Representatives of the Department of Social Work at Misericordia University, Dallas School District, and regional medical and emergency responders recently collaborated on the Dallas High School Suicide Prevention Roundtable panel discussion for students at the high school.
The panel included Kori Britton, Wyoming Valley Alcohol & Drug Services; David Hage, M.S.W., L.S.W., C.-A.S.W.C.M., assistant professor of social work, Misericordia University; Tom Gilroy, psychology and sociology teacher, Dallas High School; Back Mountain Regional EMS Chief Chris Good, Gina Kotowski, police resource officer, Dallas School District, and Diane Sherman, guidance counselor, Dallas High School.
According to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, one person dies by suicide every five hours in Pennsylvania. Nationally, suicide is the leading cause of death among young people ages 10-14, and is the second leading cause of death for people ages 15-34.
Gilroy and Sherman worked together to expand a classroom lesson plan about Emile Durkheim, a French sociologist, social psychologist and philosopher. They expanded the classroom lecture by developing the suicide prevention roundtable discussion so students could gain access to information about identifying students who might need extra support and preventing suicide.
"Mr. Gilroy, Ms. Sherman and the Student Assistant Program team continue to serve as a resource for students who identify any personal concerns or peers who might exhibit any of the warning signs discussed during the panel discussion,'' said Hage. "Dallas High School and the panel of community professionals demonstrated leadership in making the discussion about suicide public.
"They also champion the message that people who experience the warning signs are not alone. There is always hope. And most importantly, help is always available,'' Hage added.
For more information about the Department of Social Work at Misericordia University, please call (570) 674-6400 or log on to www.misericordia.edu/socialwork. Founded by the Sisters of Mercy in 1924, Misericordia University is Luzerne County's first four-year college and offers 42 academic programs on the graduate and undergraduate levels in full- and part-time formats. Misericordia University ranks in the top tier of the Best Regional Universities – North category of U.S. News and World Report's 2017 edition of Best Colleges and also was recognized as a "Best Value'' school by the publication. The Princeton Review named Misericordia a 2017 Best Northeastern College.
Dallas High School recently held a Suicide Prevention Roundtable panel discussion for students at the high school. Participating in the program, from left, are David Hage, M.S.W., L.S.W., C.-A.S.W.C.M., assistant professor of social work, Misericordia University; Kori Britton, Wyoming Valley Alcohol & Drug Services; Gina Kotowski, Dallas Police Department; Tom Gilroy, Dallas High School, and Diane Sherman, Dallas High School. Absent from photo is Chris Good, Back Mountain Regional EMS.