Outreach Services At A Glance

It is the mission of the Counseling Center’s Outreach Services to provide educational programming on mental health topics of interest to the campus community with particular focus on the needs of underserved populations. We hope to empower students to develop the awareness, values, and skills they will need to meet future challenges and lead vital, meaningful lives.

Workshops on a variety of mental health topics are offered regularly throughout the semester. The dropdown menu below provides an overview of those workshops typically offered, as well as some of the other types of outreach our Center provides. The Spring 2023 in-person workshop schedule is being finalized, once scheduled workshop information is available here: CC Workshop Schedule.

All interview requests by media outlets should reach out to Mary-Hope G. Vass, Executive Director of Communications and University Spokesperson (vassmg@jmu.edu, 540-568-7487).

At this time, due to the high demand for clinical services, the Counseling Center will not be taking any new outreach and/or class project requests.

We will also NOT be taking on any support staff requests. If you are organizing an event in which you worry that students may become distressed due to the topic being presented and/or discussed, please have a slide or your speaker inform your audience of how to access mental health support services (i.e., TimelyCare’s TalkNow support  is available 24/7 for students through the TimelyCare App or timelycare.com/jmu. Additionally, for mental health emergencies (e.g., thoughts or plans to kill yourself, thoughts of seriously harming others, recent sexual assault) occurring after regular CC business hours call the Counseling Center at 540-568-6552 and press "1” to connect to the after-hours crisis line.)

Thank you for your patience and understanding. Please direct any questions or concerns to Dr. Magali Laitem laitemmx@jmu.edu.

Outreach Services

Workshop Schedule

Possible workshop topics:

  • Anger Management
  • Animal Assisted Therapy
  • Assertiveness Building
  • Compassion and Vicarious Trauma
  • Dealing with Depression
  • Homesickness
  • Imposter Syndrome
  • Living with Trauma
  • Managing Perfectionism
  • Mindfulness
  • Mindfulness through Doodling
  • Myths and Truths about Group Counseling
  • Reducing the Risk of Suicide at JMU
  • Self-Compassion
  • Sleep Hygiene
  • Social Media & Other Digital Technology: Friend, Foe, or Both?
  • Stress and Anxiety Management
  • Understanding Self Harm


Spring 2023 Outreach Events


 How to Live Mentally Well and Crush it in College -

  • When: Thursday, 2/9/23, from 7-8:15pm; Where: Grafton Stovall Theatre
  • In this talk, author and college mental health specialist, Josh Rivedal talks about his college days in a format that’s visceral and creates an emotional connection between students and the powerful message that it’s okay to talk about mental health and that it’s possible to live mentally well in college and beyond. Josh will cover: what mental health is and is not, coping skills, what depression and anxiety is and how we can cope with either or both, how to reframe failure, how to help oneself or a friend if in a mental health breakdown, and finding and cultivating hope during difficult times. In this talk, Josh combines storytelling, science, and light humor; the session will end with a Q&A.


Out of the Darkness JMU Campus Walk -

  • When: Sunday, 4/2/23, walk begins at 1pm; Where: Festival Lawn & 5k route
  • Suicide Prevention and Awareness Walk supporting the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention's (AFSP) Lifesaving work.
  • Walk because we need to change the culture. Depression, bipolar, anxiety disorder, and other mental health conditions will affect 1 in 4 of us during our lives, and yet too often these illnesses go untreated. In the United States alone someone attempts suicide every minute.

    Walk because students can save lives. Students are a force for change. Be a part of this walk and join thousands of students across the country to raise money for the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.

    Walk because we can prevent suicide. Together we can bring mental health conditions like depression and anxiety out of the darkness and put a stop to this loss of life.

    Walk to support a friend, a loved one, or yourself. We all have a reason to walk, and each reason connects us.


Take Back the Night

  • When: April 18, 2023, 6-8pm; Where: Hartman Hall, Room 2021
  • Speak out followed by a flower release
  • Take Back the Night (TBTN) is an annual event where survivors have a chance to share their story publicly in order to raise awareness about the impact of sexual violence. TBTN events have been happening nationally and internationally since the 1960s to raise awareness about sexual violence through protests, marches, and other speak outs. At JMU, Take Back the Night traditionally begins with a survivor Speak Out, in which survivors who would like to share their story publicly can do so, and the event ends with a Flower Release on Newman Lake. This event is open to everyone, whether you are a survivor yourself, know someone who has experienced sexual assault, or care about this issue and want to show your support.
  • Suicide Risk Reduction presentations are available to classrooms and student groups as requested and availibility allows.
  • Events are held for National Suicide Prevention Week, during early September.

AAT activities include: Puppy Pride & Pet-A-Pup

Spring 2023 Schedule:

Puppy Pride location: Lavender Lounge
  • Wednesday, Feb 22nd 1-1:45pm *canceled
  • Wednesday, March 29th 1-1:45pm
  • Wednesday, April 26th 1-1:45pm
  • Monday, May 8th 1-1:45pm
Pet-A-Pup location: SSC 3106
  • Thursday, Feb 16th 11-11:30am
  • Thursday, March 8th 11-11:30am
  • Thursday, April 13th 11-11:30am

Our therapy dogs, Gracie, Calla, and Wicket will NOT be open to additional outreach requests beyond these already listed. This is due to our therapy dogs also providing clinical services and wanting to protect them from burn out as well. Thank you for your support and understanding. If you are in need or wanting to have therapy dogs be at an event you are organizing, we would recommend reaching out to the Harrisonburg chapter of Therapy Dog International: https://www.tdi-dog.org/default.aspx

  • Psychology 402 class for undergraduates provide a wide variety of workshops each semester
  • Workshops are considered Wellness Passport events. You can view the entire schedule on our Workshops page.

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