College Family Helps Bring Vital Issue 'Out of the Darkness'

Published 09.22.2014

Student News
Faculty & Staff

A handmade remembrance in the Field of Hearts pays tribute to an absent classmate.Counselor Mary Lee L. Kelly (left) and Emma J. Sutterlin, an applied health studies: occupational therapy assistant concentration major from State College, are among the day's participants.Another Penn College group blends camaraderie and solidarity.College colleagues Judi L. Barr (left), senior account in financial operations, and Shawnalee E. Miller, Career Services secretary, snap a selfie.Step by step and hand-in-hand, walkers literally take strides toward their goal.A wide-ranging representation of the Penn College community – students and employees alike – contributed to record-setting results at Sunday's sixth annual Greater Lycoming County “Out of the Darkness” Walk for Suicide Prevention and Awareness at Indian Park in Montoursville. Each fall, family members, friends and colleagues walk several miles together in hundreds of communities across the country to prevent suicide, raise awareness, and end the stigma that surrounds depression and other mental disorders. With each step, walkers endeavor to save lives, honor loved ones lost to suicide and financially support the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention's mission. The Montoursville event raised more than $19,000 toward its $20,000 goal; donations will be accepted online through Dec. 31. The local effort also made history by attracting about 350 walkers, far exceeding the approximately 260 in 2013. Among the Penn College participants were the Students Making a Contribution organization and a PCT Cares team of Student Affairs professionals. Students and employees were also represented in other groups, such as the Junior League and the Williamsport/Lycoming Young Professionals; a number of college counselors staffed the Serenity Tent; and the walk was again coordinated by Joe Miller, manager of audio-visual services, and his wife, Donna.
Photos provided by Caleb G. Schirmer, a technology management student from Sugarloaf, and Shawnalee E. Miller