Suicide prevention training offered

The University Counseling and Testing Center (UCTC) and the UO Suicide Prevention Team are offering suicide prevention trainings to faculty, staff, departments, individuals and groups. These trainings will teach participants how to recognize the warning signs associated with suicides and how to intervene effectively to steer at-risk students toward professional help. 

Professionals from UCTC will lead a campus-wide training from 2 to 4 p.m. on March 21. The two-hour “gatekeeper” training will educate faculty and staff to recognize and communicate with suicidal students and to make effective referrals. To register for the training, please email Donna Miller at

A 2006 national study found that 6 to 10 percent of all undergraduates are seriously suicidal, and half of them had told no one. More than half had never received professional help.

It’s incumbent upon those who have daily contact with students to notice if a student seems suicidal and to take action. An online Suicide Report Form is available for those who feel a particular student may be at risk for suicide. 

Once the report is filled out, someone from the campus Suicide Assessment Team then contacts the reporter, gathers additional information and provides follow-up guidance on engaging the student to get help.

Students have been helped by receiving counseling and enrolling in programs that teach them positive coping skills. Such programs have proved to be effective in reducing the risk of suicide.

The UO has recently partnered with the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP) to implement a new online screening program for at-risk students.

The program is launching this term and will initially involve freshmen, who will be invited to take an online survey that screens for depression, anxiety, anger, substance abuse and other suicide risk factors. Students who appear to be at risk will be encouraged to come in to meet with a counselor.

The Faculty & Staff section of the UCTC website includes several additional online resources for helping students in distress or dealing with students who are disruptive or threatening. An inspirational message on suicide prevention is available on the UO video, “100 Reasons to Stay.”

To schedule a suicide prevention gatekeeper training for your office or department, please submit a request at this link. You may also request a shorter, 45–60 minute training that teaches how to recognize suicide warning signs and provides an overview of campus resources.