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Mental Health Awareness Month

Learn about how WGU Supports

Mental Health Awareness

Every student is unique, and so are the circumstances they may face. Your educational experience should be as unique as you are. We value our students' differences because we recognize that diversity breeds strength, which is why we strive to be the world's most inclusive university. WGU is bridging the gap between opportunity and talent.

We work to recognize, promote, and amplify voices, while also expanding opportunities for students across the country. This objective motivates us to provide high-quality, equitable higher education to all people, regardless of their background or location. We achieve equity for all students by making degree possibilities more accessible and enhancing learning access.

Join us as we recognize Mental Health Awareness Month, and see how students and employees are supporting their communities around the country.

Ashley Talbert headshot

Mental Health Awareness Month: Employee Spotlight Ashley Talbert

According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), 73% of students experience a mental health crisis during college, and of those, 45% will drop out due to changes in their mental health. 

Teresa Killen headshot

Mental Health Awareness Month: Student Spotlight Teresa Killen

Teresa Killen’s journey to WGU was not an easy one and is defined by her bold ability to overcome challenges. Due to a traumatic auto accident in 2008, Teresa suffered physical and brain injuries that left her to navigate expressive and receptive aphasia and dysgraphia.

"OM for Wellness aligns with and fully embraces WGU’s cultural values:  Advance Equity; Own It; Engage Respectfully; One-by-One; Aim True; Trust Generously; and Achieve Together. Together, we stand behind these values, serving as another layer of support for each other as we navigate challenging times."

––Open Minds (OM) for Wellness at WGU

Advance Equity Speaker Series

Dior Vargas is an award-winning intersectional mental health activist delivering education and resources to all communities. A native New Yorker, growing up in Spanish Harlem, Dior identified as an activist in high school after facing her own mental health issues and realizing the gap in mental health resources for people of color and the QTBIPOC community. She is a self-proclaimed storyteller bringing warmth, humility, and vulnerability to the conversation. For more information about Dior’s work, publications, research, and recognition, visit her website.

“Understanding Mental Health Stigma: Perspectives from a Queer Latina Feminist Mental Health Activist”

Dior Vargas, MS, MPH (she/her/hers)

"Seeking out counseling was one of the hardest decisions, but it was also one of the best decisions of my life. I sought counseling for over a year while obtaining my degree. Throughout this process, I was able to come out of my deep depression and get back on track with school, completing 13 classes in my second term. Not only did counseling help me get back on track at school, but I was able to get back on track in my personal life."
–Alex B., WGU Business Graduate

Breaking Down Mental Health Stigmas

Here is a discussion from the 2019 SHRM Conference among Aaron Silverman - Lead Communications Representative at WGU, Andrew Morton - Director of Social Engagement for SHRM (Society for Human Resource Management) and Becky Melton - Senior Course Instructor in the WGU College of Business.

"I have the ability to do anything I set my mind to, and with time and practice, I do it very well. I have my ADHD to thank for that ability. I have learned to turn ADHD into my superpower, giving me the ability to multitask and produce high quality, high speed productivity."
–Jody H., WGU Alumna

Interested in working in the mental health field?

Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (BSN-to-MSN) – M.S. Nursing

This program for BSNs who have an active, unencumbered RN license prepares...

This program for BSNs who have an active, unencumbered RN license prepares you to become a board-certified Mental Health Nurse Practitioner.

  • Locations: Due to the clinical requirements of this degree program, the PMHNP program at WGU is currently NOT open to students who have a permanent residence in the following states: Arizona, California, District of Columbia, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, New York, North Dakota, Oregon, Tennessee, Washington, and Wisconsin.
  • Time: 2½ years.
  • Tuition and fees: $6,350 per six-month term, plus a Health Professions Student Fee of $350
  • Courses: 17 total courses in this program.

This program is for current RNs who have earned their BSN and are ready to move forward in their career. This MSN program prepares students to become licensed as a Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner in select states. 

Students must have a permanent and active license from a state that is not listed above, must complete the internships in that state, and intend to obtain initial APRN licensure in that state. See more state-specific information related to nursing licensure. Compact licenses must be endorsed by your state of residence. More about compact licenses.

Visit the WGU Store

Mental Health Awareness Month shirt from WGU Store

WGU Store: Mental Health Awareness Month

Celebrate Mental Health Awareness Month with WGU with our officially branded merchandise!

Featured Articles

Wooden desk with a laptop, coffee cup, notepad, and phone

WellConnect Resource for WGU Students: Help Designed for Your Busy Life

WGU provides access to free counseling and support services for all active students. Through a partnership with WellConnect, WGU Night Owls can access online therapists 24x7.

Smaller rocks stacked on top of a bigger rock in the water

Creating A School Life Balance

While seasons change and time passes, there is no special occasion needed to work on creating a school and life balance!  Anytime is the perfect time to get organized and prepare yourself for the tasks that await you. Taking this time to prepare mentally and physically will help you stay focused and in balance as you work toward your goals. 

Woman holding a paper at a desk with a laptop while concentrating

Managing Financial Stress

Whether you’re a first-time student or returning an extended absence, staying on top of your finances is critical for your success. The best way to keep your head above water is to keep your financial life in order. That means you need to assess where your finances are, what burdens you may encounter, and if the time you spend working each day is maximized to benefit your wallet.

Woman sitting on yoga mat with a laptop

Incorporating Rest And Relaxation Into A Busy Schedule

Some people feel like they have to be productive or doing something all the time. As a college student, it can be even more difficult to find time to rest and relax with looming due dates and various responsibilities both in and outside of school.

Woman looking sad while sitting at a desk with a laptop

Coping With Anxiety And Depression

Many people experience feelings of anxiety or depression at some point in their lives. As a student, it can be especially difficult to manage these emotions while juggling schoolwork and other responsibilities. If you have been feeling depressed or anxious, you are certainly not alone.

Student studying on laptop in a booth

Coping With Test Anxiety

Between starting your academic journey to preparing to enter the workforce with a new degree, students face many stress-inducing challenges

Person holding a sign that says "Silence Allows Violence"

Domestic Violence Awareness

COVID-19 has greatly altered the way most people in the world live, forcing many out of their routines and into a situation of health and economic uncertainty.

Blocks that spell out "Change"

Manage The Changes In Your Life

Every day you face unexpected challenges that require you to change your plans and find room in your schedule so that your priorities and responsibilities do not fall behind.

A couple having a discussion while seated

Coping With Relationship Stress

Whether you’re starting to develop conflicts with your roommates or struggling to manage the complex personalities that exist within your family or with your loved ones, the stress that you experience can easily bleed into other areas of your life.

Two people on a couch - one is crying and the other is comforting them

Coping With Tragedy

Tragedies occur in different forms and affect everyone differently. It might be a situation that occurs in your personal life, or it could be a global event you watch through media coverage.

Blocks that spell out "Hope"

Suicide Prevention

Life is in a constant state of flux, and as our trajectories, relationships, responsibilities, physical health, and emotional wellbeing change, so does our ability to adapt to the stresses those changes can create.

Painting that says "Resilience"

The Importance Of Developing Resilience

Resilience is a powerful word that might seem reserved for only the strongest people. Luckily, resilience is not something you are either born with or not—it is a quality you can continually strive toward to aid in your personal growth and overall wellbeing.

Scholarships Available for Affordable Education

Scholarships are one of the many ways in which WGU removes obstacles from your path to achieving your education goals and improving your career opportunities.

Rise Above Grant

If you’re a new student facing financial hardships from inflation, you may apply for this grant, which may provide up to $4,000 that can be used toward your tuition.

Nurse Appreciation Scholarship

We invite nurses who want to earn a bachelor's or master's nursing degree to apply for the Nurse Appreciation Scholarship, valued at up to $4,000.

WGU Loves Teachers Scholarship

We invite teachers and aspiring teachers to apply for the WGU Loves Teachers Scholarship. This opportunity is for prospective teachers who want to earn their teacher certification and current educators ready to advance their careers.