Addressing mental health issues requires an interdisciplinary and collaborative approach. In January 2020, the university joined the Jed Foundation (JED) in a four-year partnership to become a JED Campus. This partnership provides both a framework to review USU’s existing programs throughout the university’s statewide system and expert guidance to develop a strategic plan based on best practices.
About JED Campus
JED Campus is an initiative of The Jed Foundation (JED) designed to guide schools through a collaborative process of comprehensive systems, program and policy development with customized support to build upon existing student mental health, substance misuse and suicide prevention efforts. JED Campuses partner with JED to not only assess and enhance the work that is already being done, but also to create positive, systemic change in the campus community.
JED Campus Timeline
|Spring 2020||USU joined the JED Campus program and implemented the first Healthy Minds Study surveys to measure students’ attitudes, behaviors, and awareness on emotional well-being and substance use issues.|
|Fall 2020||Completed a university system-wide baseline assessment of USU’s systems, policies, and programs.|
|Spring 2021||Virtual site visit from JED team that included student focus groups.|
|Summer 2021||Finalized a campus-wide mental health strategic plan with objectives and action steps.|
|Fall 2021||President Cockett appointed JED Campus Implementation Steering Committee; working groups began developing implementation of the strategic action items.|
|Spring 2022||Implementation of the strategic plan and second Healthy Minds Study survey to measure progress and inform changes to mental health strategic plan.|
|Fall 2022||Strategic plan moves into sustainability phase.|
The university’s steering committee implements the strategic plan and tracks progress. This steering committee includes representatives from across campus and includes individuals involved in mental health services, academics, student affairs, communications, and international student services, as well as leaders from USU’s residential campuses across Utah.
Steering Committee Members
Robert Wagner, Vice President for Academic and Instructional Services (co-chair)
Eri Bentley, Associate Director for Counseling and Psychological Services (co-chair)
Paul Barr, Vice Provost and Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering
Janis Boettinger, Vice Provost for Global Engagement and Professor of Pedology
Greg Dart, Associate Vice President for USU Eastern
Amanda DeRito, Associate Vice President for Strategic Communications
Krystin Deschamps, Director of Student Conduct and Community Standards
James Morales, Vice President for Student Affairs
Eric Olsen, Associate Vice President for Student Affairs
Kristian Olsen, Associate Vice President for USU Blanding
Michael Torrens, Executive Director for Analysis, Assessment and Accreditation
Ethan Conlee, USU Student Association Student Advocate Vice President
Several working groups were also named to implement specific action items, including for communications, training development and prevention, direct services, policy and procedure, curricular integration, and campus culture.
Working Group Chairs
Paul Barr, Curricular Integration
Eri Bentley, Training Development and Prevention
Janis Boettinger, Campus Culture
Amanda DeRito, Communications
Krystin Deschamps, Policy and Procedure
Eric Olsen, Direct Services