Suicide is the second leading cause of death in the United States for individuals aged 10-34 (accidental injury is the only cause that exceeds it), and the fourth leading cause of death among individuals between the ages of 35 and 54. (National Institute of Mental Health)

“If we were to base our actions on the data rather than on stigma, we would be focusing far more on preventing suicide as a critical public health risk. We ought to be checking in on our students’ and colleagues’ psychological health as much or more than we do regarding their ‘physical’ health.”

Dr. David Sacks, licensed clinical psychologist

With a fuller toolkit of resources, together we can create a suicide-safer community for academics in crisis.

These links provide general guidance with a focus on mental health in university settings. Refer directly to your institution’s health and counseling centers for specific programs to help you or your colleagues and scholars.

Gatekeeper Training 

Gatekeeper training empowers participants to start initial conversations about suicide and mental illness and to refer someone in crisis for help (not to be the primary source of support). These trainings are available online and many universities offer live trainings.

QPR Institute


Suicide Prevention Resource Center

Kognito is an online interactive program that addresses how to help students, including those at risk for suicide.

Suicide Prevention Lifeline

Provides resources to prevent suicide including a 24/7 Lifeline 988 and crisis counseling via instant messaging.

Most people who die by suicide exhibit warning signs. Knowing the risk factors and signs may help you determine if a colleague is at risk and needs help.

Preventing Medical Trainee Suicide

Excellent information for healthcare professionals including facts about physician depression and suicide, prevention programs, links to additional resources, and toolkits for medical schools and residency/fellowship programs for coping after suicide loss.

Responding to Emotionally Distressed Students: A Faculty/Staff Guide

Specific guidelines designed by the Organization of Counseling Center Directors in Higher Education (OCCDHE) to assist faculty and staff in helping distressed students.

Grappling with Graduate Student Mental Health and Suicide

An in-depth look at a graduate student who died by suicide and concrete steps that academic institutions have taken to better support their graduate students’ mental health.

Supporting Graduate Student Health and Wellness

An overview of mental illness and death by suicide in graduate students with resources and strategies to support emotional health, and steps for helping someone in emotional pain.

Suicide Prevention in College

A thorough guide to emergency assistance, warning signs and prevention of suicide in college students. Includes a depression quiz and links to resources for LGBTQ, minority and veteran student populations.

Thanks to Dr. Julia Simmons and Dr. David Sacks for their professional expertise and for providing resources.


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