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  • Philippe Buhlmann

    Department focuses on mental health of graduate students

Proactive initiatives highlighted in C&EN cover story

The University of Minnesota (UMN) Department of Chemistry's proactive work on mental health issues is highlighted in an article on the front cover of the Aug. 7, 2017, edition of the American Chemical Society’s Chemical & Engineering News (C&EN). The article, “Grappling with graduate student mental health and suicide: the stress of grad school means that open discussions and training are vital,” was written by Jyllian Kemsley C&EN senior editor. She shares the story of a Scripps Research Institute, CA, graduate student who committed suicide in 2016, and also writes about warning signs, what to do/how to help, and efforts undertaken by universities to promote mental health. 

Kemsley writes about the efforts of UMN Chemistry Professor Philippe Buhlmann who has made "it his mission to promote mental health" such as initiatives to help students be successful in graduate school. The article highlights the work of the Chemistry Department’s Community of Chemistry Graduate Students (CCGS), which includes an interview with CCGS Chair and Graduate Student Evan Anderson, to reduce stress, foster discussions about mental health, encourage students to talk with each other and seek help, and have fun together and build community. 

Kemsley's article also includes a link to Chemistry Professor Christopher Cramer's video in which he talks about his own struggle with depression during graduate school.

You can read more about the work of the CCGS on page 20 of the December 2016 edition of ChemNews. There is an article on Professor Buhlmann in Access U that focuses on his work as a mental health advocate.