VISTAS Online is an innovative publication produced for ACA by Dr. Garry R. Walz and Dr. Jeanne C. Bleuer of Counseling Outfitters, LLC. Its purpose is to provide a means of capturing the ideas, information and experiences generated by the annual ACA Conference and selected ACA Division Conferences. Papers on a program or practice that has been validated through research or experience may also be submitted. This digital collection of peer-reviewed articles is authored by counselors, for counselors. VISTAS Online contains the full text of over 900 proprietary counseling articles published from 2004 to 2017.
Passport to Wholeness: The Effects of a Campus Mental Health Fair on Help-Seeking Attitudes
Lucinda C. West and Anita Knight
A university campus-wide event titled Passport to Wholeness was designed to increase awareness of health and wellness issues and decrease stigmas toward mental illness. A follow-up study of 375 students compared the scores on Fischer and Farina’s (1995) Attitudes Toward Seeking Professional Psychological Help-Short Form (ATSPPH-SF) between attendees and nonattendees. Attendees of Passport to Wholeness scored higher on help-seeking than non-attendees at the 90% confidence level; the difference was not enough for statistical significance. Participants were asked if they were more likely to refer to a professional after attending the event, resulting in a statistically significant difference between the attendees and non-attendees (attendees were more likely to refer). Stigma toward mental health was noted in the sample. Males scored significantly higher than females on the ATSPPH-SF, which is contrary to other literature. Lessons learned and keys to producing a successful campus-wide event are discussed.