An outgrowth of Mayor Bill De Blasio’s ThriveNYC program, the Medgar Evers College Mental Health First Aid Training program being held on Friday, September 8 will be an all-day affair running from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. in room 312 at Academic Complex I located at 1638 Bedford Ave. The program returns in–person for the first time since the pandemic lockdown. Presented by the MEC Emergency Management Preparedness Committee and Office of Health Services in collaboration with the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene.
The free course provides the following:
- Provide helpful mechanisms to manage mental health challenges brought on by various factors.
- Teach about health disparities in communities of color.
- Share valuable information about mental health resources available in NYC.
For MEC Director of Health Services Althea Willie, the program is not only crucial for students, but faculty who are often in a position to notice if individuals are in any kind of mental health crisis.
“We are a higher education institution, so our whole thing is that we want to ensure that individuals recognize [any mental health situation they might be in],” Willie said. “A lot of times, professors are first line for a lot of these students. For them to know that a student is in distress and to be able to provide them with the resources that they need to give them the assistance so they can continue to function as a student and eventually walk across that stage to graduate. A lot of times, students come into the classroom and because of issues that happen outside of the classroom—be they social, economic, or financial— students may not be functioning the way they need to inside of a classroom. Instead of them getting bad grades and being targeted as students not performing as well as they could, the idea is to have professors think outside of the box and realize that something is wrong and they might need further assistance.”
And while registration is capped for the full-day course, MEC community members are encouraged to come by to learn about more mental health resources and programs they can be directed to.
For more information, contact Althea Willie at 718-270-6075 or Goldene Lewis at 718-270-6121.