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Suicide is second leading cause of death for students

Free on-campus counseling is available to students in need of help

By Hilary Houenou
On April 12, 2019

Editor’s note: The names of students in this article have been changed to protect their identity.  

Many college students face obstacles and some may be scared to ask for help.  

According to USA Today, every day, three out of four students experience very stressful events such as family member death, school pressure, career issues or mental health problems. And, as reported by, research has shown that suicide is the second leading cause of death for college students after car accidents. 

Anna Clinton, clinical coordinator/counselor at Kirkwood Community College, provided suggestions for how to help someone who may be struggling.  

“If you know someone or are close to someone and see changes in their behavior such as lack of motivation, talking with no hope, saying goodbye without saying goodbye, or them telling you straight up they tried to killed themselves, the first thing to do is to believe them, listen to them and guide them to a counselor for help,” said Clinton.  

She added, “Counselors are not there to judge you or tell you what is wrong with you, they are the helpful hand that listens to you and works on a safety plan with you on who to call if you need a therapist, a referral or medication depending on your needs.”  

Kirkwood student John Smith said, “Those days when it gets the best of me, I turn toward music to help express my feelings. Surround yourself with family and friends because they will always be there for you.” 

Jane Jones, another Kirkwood student, said, “Every time I get a thought like that, I think about who I would hurt if I am gone and how they will feel about it and I tell myself I am not going through with it and I need to fight it for my love ones.” 

Kirkwood offers free counseling to students. According to, “Talking with a counselor is a healthy way to address the challenges you are facing, establish coping skills, develop personal insight and achieve academic and personal success.” 


Statistics used can be found at


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