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University of Wisconsin Oshkosh public relations students in Journalism 455 are competing in the National Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA) Bateman Competition this semester, and are tasked with creating a public relations campaign for the Campaign to Change to Change Direction.

The campaign’s goal is to change the culture of mental health in America so that those who are suffering can get the help they deserve. The class has partnered with the UW Oshkosh Counseling Center,  Women’s Center, Student Recreation and Wellness Center and local schools and businesses to bring awareness of mental health on campus.

According to the Campaign to Change Direction, one in five people has a diagnosed mental health condition. The Change Direction initiative is a collection of concerned citizens, nonprofit leaders, and leaders from the private sector who have come together to change the culture in America about mental health and wellness.

“I love the campaign’s message that everyone has mental health, and it’s important for people to take care of themselves,” UWO student Carissa Brzezinski said.

The campaign encourages everyone to pay attention to their emotional well-being since it is just as important as physical well-being. Sometimes one’s mental health is great, but other times it suffers. Help is available if the five signs of emotional suffering are known.

The five signs of emotional suffering are simple and observable signs that everyone can see and learn. The signs include: personality change, agitation, withdrawal, poor self-care and hopelessness. Learning the five signs can save a life.

The signs are indicators of emotional suffering in general, not specific signs of a given disorder or condition. If you recognize that someone in your life is suffering, reach out, show compassion and offer help.

The Counseling Center, located in the Student Success Center Suite 240, is a free and confidential service available for all students. The Counseling Center’s services include those that are personal, academic or even questions about what to major in.

To stay up to date on the campaign, follow @uwoshkoshknowsthesigns on Facebook and @uwosh5signs on Instagram.

Submitted by students from Journalism 455. Faculty, staff and students are encouraged to contribute calendar items, campus announcements and other good news to UW Oshkosh Today.