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Counseling Center Presents Suicide-Attempt Survivor for World Suicide Prevention Week

Inspirational Jordan Burnham Keynotes Series of Programs this Week

Staff of the award-winning University Counseling Center, which presents a week of events to observe Suicide Prevention Week.

ALBANY, N.Y. (September 20, 2011) – Suicide is the second leading cause of death for American college students and each year more than 100,000 U.S. college students attempt suicide. Yet, through counseling and educational interventions such as those in place at the University at Albany, U.S. suicide rates on campuses have been falling.

For that reason, as part of the University Counseling Center's delivery of broadly based psychological services, health promotion initiatives and prevention programs, the Center is lending its support to World Suicide Prevention Week, sponsoring a series of events this week through Thursday.

The feature event for the week will be a keynote speech by college student and former student-athlete Jordan Burnham on Wednesday at 8 p.m. in the Performing Arts Center Recital Hall. Burnham, whose clinical depression in 2007 led to a suicide attempt from which he miraculously survived, makes appearances at college campuses across America to caution and advise students on identifying the warning signs that may lead to suicide attempts and to encourage help-seeking.

In addition to the keynote presentation, World Suicide Prevention Week at UAlbany will include programs supporting health and wellness and interactive exhibits addressing suicide prevention and mental health promotion. A complete list of events may be found at the Counseling Center's "Step Up: Help Prevent Suicide" site.

Among the services offered by the University Counseling Center during the school year is a comprehensive 1.5 hour suicide prevention training program for faculty and staff, called the Save-a-Life Program.

The Center also operates the nationally recognized Middle Earth Hotline, whose trained student volunteers receive more than 1,600 contacts in a typical year, Monday - Thursday, noon to midnight, and from noon Friday through midnight on Sunday during the academic year. Hotline staffers respond to requests for assistance ranging from concerns over academic performance to more universal problems of loneliness, alcohol or drugs, and depression.

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