By Andrea Ordonez, Editorial Editor
For the U.S. Army, October signifies National Depression Awareness Month. Just last week, Hofstra observed National Depression Screening Day alongside other schools and organizations around the country, by providing information about common mood concerns and mental health issues.
Most students forgot about the screening day, and overlooked the table because of a hectic day's schedule. However, the significance of the day and this month as a whole should not be undermined.
Life does not always include easy-breezy days and nice easy breezes. We all face hard times that make us feel like no one else suffers like we do. I remember experiencing that feeling in high school, where the struggle for popularity collides with the pressure to perform well academically.
For some in high school, the demands become too much. Without a loving sense of community and attention from others, they divert to seclusion without anyone really noticing.
No event in my life would have ever prepared me for the summer going into my senior year, when one of my childhood companions told me his best friend had committed suicide. To think that someone my age felt like they were so alone in this world was unacceptable. Every life has the potential to grow into something beautiful, and that potential should be fostered with good attention and care.
College has been an experience completely different from high school. Where the competition back then was bitter and rough, the community surrounding me encourages and celebrates personal growth and accomplishment. From the first semester here, Hofstra has emphasized the P.R.I.D.E. principles, which gives solace in the fact that we are not alone, but a community. The overall goal is that we graduate with P.R.I.D.E. and apply it to whatever occupation or environment we encounter.
Aside from the P.R.I.D.E. principles, Hofstra provides helpful services at the Saltzman Center, giving students the attention they deserve when they face times of stress and anxiety. There's also a club on campus called Active Minds, a student-run organization that seeks to increase awareness and promote an open conversation about mental health issues.
Besides seeing these great resources at work on campus, I have been an avid follower of To Write Love on Her Arms, a non-profit organization that provides support for people who struggle with depression, addiction, self-injury, and suicide. The organization has attracted students across the country through music and motivational speeches.
Hofstra is a place where no one should feel alone. It is a place of tolerance, acceptance, and community. For those that do feel like no one cares, try to reach out to someone. I guarantee that there will be a hand reaching out to help you.