Active Minds Connect At HWS – Hobart and William Smith Colleges \
The HWS Update

Active Minds Connect At HWS

If you love the visceral snap, crackle and pop of squeezing a sheet of bubble wrap, then Stomp Out Stigma was the event for you. On Thursday, May 1, the path leading to the Scandling Campus Center was covered with giant sheets of bubble wrap as part of an awareness-raising event organized by Active Minds. Charged with breaking down the negative stigma that surrounds mental illness, Active Minds is the campus chapter of a national organization dedicated to educating college students about mental health. The club, made up of enthusiastic psychology majors and professors, also set up tables to provide information promoting mental health. “What is so exciting about this club is that it can help anyone reduce normal college stresses, like test anxieties,” explains senior Ashley Schnakenberg, the club’s vice president. “We are trying to create a more holistic well-being by increasing self-awareness.” Led by Jeff Vanlone, director of the counseling center, Beth Wilson, a member of the psychology department, and senior Mark Abroms, the group is planning several other campus-wide events that will encourage community members to better understand mental health issues and hopefully create a safe, open environment for discussion of mental health. “Although we began as a group of folks interested in psychology, we really want the group to expand to the HWS community,” says Schankenberg. Abroms agrees. “In the future, we definitely hope to set up more events and add peer counseling to the group’s initiatives,” he said. Active Minds meets weekly at 9 p.m. every Wednesday in Gulick 223, and all are welcome.

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