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Active Minds chapter earns national award


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The members of Sac State’s Active Minds chapter with their Uniting Voices award.

Sacramento State’s Active Minds chapter ( received high marks at the organization’s national conference in Washington, D.C., garnering the Uniting Voices Award for its strong collaborative efforts with various groups on campus and in the greater community.

Active Minds is a national student organization that provides outreach and education on mental health issues. The Sac State chapter is one of 400 across the country and has 18 members. It’s part of the Peer Health Education Program within the University’s Student Health and Counseling Center.

Members of the local chapter do class presentations, and arrange events, workshops and awareness campaigns, says Kalyn Coppedge, a health educator and instructor with the center.

They received the Uniting Voices Award for work on events such as the Out of the Darkness Campus Walk for suicide prevention, which was a collaboration of more than 50 campus teams and 1,000 participants. It also was a community outreach event with the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.

“This award really belongs to our campus and community since it was given for collaboration and unity,” Coppedge says. “Without the support of the Sacramento State community, including the ASI grant that serves as our primary source of funding, we never could have done so much and been recognized.”

Other groups Active Minds has worked with include the PRIDE Center for Out in the Locker Room, about athletes and the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community. They also helped stage the Mirrorless Monday project for the Love Your Body week with The WELL and the University Union.

The Washington conference was attended by eight Sacramento State chapter members: Beatriz Aurello, Modesta Rangel, Melissa Rios, Danielle Saunders, Manmeet Singh, Lina Tishchenko, Katherine Williams and James Wong. Singh and Tishchenko also presented at the conference.

“I am very proud of our group of students for taking Active Minds from a new chapter in 2011 to a nationally award-winning chapter so quickly,” Coppedge says.

For more information on Active Minds, call (916) 278-5422. For media assistance, call Sacramento State’s Public Affairs office at (916) 278-6156. – Craig Koscho