Recent data from the American Psychological Association shows that one in three college freshmen struggle with mental health. Adjusting to the new stressors of college life - moving away from home, academic pressure, and navigating relationships - can become too overwhelming while managing a mental health condition. In too many cases student academic performance suffers, oftentimes leading to dropping out.

Join us to learn how The University of ChicagoUniversity of Dayton, and Pennsylvania College of Technology are supporting their incoming students by mandating mental health training. By training first-year students, these schools are preparing them to recognize signs of psychological distress among their peers, build trust, and motivate fellow students to seek help on campus.

Suggested Audiences

  • Director of Counseling Center
  • Residence Life Director
  • Dean of Student Services
  • VP of Student Affairs
  • VP Student Life

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Kathy Zakarian, Psy.D., Director of Counseling Services at Pennsylvania College of Technology

Kathy Zakarian, Psy.D. is the Director of Counseling Services at Pennsylvania College of Technology in Williamsport, Pennsylvania. She earned her doctorate in clinical psychology from the Illinois School of Professional Psychology and has worked in college counseling setting for the last twenty years. Penn College just completed a 3-year Garrett Lee Smith Campus Suicide Prevention Grant through SAMHSA, where Kathy led the efforts, serving as the project director.
Layla Matariyeh, MPH, Health Educator, Health Promotion and Wellness at The University of Chicago

Layla Matariyeh joined the University of Chicago two years ago after obtaining her master's degree in public health with a concentration in health education from the University of South Florida. Matariyeh’s passion for mental health drives her program management at UChicago. She helps to manage programs like Mental Health First Aid, Mindfulness Meditation, Wellness Coaching, and Kognito, which has now been mandated for all incoming freshman as of the 2018-2019 academic year.
Sarah DeWitt, Coordinator of Health Education and Wellness Promotion at the University of Dayton Health and Wellness

Sarah DeWitt has served as the Coordinator of Health Education and Wellness Promotion at the University of Dayton since 2015 where she has been actively involved in creating, implementing, and assessing programs and resources for students, faculty, and staff. Her work has a specific focus on mental health and suicide prevention. Sarah is currently pursuing her second master’s degree in public health, holds a master's degree in college student personnel from Bowling Green State University, and a bachelor’s degree in health and exercise science from Roanoke College. Before starting her position at the University of Dayton, Sarah worked at Champlain College in Burlington, Vermont.
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