May 2010
News & Announcements

ECU's mission is to foster a learning environment in which students,
faculty, staff and community interact to educate students for life

Contact: Amy Ford
Jill Frye
East Central University
Communications and Marketing
580-559-5650 or 405-812-1428 (cell)
Or Bea Waller, ECU Student Counseling Center, 580-559-5714




A series of free mental health awareness webcasts will begin at 4 p.m. today [MAY 5] to mark "May is Mental Health Month."

"The hour-long webcasts are designed to help you recognize the signs and symptoms of common mental illnesses and learn what you can do to connect people with mental illness to resources in the community," said Bea Waller, director of East Central University's Student Counseling Center.

The webcasts also will identify peer and professional resources that can be contacted for help.

Today's live webcast will be on Understanding Depression. Topics for the next three Wednesdays are Understanding Anxiety Disorders on May 12; Understanding Psychosis on May 19 and Understanding Substance Use Disorders on May 26.

To participate, register in advance, up to the time of the webcast, at During the webcasts, participants will view slides on their computer screens and can listen to the presentation via computer speakers or by dialing in by phone.

The webcasts are offered by the National Council for Community Behavioral Healthcare, a national advocacy and public education organization. Each webcast is based on the content of the Mental Health First Aid USA 12-hour training and certification program offered by the council. Certified Mental Health First Aid USA instructors present the webcasts.

ECU's Waller and 21 other participants were the first such instructors to be trained in Oklahoma last July.

Waller said it is estimated that one in four Americans will have a diagnosable and treatable mental disorder at some point in their lives.

"It is extremely likely you will encounter someone in your family, workplace, school, church or community who is experiencing mental health challenges and requires support and intervention," Waller said. "Mental Health First Aid training teaches basic knowledge and skills to respond to an individual in distress."

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