Western’s BRAVE Program Looks to Provide an Outlet for the Winter Blues

by Evan Keen
Office of Communications and Marketing intern

Western Washington University’s BRAVE program (Building Resilience and Voicing Empathy) is putting on their annual Seasonal Affective Disorder/Depression (SAD) screening event for students from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Monday, Jan. 9 in the Viking Union Multipurpose Room.

Beat the Blues is happening at this time of year as grey skies and shortened days can lead to increases in SAD. This is caused by factors like the shortened days and the grey days in the Upper Pacific Northwest during the winter.

The event allows students the opportunity to be screened for signs of depression. The screening consists of mood questionnaires and seasonal pattern questionnaires.  After being screened the student will then be able to have a quick follow up with a counselor from the WWU Counseling Center, faculty from the Psychology Department or a representative from the Prevention and Wellness Center about the results from the screening. If a student is found to be more than moderately depressed, they will have the opportunity to schedule a follow-up appointment.

Ian Vincent, Men’s Resilience Specialist at WWU’s Counseling Center, is spearheading the organization of the Beat the Blues event with help from Kasandra Church, Suicide Prevention coordinator, and Courtney Manz, Disability Outreach coordinator.

“This event is for all students, faculty and staff, it’s not just for those feeling depressed. It’s a really great way to just see what mental health resources are available to everyone,” Vincent said.

Aside from the screenings and counselor meetings the event will offer therapeutic activities and crafts along with resources for seasonal depression during the event. Other activities include a mindfulness corner, creating stress balls and therapy dogs amongst others.

for more information on BRAVE's "Beat the Blues" event, contact Ian Vincent at 650-2127 or ian.vincent@wwu.edu.



Friday, January 6, 2017 - 10:14am

Ian Vincent (WWU photo/Caleb Albright)

Event Date

Beat the Blues: VU Multipurpose Room