Higher education systems award $45,000 in grants to strengthen college student mental health services in WV

CHARLESTON, W.Va. – West Virginia’s Higher Education Policy Commission and Community and Technical College System have awarded $45,000 in grants to support student mental health at colleges and universities across the state. Through these Campus Mental Health Grants, institutions will implement a variety of projects that include identifying existing mental health services for improvement, increasing accessibility of clinical services, integrating mental health promotion and prevention throughout the campus system, and establishing a campus-wide culture that strives to identify, prevent, and treat mental illness.

“We’ve been working hard at the statewide level to ramp up our efforts to improve mental health support for college students across West Virginia, and this mission is now more important than ever during the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Sarah Armstrong Tucker, West Virginia’s Chancellor of Higher Education. “I’m grateful to these institutions for strengthening their dedication to students’ mental well-being, and I’m looking forward to doing even more to keep our students healthy, learning, and focused on their futures.”

Examples of funded project activities include: implementing resilience programming for students, evaluating and addressing racial and ethnic disparities in behavioral health care on campus, developing materials to increase student awareness about mental health and available services, evaluating and developing campus wide mental health policies and plans, and increasing access to mental health counseling opportunities for students.

The following institutions will receive $5,000 each for their projects.

  • BridgeValley Community and Technical College: Training and Development of a Behavioral Intervention Team
  • Concord University, Research and Development Corporation: CU Campus Mental Health Committee, CU Healthy Minds Project
  • Marshall University Research Corporation, Counseling Center: We Are… Here for You Projects and Services
  • Marshall University Research Corporation, Psychology Clinic: An Examination of Campus Racial and Ethnic Mental Health Treatment Disparity
  • New River Community and Technical College: Free Mental Health Counseling for Students
  • Pierpont Community & Technical College: Campus-Wide Mental Health Initiative
  • West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine: Art as Mental Health Self-Care
  • West Virginia State University, Office of Counseling and Accessibility Services: Mental Health Grant
  • West Virginia University, Office of Student Wellness: Integrating Mental Health Promotion and Prevention at WVU

Applicants were encouraged to partner with existing resources on campus and in the community, including health centers; counseling centers; counseling, psychology, social work or other human services academic departments; regional prevention lead organizations; recovery support; and, community mental health agencies.