LeMoyne-Owen College is a historically black college (HBCU) that is situated on a beautifully landscaped campus in Memphis, Tennessee. The student body is comprised primarily of African American students who are considered “high risk'” for behavior and mental health problems,including those associated with suicide and suicidal behavior. Consistent with its mission of providing a transformative experience educating students for urban-focused leadership,scholarship, service, and professional careers, LeMoyne-Owen College is keenly interested in promoting students’ mental health and in preventing campus suicides.
To this end, it proposes to implement the Magicians STEPS (Suicide Training, Education, and Prevention Services)Project, a comprehensive and coordinated campus suicide prevention initiative. The program centers around (1) Conducting and institutional assessment of campus needs, policies and resources regarding suicide, suicide prevention and other mental/behavioral health concerns impacting students’ progress and success; (2) Educating students, faculty, staff and the broader college community (i.e., parents, families) about suicide, mental and behavioral health problems (e.g., depression and substance abuse) associated with suicide as well as prevention and intervention resources and services available within LeMoyne-Owen’s community to address these problems; (3) Developing and implementing training in the assessment, diagnosis, and treatment of individuals suffering with behavioral/mental health problems (e.g., suicidal ideation, depression) for various segments of the campus, including students enrolled in “helping professions” such as social work; and ( 4) Evaluating the efficacy of the various educational and training activities, programs and services that will be offered as part of this initiative, in promoting mental health and preventing suicide on LeMoyne-Owen’s campus.