Senior and psychology student Alannah Raymond established APSU’s chapter of Active Minds last year.
The members put on a few bake sales and outreach events, but they wanted to grow and be able to do more at APSU in the years to come.
Current President Colton Lockhart, a senior and psychology student at APSU was one of the first members of Active Minds. He said he had no intention of being president at the time.
“We were getting scared that nobody would want to continue it after last year, so I decided to give it a shot and I ran for president,” Lockhart said. “Their mission is close to my heart; what they want to do I want to do. I ran and next thing I know, I’m trying to figure everything out.”
The mission of Active Minds is to remove the stigma associated with mental illness by educating students about it and supporting those going through it.
Active Minds often partners with APSU’s Counseling Services,
“Collage is tough,” Lockhart said. “There are so many great resources for students who are struggling, and we want them to know about them.”
Lockhart said he wants to make the organization one that all students feel welcome in. His plans for Active Minds is to create a campus where mental health is not hidden or ignored, and a student body that is educated and supportive.
Currently, Active Minds has around 20 members and while Lockhart said he wants to see that grow, he is thankful for and amazed at the work the group has been able to get done.
“At first I was not sure how a group our size, with so many different personalities would be able to pull together towards a common goal,” Lockhart said. “We did it though, and I am so proud of how much we have been able to accomplish.”
On October 19, their hard work payed off, they were selected to host Active Mind’s Send Silence Packing event.
“It was one in the morning when I received the email,” Lockhart said. “I woke up and drove all the way to campus to tell our adviser.”
Send Silence Packing is an event put on by Active Minds that raises suicide awareness. The event features several backpacks, each one has a notecard with the story of a college student that has committed suicide.
Each year 10 to 12 chapters are chosen to host the event. After a long and tedious application process, APSU’s Active Minds was able to celebrate a huge success. The event will be held on April 8. Until then, Active Minds hopes to keep growing and plans to do more outreach under the leadership of Lockhart and his officers.
Lockhart will be graduating soon after the event, but said he is proud to leave the organization with what they have accomplished and he has faith in their future.
After graduation, Lockhart plans to go to graduate school for his Ph.D. in psychology and eventually start his own practice.