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UMW To Participate In College Football Mental Health Week

The University of Montana Western is proud to participate in College Football Mental Health Week from Sept. 26-Oct. 1 started by the Hilinski's Hope Foundation. The Hilinski's Hope Foundation (H3H) was founded in 2018 by Mark and Kym Hilinski to honor the life of their son Tyler, who died by suicide yet never showed any signs of depression or struggle. Hilinski's Hope Foundation is a non-profit organization formed to promote awareness and education of mental health and wellness for student athletes. The Foundation's mission is to educate, advocate, and eliminate the stigma associated with mental illness, while funding programs that provide student-athletes with the tools and resources that support their mental health and wellness. To view Tyler's story, click here.

Two-thirds of student-athletes indicated knowing where to go on campus for mental health concerns, and a majority (56%) reported knowing how to help a teammate experiencing a mental health issue. However, fewer than half (47%) felt they would be comfortable personally seeking support from a mental health provider on campus. Sixty-three percent of student- athletes felt their teammates take mental health concerns of fellow teammates seriously, and a slightly lower percentage (53%) reported that coaches take mental health concerns of their student-athletes seriously. Half of student-athletes believe that mental health is a priority to their athletics department. (NCAA)

The goal of this week is to raise mental health awareness, destigmatize mental illness, and provide quality resources to student athletes nationwide. Hilinski's Hope and UMW are partnering together as there is a shared belief that mental health is a crucial part of being a successful student-athlete. UMW is joining the mission alongside 100+ universities for this cause. Over the course of the week, UMW Athletics will be putting out social media content leading up to the football game on Saturday. The football team will be wearing decals in support of mental health and wellness.

To learn more about Hilinski's Hope, click here.

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