Monarchs THRIVE: Campus Suicide Prevention Resources


Text "START" to 741-741 or call 1-800-273-TALK (8255)

Suicide is the 2nd leading cause of death among college students and more than half of college students will struggle with a mental health condition. This website aims to:

  1. Increase awareness of warning signs for suicide and psychological distress
  2. Provide resources that can help during a mental health crisis
  3. Give an overview of ODU's campus suicide prevention efforts

Monarchs THRIVE is ODU's mental health social norms campaign. This social norms campaign focuses on: spreading awareness about mental health and suicide, normalizing conversations surrounding these topics, and promoting available resources and encouraging help seeking among students.

THRIVE is an acronym. See below for details about each component of THRIVE:

Physical distancing does not mean we are alone. Technologies such as Zoom, FaceTime, and messaging apps can help us stay connected. As you text, chat, or meet up online,talk about mental health. Ask your friends and family how they are coping with stress, anxiety, depression, or isolation. Talk about how you are coping. Being open about our mental health is part of how we can support one another.

The significant changes in the world will affect all of us differently. We can help each other by hearing others' needs. Check in with people in your support system (e.g., online or over the phone) to see how they are doing. Ask them what they need during this challenging time. Simply listening shows that we care.

As we talk about mental health and hear others' needs, we also want to recognize warning signs that a person may need professional help. Persistent negative mood most days could be a sign of depression. We should also look out for warning signs that someone may be at risk for suicide, which is the second leading cause of death in college students and young adults. Warning signs for suicide include talking about killing oneself, feeling hopelessness or like a burden to others, and feeling trapped or having no reason to live. Also recognize behaviors that might indicate suicide risk, such as increased use of alcohol or drugs, withdrawing from activities and social supports (friends and family), and engaging in "goodbye" behaviors (such as giving away prized possessions). If you recognize any of these warning signs or are concerned that someone might be thinking about suicide, ask them. Research shows that asking people if they are thinking about suicide does not increase their risk. Quite the opposite, it lets them know that someone cares, and it allows a chance to find help for them. If you or someone else you know is thinking about suicide, it is time to enlist help from others NOW (see resources in #6. Enlist help from others below).

Self-care is essential to health. Just as we must brush our teeth regularly to avoid cavities, our thoughts and feelings will be healthier if we are proactive about our mental health. Self-care can include a range of activities that help us feel balanced and refreshed. Negative emotions thrive off of unused free time. Using our free time to do things that matter to us is part of self-care.

  • Studying and working ahead on coursework, practicing a musical instrument, learning a new skill, playing video games, and cleaning and organizing are just a few options.
  • Maintaining physical distancing during activities may require some creativity, such as forming an online group to play games or study, or virtual volunteering.
  • Listening to podcasts or audiobooks during cognitive downtime, such as when doing chores, can help push away worry. Social interaction with people who treat you well is also important.
  • Sharing your feelings with others, journaling, or reading books by experts may improve your emotional well-being by improving understanding of yourself and your emotions.
  • Mindfulness meditation has been helpful for many people to learn to accept anxiety and to understand their thoughts and feelings.
  • Learning and practicing mindfulness is easier if you use an app, such as Headspace or Calm.

During times of stress, it is important that we don't forget to prioritize our most basic needsEating a nutritious diet can improve mood and immune system function. Getting enough sleep is essential for physical health, mood regulation, and clear thinking. Taking medications as prescribed is important to stay healthy and safe. During times of stress, be careful about alcohol and drugs that have negative mood effects. Exercise is particularly beneficial because it releases endorphins, which have mood-boosting effect.

If you are feeling depressed, anxious, or are thinking about suicide, it is important to reach out for help. You are not alone. There are science-based treatments that work. These include individual therapy, group therapy, and in some cases medication. Sometimes people think that asking for help is a sign of weakness. But seeing a therapist does not indicate weakness any more than seeing a doctor does. ODU Counseling Services is open and available for telephone consultation and crisis counseling (Call 757-683-4401, press option #1 to schedule an appointment, press option #2 to speak with a counselor right away). In addition, many therapists, including ODU Counseling Services, are offering teletherapy, which is therapy online using video conferencing software.


Spring & Fall:
Monday-Thursday: 8 a.m. - 7 p.m.
Friday: 8 a.m. - 5 p.m.

Summer & Breaks:
Monday-Friday: 8 am - 5 pm

Warning Signs for Suicide

If a person talks about:

  • Feeling hopeless
  • Having no reason to live
  • Being a burden to others
  • Feeling trapped
  • Unbearable pain

If a person shows these behaviors:

  • Increased use of alcohol or drugs
  • Looking for a way to end their lives, such as searching online for methods
  • Withdrawing from activities
  • Isolating from family and friends
  • Sleeping too much or too little
  • Visiting or calling people to say goodbye
  • Giving away prized possessions
  • Aggression
  • Fatigue

If a person seems to be feeling:

  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Loss of interest
  • Irritability
  • Humiliation/Shame
  • Agitation/Anger
  • Relief/Sudden Improvement

Individuals who die by suicide often exhibit one or more warning signs through their words, behaviors, and/or moods. Learning about the risk factors and warning signs for suicide can help identify those at risk and save lives.

(Courtesy of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention)

Need Help?

If you are thinking about harming yourself or attempting suicide, tell someone who can help right away:

  • Call a family member, friend, or trusted person.
  • Call your therapist or mental health provider.
  • Call your doctor's office.
  • Contact one of the free, 24-hour crisis resources listed below to speak with a trained crisis counselor (see the Crisis Resources tab).
  • Go to the nearest hospital emergency room.

If you have a family member or friend who is suicidal:

  • Do not leave them alone.
  • Try to get the person to seek help immediately from a mental health professional, other health provider (e.g., their doctor), or the nearest hospital (see the Crisis Resources tab below).
  • Take seriously any comments about suicide or wishing to die, even if you do not believe they will actually attempt suicide. Communicating suicidal thoughts or urges is a sign of distress.

Contact one of the free, 24-hour crisis resources listed below to speak with a trained crisis counselor.

  • National Suicide Prevention Lifeline
    • Free 24-hour hotline and online crisis network
    • Phone Hotline: 1-866-273-8255
    • Online chat
    • For Deaf & Hard of Hearing: 1-800-799-4889
    • Website
  • The Trevor Project LGBTQ+
    • ​​​​​​​Phone Hotline: 1-866-488-7386
    • Text to Chat: Send "START" to 678-678
    • Online chat
    • Website
  • Crisis Text Line
    • ​​​​​​​Free 24-hour crisis chat resource
    • Text HOME to 741741
  • IM Alive
  • Substance Abuse Treatment Referral Hotline (SAMHSA)
    • ​​​​​​​Phone Hotline: 1-800-662-HELP (4357)
    • Website
  • National Sexual Assault Hotline (RAINN)
  • National Domestic Violence Hotline
    • ​​​​​​​1-800-799-7233
    • Online Chat
    • Text LOVEIS to 22522
  • National Teen Dating Abuse Helpline
    • ​​​​​​​Phone Hotline: 1-866-331-9474
    • Website
  • National Runaway Safeline
  • Now Matters Now

Available Resources

*If you are in crisis, see the Crisis Resources tab above in the "Need Help?" section.

  • ODU Counseling Services is available! Call 757-683-4401, press option #1 to schedule an appointment, press option #2 to speak with a counselor right away.
  • To find a provider in the Hampton Roads area, see the "Off-Campus Referral Network for Counseling Services" tab in the "Available Resources" section.
  • Find a tele-provider for mental health:
  • Are you concerned about a student or member of the ODU community? Submit a report here.

  • ODU Military Connection Center
  • Veterans Crisis Line
    • Call: 1-800-273-8255 (press 1)
    • Text: 838-255
    • Chat
  • DOD Safe Helpline 
    • Anonymous, confidential hotline for DoD community members affected by sexual assault 
    • Call: 877-995-5247
    • Chat
  • Counseling services are available for military veterans and their families through the Cohen Clinic at the Up Center. You can schedule an appointment and ask about telehealth options today:
  • Be There for Veterans
  • VetSuccess on Campus (VSOC) Program
    • The VSOC Counselor program is a partnership between the US Department of Veteran Affairs and Old Dominion University to assist students with military affiliation to make a smooth transition to college life and to successfully complete their educational programs.
    • Contact Jerry Roth, Vet Success Counselor, at or (757) 683-7114

View our referral network of off-campus counseling services in the Hampton Roads area.

Supporting Health of Military-Affiliated Students at ODU: Important information for faculty/staff about how to create an inclusive environment for military-affiliated students can be found here.

*This work is supported by a Garrett Lee Smith Campus Suicide Prevention Grant (Grant# H79SM080472) from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). The view, policies, and opinions expressed are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect those of SAMHSA or HHS.

For Urgent/Crisis Support

Please call 757-683-4401, press OPTION 2. This line is available to all ODU students 24/7/365.

Mental Health Crisis Line: Call or text 9-8-8