend of Malmon’s started a second chapter at Georgetown.

Active Minds is the nation’s only peer-to-peer organization dedicated to raising awareness about mental health among college students. The organization serves as the young adult voice in mental health advocacy on more than 100 college campuses nationwide. Each student group’s mission is to:

• Increase awareness of mental health issues
• Provide information and resources regarding mental health and mental illness
• Encourage students to seek help as soon as it is needed
• Serve as liaison between students and the mental health community.

Keene State College is starting its own student chapter this year. Interested students should contact

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