Kent State Campus Walk is held to raise funds for suicide prevention programs

Ashley Gerenday

According to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, suicide is the second leading cause of death in college students.

Teresa Rishel, associate professor for the College of Education, Health and Human Services, is working to raise awareness of this growing threat through the Out of the Darkness Kent State Campus Walk April 13. The walk, sponsored by the AFSP, will raise money for suicide prevention programs.

Rishel said the walk will not only bring awareness and education to college suicides, but also break the stigma of not being able to talk about suicide.

“You know, we’ve had a lot of suicides over the 10 years that I’ve been here,” Rishel said. “It seems like every year, or every other year, we have one.”

An opening ceremony will begin at 3 p.m., and the walk will start at 4 p.m. The three to five mile walk will wind through the Kent Campus, beginning and ending in Risman Plaza. Participants are welcome to bring their dogs with them, Rishel said, and will find refreshment stands along the way.

The event page lists a $15,000 fundraising goal, and each walker is asked to raise at least $100. However, Rishel said no one will be turned away because he or she did not raise enough.

Online registration for the walk will be open up until the day of the walk, and online registration will begin at 3p.m.

Rishel plans to continue and grow the event each year.

“It is our first year, our first annual, and we will continue it each year,” Rishel said. “As long as I’m around.”

Contact Ashley Gerenday at [email protected].