Mental Health Education

Mental health is an important topic for our collegiate members, and Alpha Chi Omega recognizes the importance of assisting our members with engaging in this critical topic. A recent survey on behalf of the American College Health Association indicated that in the past year, three out of five students experienced overwhelming anxiety and two out of five students were too depressed to function.
As members continue to experience struggles with mental health concerns like anxiety, depression and substance abuse, Alpha Chi Omega continues to be a leading organization providing its members developmental programs to facilitate meaningful conversations around mental health.  


The JED Foundation

A Commitment to Collegiate Health

Alpha Chi Omega provides its collegiate members with information about mental health and wellness through its partnership with The Jed Foundation, a leading nonprofit organization whose mission is to promote emotional health among college and university students. The Gatekeeper Training through The Jed Foundation is tailored to teach collegiate executive board officers how to be gatekeepers, members of the campus community who are in a position to help students who may be struggling with mental health.
In September 2014, Alpha Chi Omega became the first National Panhellenic Conference organization to affiliate with The Jed Foundation, joining men’s fraternities Sigma Chi and Sigma Alpha Epsilon in reaching college students on this important topic. Read the partnership announcement.

Available Resources

You may know someone who is in emotional distress and may need help. In collaboration with The Jed Foundation, Alpha Chi Omega created three resources to offer guidance:

Behind Happy Faces

In an effort to assist collegiate chapters and advisors with honest conversations regarding mental health, Alpha Chi Omega has established a partnership with Ross Szabo, author of Behind Happy Faces, to create a groundbreaking curriculum focused on preparing members and advisors for managing mental health in the collegiate setting. For collegiate members, we provide four lessons to peer-facilitate using cutting-edge educational videos and lesson plans to enhance emotional development. Lessons help define mental health and break down the stigmas surrounding it; open doors for more vocabulary to discuss it with others; teach about effective coping; and help you help your friends who are experiencing mental health challenges. For advisors, we provide five engaging sessions that review similar topics as the collegiate series, but through the lens of a volunteer who supports members.

Mental Health Statistics:

  • 25% of college students experience a mental health disorder each year.1

  • Suicide is the second leading cause of death on college campuses. 2

  • 42% of people with a substance use disorder have a co-occurring mental health disorder.3

  • 76% of college students report feeling overwhelmed.4

  • 80-90% of people with depression who seek help see improvement in their symptoms.5

1. Kessler RC, Chiu WT, Demler O, Walters EE. Prevalence, severity, and comorbidity of twelve-month DSM-IV disorders in the National Comorbidity Survey Replication (NCS-R). Archives of General Psychiatry, 2005 Jun;62(6):617-27.
2 Suicide Prevention Resource Center. (2004). Promoting mental health and preventing suicide in college and university settings. Newton, MA: Education Development Center, Inc.
3. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration 
4 Kadison, Richard. Digeronimo, Theresa Foy. College of the Overwhelmed: The Campus Mental Health Crisis and What to do About it. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 2004.

Active Minds

Through our harm reduction alliance partnership with Pi Kappa Phi, Sigma Nu and Zeta Tau Alpha, we are excited to announce our recent collaboration with Active Minds. Read the partnership announcement here. This collaboration introduces Active Minds’ everyday guide for everyday challenges: Validate, Appreciate, Refer (V-A-R). V-A-R is an easy way to show up for a friend, helping them cope when they may be having more than a bad day. Be on the lookout for an educational poster, animated video and conversation starter in November 2019. 

National Resources

Want to know more about national resources or how to help a sister in need? Please reference this directory.
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Alpha Chi Omega Headquarters
5939 Castle Creek Parkway N. Dr.
Indianapolis, IN 46250

Phone: 317.579.5050
Fax: 317.579.5051