Webinar, documentary explore mental health and suicide

Published on September 15, 2022

The Impact of Schools on Mental Health: An Obermann Conversation

Schools play a crucial role in young people’s mental health, something that became extremely clear during the COVID-19 pandemic. According to the CDC, in 2021, 37% of high school students reported they experienced poor mental health, and 44% reported they persistently felt sad or hopeless during the past year. Schools provide connectedness to mentors, friends, and services. At the same time, they can also be sites of difficulty in the form of bullying or stress from learning obstacles. 

In this conversation, we will learn more about research and resources available in our area, including the work of the newly formed Scanlan Center for School Mental Health.


  • Allison Bruhn, Executive Director, Scanlan Center for School Mental Health 
  • Maithreyi Gopalan, Assistant Professor, Education & Public Policy, Penn State University
  • Lindsey Schluckebier, Curriculum Coordinator: K-12 Counseling & Health, Iowa City Community Schools
  • Shannon Lea Watkins, Assistant Professor, Community & Behavioral Health

This virtual event is free and open to all, but registration is required.

Facing Suicide in Iowa

In this Iowa PBS documentary, meet two Iowa families who lost their sons to suicide. They share their stories to create awareness in hopes of preventing others from going through the same heartbreaking experience. Experts talk about about the signs to look for in young people contemplating suicide, examine methods of prevention, and discuss what the state of Iowa is lacking in regards to mental health services.

Learn more and watch the documentary.

Kognito Suicide Prevention Program

Kognito is an online, interactive role-play simulation program for University of Iowa students, faculty, and staff that builds awareness, knowledge, and skills about mental health and suicide prevention. It prepares users to lead real-life conversations with fellow students and colleagues who are in distress and how to connect them with the support they need.

Explore the Kognito Program.