The Student News Site of Colorado State University

The Rocky Mountain Collegian

The Student News Site of Colorado State University

The Rocky Mountain Collegian

The Student News Site of Colorado State University

The Rocky Mountain Collegian

Print Edition
Letter to the editor submissions
Have a strong opinion about something happening on campus or in Fort Collins? Want to respond to an article written on The Collegian? Write a Letter to the Editor by following the guidelines here.
Follow Us on Twitter
Five Things We Learned Delivering Over Half a Million Orders for NoCo Restaurants
Five Things We Learned Delivering Over Half a Million Orders for NoCo Restaurants
November 8, 2023

  In May 2019, Nosh began as a humble restaurant co-op with just three people. When the pandemic hit in March 2020, while many businesses...

ASCSU works toward improving student mental health

ascsuAssociated Students of Colorado State University have made it a goal this year to create programs to help better students’ mental health through programs and partnerships around campus.

ASCSU Director of Health Mackenzie Whitesell said she works with promoting student health and connecting students with resources.


“We are really trying to amp up some of our mental health efforts this year,” Whitesell said. “And really creating a community of care where people feel like they are important and that they can be connected on campus.”

This year, ASCSU established a mental health committee within Whitesell’s position. The committee meets weekly and brainstorms ways to help improve student health on campus, and works to implement them.

The committee is working on planning a plaza event centered on mental health for later in the semester. They are also working on Body Acceptance Week, a program many groups on campus participate in during February.

Whitesell said one of the bigger projects the committee has worked on is a media and anti-stigma campaign, that will be released after spring break. The campaign focuses on removing the stigma from mental illness.

“We worked on it all fall … Getting feedback from the health network and from students,” Whitesell said. “It’s important to do that very carefully and very intentionally.”

Whitesell said the biggest part of the campaign is to humanize students that have mental health conditions.

“A lot of times people can be alienated … judged or discriminated against if they are dealing with something,” Whitesell said. “(The campaign will) help people see that people are more than their mental health conditions.”

Samantha Guinn, ASCSU president, said the goal of this campaign is to remove the negative connotation from mental illness to make it easier and more acceptable for students to ask help when they need it.

ASCSU Deputy Chief of Staff Lauren Wester is working with Whitesell on an excused absence policy.


“The proposed policy is going to create a uniform standard for students facing extenuating circumstances,” Wester wrote in an email to the Collegian.

With this policy, students would document their situation with Case Management, and would have to make appropriate actions to make up classwork, Wester said.

There is no excused absence policy currently, but students can work with Case Management to handle excessive absences in extenuating circumstances.

The policy will be presented to the Committee on Teaching and Learning on Feb. 17 for formal evaluation. The appropriate steps will be taken from there, Wester said, but there is no timeline for when it will be enacted.

ASCSU began the Chronic Health Mentoring Program this year, which connects students dealing with chronic health conditions with peer mentors to help them feel more comfortable on campus.

Whitesell said mentees are welcome to join the program throughout the year, and she encourages students dealing with chronic mental health conditions, such as depression or anxiety, to join the program.

“A lot of times there’s a lot of overlap between mental and physical conditions that I think people don’t always see,” Whitesell said.

Whitesell said she also works with a group called Cam’s Crew, which promotes positive behavior around drinking habits and alcohol at sporting events.

Guinn said that the mental health committee has been working with the CSU Health Network to reach out to students and make sure students are aware of the resources CSU offers.

“We are always trying to be there for the students, and do whatever we can to make their experience the best it can be,” Guinn said.

Collegian City Beat Reporter Sady Swanson can be reached at or on Twitter at @sadyswan.

Leave a Comment
More to Discover

Hey, thanks for visiting!
We’d like to ask you to please disable your ad blocker when looking at our site — advertising revenue directly supports our student journalists and allows us to bring you more content like this.

Comments (0)

When commenting on The Collegian’s website, please be respectful of others and their viewpoints. The Collegian reviews all comments and reserves the right to reject comments from the website. Comments including any of the following will not be accepted. 1. No language attacking a protected group, including slurs or other profane language directed at a person’s race, religion, gender, sexual orientation, social class, age, physical or mental disability, ethnicity or nationality. 2. No factually inaccurate information, including misleading statements or incorrect data. 3. No abusive language or harassment of Collegian writers, editors or other commenters. 4. No threatening language that includes but is not limited to language inciting violence against an individual or group of people. 5. No links.
All The Rocky Mountain Collegian Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *