A 35-member team of Kline students and their friends and relatives took part in the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention’s Out of the Darkness Community Walk.
The team, which included members of several law school organizations, raised more than $3,000 for the Oct. 2 event.
3L Shelly Chauncey, who organized the team, said she wants to help remove the stigma of mental health burdens for law students and legal professionals.
“It’s important to support people who may be struggling in an environment that’s extremely challenging,” Chauncey said.
Chauncey has played a central role in organizing events at the law school that shine a light on the importance of seeking help for depression, anxiety and other mental health struggles.
“Shelly seized this issue and brought it to light within the law school community,” said Professor Nancy Kraybill, director of the Academic Skills program. “She’s been a real force in raising awareness of mental health in law school.”
In 2015 and 2016, Chauncey organized panel discussions featuring representatives from Lawyers Concerned for Lawyers, the Scattergood Foundation, the Drexel Counseling Center and practicing attorneys.
Chauncey was also invited to discuss students’ mental health issues at an annual roundtable discussion with deans of students and student-affairs professionals from area law schools, Kraybill noted.
For her part, Chauncey voiced gratitude to the law school for hosting events that encourage students to seek help for mental health issues. In 2014 and 2015, the law school invited Lawyers Concerned for Lawyers Executive Director Laurie Besden to meet with students in confidential, closed-door conversations.
“I’m proud to be part of a community that values the mental health of its students and works to promote an awareness of the challenges that students in this profession can face,” Chauncey said.
Besden agreed, saying the law school is “very active in awareness and makes their resources accessible and known.”