During my five years at HBCU Central State University in Wilberforce, I had a hard time dealing with depression. According to the Oxford dictionary, depression is feelings of severe despondency and dejection. But there are lots of things you can do to beat depression. “The suicide rate for Black Americans of all ages was 5.25 per 100,000, nearly half of the overall U.S rate of 10.75 per 100,000 between 2000 and 2004. Black males from ages 20 to 24 had the highest rates of suicide in the Black population, averaging 18.18 per 100,000,” according to the CDC, reported Diverse Education. Cicely Evans, a licensed professional counselor at Southern University at Baton Rouge, said, “The hardest part is getting students through the door,” adding “Many are afraid of the stigma attached to mental health treatment. Students do not want to be labeled as crazy or weak.”

“Students at HBCUs may be at more risk for suicides and other mental illnesses, because we are not talking about them. Black campuses haven’t experienced a large-scale catastrophe like the one at Virginia Tech, but these issues are still prevalent,” said Tracy Reed, a registered licensed professional counselor intern.

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Depression can happen at any time and everyone goes through it—sometimes you may not even know that you are in a state of depression. But it is beatable. Here are some tips to beat depression this year at college.

Working out

Working out is one of the quickest ways to beat depression. It is also probably the best thing you can to start your morning before classes. Make sure you create time, if not find time to utilize the free fitness center in the student union on campus.

Writing in your journal

Try writing in a journal. They are relatively cheap and personal. One cool thing about journals is the fact that you can always see where you are going.

Writing in a journal is relaxing and fun.

Talking to a friend

It is true, the hardest thing to do sometimes is to talk about our problems, especially to others. But this can be one of the most satisfying things, because the friends you made on campus so far cares about you and want to see you happy. Do not be afraid to talk to someone, you never know where your blessings can come.

It is never easy, but there are lots of things you can do to get rid of feeling down and out in addition to my tips above.


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