Depression screening provides answers
National Depression Screening Day is an opportunity for students to learn more about why they might be feeling the way they do, according to Daniel O’Donnell, a doctoral psychology intern for the Counseling and Testing Center.
“A national organization coordinates this around the country on college campuses,” O’Donnell said. “It’s an opportunity for students to stop by who might wonder what’s going on with them, take a brief screening and sit down with a counselor and get feedback.”
This year, National Depression Screening Day will be Oct. 11.
Every other year, the Counseling and Testing Center sponsors a campus-wide survey that evaluates depression in students. O’Donnell said the most recent data from 2011 showed that 47 percent of students felt helpless, more than 89 percent felt overwhelmed, 60 percent felt very sad and 32 percent felt it was difficult to function. Almost 7 percent seriously considered suicide, 4 percent intentionally cut, burned, bruised or intentionally harmed themselves and 1.2 percent attempted suicide.
Because the survey responses were randomly selected, this survey can be applied to the university as a whole. This means that 134 students have attempted suicide, and almost 10,000 feel overwhelmed by their situations.
O’Donnell said a number of people are not sure what they might be experiencing, which is why the screening day is so beneficial to everyone.
“Their life maybe isn’t functioning well, so having that information and knowing that they are experiencing depression (is beneficial),” O’Donnell said. “We can treat that and there are resources out there.”
He said they expect between 100 and 150 students to attend, but anyone who is unsure of what they are experiencing is encouraged to stop by.
The screening will take place from 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Oct. 11 in the Idaho Commons.
Anyone seeking more information should visit mentalhealthscreening.org.
Katy Sword can be reached at email@example.com