Suicide Prevention

Vikings Campus Suicide Prevention Project

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Berry Hope 988

The Counseling Center would like to offer everyone on the Berry College campus hope. Hope saves lives as suicide is very preventable. We also want everyone to know that a new crisis number is available. If you are in a mental health crisis, you can call 988 and be connected with a crisis counselor. It is very similar to 911, but for a mental health emergency. If you are in Georgia, you can also still connect with the Georgia Crisis & Access Line (GCAL) by calling 800.715.4225 or download the MyGCAL app to text or chat with a GCAL Crisis Specialist.

QPR stands for Question, Persuade, Refer

QPR stands for Question, Persuade, Refer. This training program is offered to faculty, staff and students, which builds skills for recognizing and responding effectively to suicide warning signs. QPR is easy to learn, takes only one hour and is free to students, faculty and staff.

If you would like to learn more about how to help someone in a suicidal crisis, consider attending a QPR Suicide Prevention Training.  To schedule training for your class, department or student organization, please use the link provided below.  Majonica Askew, LPC, the Suicide Prevention Project Director, will receive your request and work with you to schedule a training.

QPR Suicide Prevention Training Form

Suicide Awareness

It is not possible to list all of the potential warning signs that may suggest that a person may be thinking about harming themselves. The following list identifies some behaviors/symptoms to look for and how you can help someone in need.

Suicide Warning Signs

  • Talking about suicide
    A person may make direct statements such as “I want to kill myself” or indirect statements such as “this world would be a better place without me.”
  • A pattern of changes in behavior
    Significant increase or decrease in sleep, significant increase or decrease in eating, decreased interest and participation in activities, a significant decrease in academic performance, increased engagement in impulsive risk-taking behavior, decrease in mood, or a sudden marked increase in mood.
  • Feelings of hopelessness
    The person conveys the belief that things will never get better.
  • Preparations for death 
    Purchase of or possession of the means to kill oneself, giving away one’s possessions or writing a will.
  • A recent experience of a major loss
    The recent death of a family member or close friend, the recent loss of anything of significance to a person, such as the loss of a job or the ending of a relationship.
  • Alcohol and other drug abuse
    This is particularly of concern when a person has a tendency toward impulsive behavior when under the influence of these substances.
  • History of previous suicide attempts
    The attempt may have been made by the individual or there may be a history of others in their lives who have died by suicide.

Ways to Help Someone in a Suicidal Crisis 

If you have an immediate concern about the mental health of another student, please call the Berry College Counseling Center 706.236.2259 and ask for a Same Day Solution Session.  You can come in by yourself to consult about the student or bring the student with you to the appointment so they can talk to a counselor. 

If the person is not willing to come to the Counseling Center, and you are concerned that they actively want to die by suicide, please contact the Berry College Campus Police at 706.236.2262 to do a welfare check on the student. If they live off-campus then the nearest local law enforcement office can be contacted to do a welfare check. Your nearest emergency room can also provide a mental health evaluation for anyone who is considered at immediate risk of dying by suicide.

If you have the concern that a person may be thinking about killing themselves, but are not sure, consider doing the following:

  • Find a safe place to talk to them
    It is important to find a place that will not cause you to feel interrupted, rushed, or overheard.
  • Let them know what you have observed
    Tell the student about behaviors you have noticed that have caused you to feel concerned about them.
  • Ask them directly
    While some may fear that this could cause a person to want to kill themselves, this is not the case. If a person is suicidal, talking about it can be helpful in that it helps a person to realize they are not alone, it can sometimes reduce their thoughts about harming themselves, and it can result in them getting the help they need.
  • Listen
    Many people underestimate the power of being heard. Providing a person a place to talk where they do not feel judged can sometimes help them feel less alone with their pain and can improve the likelihood that they will reach out and accept help from mental health professionals.
  • Do not put pressure on yourself to solve a person’s problems at that time
    This could give the impression that you think their pain is less significant than it is and that it can be relieved by one change in their lives. It suggests that you just don’t get it. While a person may want to problem solve with a therapist or someone else later, they often initially just need to be able to express what they are thinking and feeling.
  • Do not try to cheer them up
    They will feel disconnected from you.
  • Do not try to provide reassurances
    Providing reassurances will cause them to think that you really don’t understand.
  • Do not argue with the person’s feelings
    Statements such as “You really don’t feel that way” will only further distance you from the person.
  • Take care of yourself
    When you are worried about the potential suicidal ideation of another person it is important that you also take care of yourself. You may need to seek out emotional support for yourself or may need to ensure that you are taking time for your own relaxation and stress reduction.
  • Don’t keep suicidal communication a secret
    If a person is experiencing suicidal thoughts, it is more important to get that person help than to hold their secret. It may help to let the person know that you would rather have them angry at you than to have them think that you are not taking their concerns and their life seriously.

What to do After Getting Help 

After you get help for a person who is suicidal, check in with them to see how they are doing. It may feel uncomfortable for them the first time they see you after they have made their disclosed their suicidal thoughts to you. Reaching out to them can help them resume feeling comfortable around you.

This can also be a very stressful time for you. Make sure you get the support you need from trusted others in your life or a professional.

Crisis Resources

During office hours, M-F, 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. if you are in a mental health crisis, please call the Counseling Center at 706.236.2259 and request a Same Day Solution Session.

If you are in a mental health crisis after hours and need to speak to a counselor immediately, Georgia Crisis & Access Line is available 24/7, including weekends and holidays. Call 800.715.4225 or download the MyGCAL app to text or chat with a GCAL crisis specialist.

If this is an emergency: call Berry College Campus Police if you are on-campus (706.236.2262), call 911 if you are off-campus, or go to the nearest emergency room (Atrium Health Floyd Medical Center or Advent Health Redmond Medical Center if you are in the Rome area).


  • Crisis Text Line- Text: HELLO to 741-741
  • Trevor Project Lifeline(for LGBTQ+ students) 866.488.7386
  • Steve Fund(for BIPOC students) Text: STEVE to 741-741
  • Trans Lifeline 1.877.565.8860
  • National Suicide Prevention Life Line: 800.273.TALK (8255)
  • Depression Hotline - 888.273.5174
  • Self-Harm Hotline - 877.455.0628
  • National Domestic Violence Hotline - 800.799.7233
  • RAINN(Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network - 800.656.4673
  • 1 in 6– for men who have experienced sexual abuse or assault
  • ULifeline: Mental Health Resources
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