Holy Cross College is pleased to announce a transformative partnership with the JED Foundation (JED) to promote and protect student mental health and wellness. Supported by a generous grant from the Valinhos Foundation, Holy Cross College will collaborate over the span of four years with JED – a leading nonprofit organization founded in 2000 to “surmount the hurdles of shame and secrecy that prevent an honest discussion of mental health amongst teens and young adults.” Starting July 1, 2024, Holy Cross College will be established as a “JED Campus” and will begin a multi-year process of strategic planning and implementation of a robust mental health and wellness plan involving a community-wide commitment of administration, faculty, staff, and students.

According to the National Institute of Mental Health in 2021, young adults ages 18 to 25 in the United States have the highest rate of experience any mental health concerns (33.7%) compared to adults aged 26-49 years, and the highest rate of serious mental illness (11.4%). To counteract these statistics and improve mental health in American young adults, JED has established nearly 500 “JED Campuses” in the country across 40 states – now including Holy Cross. “The Valinhos Foundation is excited to partner with Holy Cross College in its efforts to support the mental health and well-being of its students and the community,” said Julie Veldman-Harris, Executive Director of the Valinhos Foundation.

Through the generosity of the Valinhos Foundation, and under the direction of the JED Campus Theory of Change, Holy Cross College will create a campus-wide system of support to its students so as to improve mental health and behaviors that lead to positive life outcomes which will have a ripple effect for a wide community  The partnership is part of a strategic effort to provide all students at Holy Cross with the resources and support they need to thrive both academically and personally.

This initiative is a proactive step toward addressing the growing need for mental health services in educational settings, particularly in the wake of increasing awareness of the importance of mental health among college students.

“Our partnership with the JED Foundation marks a significant milestone in our commitment to the well-being of our students,” said Dr. Marco Clark, the President of Holy Cross College. “We are deeply grateful for the support of the Valinhos Foundation and are eager to see the positive impact this grant will have on our campus community.”