PR event creates mental health allies on campus

Courtney Theisen

Public relations students competed in the National Bateman Competition spread awareness for their client, the Campaign to Change Direction, in Reeve Union last Wednesday.

The event’s concept was to “take what you need, leave what you don’t,” emphasizing the importance of mental health. Students were able to take a Post-It note off the wall with a motivational saying, and then write something negative in their lives they wanted to throw away.

“It was surprising how receptive people were to our message, and that they actually took our campaign seriously,” student Carissa Brzezinski said.

Students were also invited to take the pledge to become an ally and learn the Five Signs of emotional suffering. The Five Signs are personality change, agitation, withdrawal, poor self-care and hopelessness. Students who took the pledge promised to look out for friends or loved ones that may exhibit one of the signs and support them when needed.

“During the three hours in Reeve, 55 people took the online pledge to become an ally,” student Courtney Theisen said.

The Campaign’s goal is to change the way people think and talk about mental health in America. By partnering with local businesses and campus resources, the class hopes to spread awareness about mental health and wellness across the UW Oshkosh community.

Upcoming events for the campaign include a photo booth in Sage 3408 on March 9 from 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. and yoga at the Student Recreation and Wellness Center on March 12 at 8 p.m.

Follow the class’s campaign on Facebook at UW Oshkosh Knows the Signs and on Instagram at @uwosh5signs.