Ad hoc panel looking to speak with students as part of mental health initiative

| January 15, 2016 9:24am
Photo by The Beacon.

by Cheyenne Schoen |

An ad hoc panel on mental and emotional health is looking to hear from students to better understand and promote wellness practices in the UP community.

Panel chair and political science professor Gary Malecha said the panel hopes to identify small groups of students from varying parts of campus who would like to speak on the matter. Psychology professor Andrew Guest, who is organizing the focus groups, spoke with ASUP this week in hopes of identifying students to participate in focus groups. Guest said those who would like to participate in a focus group should email him directly (

The ad hoc panel will also hear directly from representatives of the student group Active Minds in the coming weeks.

The panel, assembled last November by University President Fr. Mark Poorman, consists of seven faculty and staff members. The panel will speak with roughly 16 different entities from both University and outside institutions. Among the groups are representatives from campus ministry, the Health Center, Residence Life, ROTC, the Department of Athletics and associate deans from each of the colleges.

“Our goal is, early on in the semester, that we will have prepared and have presented to Fr. Poorman a report in which we identify what it is that’s going on, the things we’re doing well and things we might do to augment what it is we currently offer to our students,” Malecha said. “We want to make sure that we identify new opportunities that respond to the demands of the campus community.”

Cheyenne Schoen is a reporter for The Beacon. She can be reached at