A Brief Peer Gatekeeper Suicide Prevention Training: Preliminary Examination and Individual Factors that Influence Outcomes




Rallis, Bethany

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Suicide is the second leading cause of death among college students. Despite the availability of mental health resources on college campuses, less than half of college students who are contemplating suicide seek professional help. Suicidal students are more likely to reach out to their peers for help but peers are generally not equipped with the skills needed to provide appropriate assistance. Thus, training students to serve as peer gatekeepers (i.e., recognize suicide warning signs, appropriately respond to concerns, refer suicidal youth to appropriate care) in suicide prevention efforts on college campuses holds great promise. The purpose of this dissertation project, funded by the GMU Center for the Advancement of Well-Being, was to: test the preliminary efficacy of a brief peer suicide gatekeeper training program (Mason Cares) through a joint collaboration between the Psychology Department and Counseling and Psychological Services (Aim1); and examine characteristics that predict effective peer gatekeeping behavior (Aim 2).



Psychology, College students, Gatekeeper, Prevention programs, Suicide