Suicide is a huge problem in Alaska and working at a boarding school that has students from over 120 villages, it seems that everyone has been impacted by a suicide. I don’t know if the reasons behind the suicides in Alaska students are similar to the reasons for students at Ivy league universities, but recognizing when a student is depressed and creating an environment in which it is ok to get help are certainly important goals for teachers. It is crucial that students feel safe in expressing when they are stressed out or need some extra help. I think many suicides are probably very preventable if teachers, counselors, friends, or family new how depressed the person really was.
Social media has sort of taken the place of direct conversation and is a really great tool to effortlessly stay in tuned with people’s adventures. For the most part though, social media isn’t a platform though where people share how they are really doing or feeling. People only post photos they are proud of, or the happiest moments in their life. Because of this, I think people tend to misjudge how people are actually feeling and unfortunately some friends and family slip through the cracks. For this reason, it is especially important to take the time to have real conversations with people, ones where they open up and tell you what is actually going on with them.