Students share concerns, stories

Among the collage of fliers posted throughout campus were bright green pieces of paper with information about a new organization for students with mental disabilities.

According to Maureen Cronin, faculty advisor for the group, the fliers have gone a long way in recruiting members. “It has been an amazing turnout,” Cronin said.

The group’s first meeting was held Feb. 1. No registration is required. The group wants to welcome students and allow them to share concerns and stories similar to those of their classmates.

This student-run group’s main goals are advocacy, activism, educating people and being a support system for one another. Some of the disorders and disabilities the group recognizes include anxiety disorders, behavioral disorders, eating disorders, personality disorders, autism spectrum disorders, bipolar disorder, depression, schizophrenia and learning disabilities.

“My goal is to attempt to reduce bigotry, intolerance, and ignorance against the mentally disabled,” said founder Ryan Jones.

In order to become an official club, this support group for mentally disabled students had to be recognized by the Office of Student Life.

Kim Vance, Assistant Director of Student Life, said she is pleased with the group’s focus because it addresses a specific need of the student population on Northern Kentucky University’s campus.

Jones said he would like the group to host speakers and show movies that would increase understanding about mental disabilities.

Jones hopes this new group will generate the formation of similar clubs at colleges nationwide.