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Informing the  Berea and Baldwin Wallace University Communities Since 1913

The Exponent

Informing the  Berea and Baldwin Wallace University Communities Since 1913

The Exponent

Informing the  Berea and Baldwin Wallace University Communities Since 1913

The Exponent

New Active Minds room provides a safe space for mental health

Former Active Minds president, Emily Muench, faced many obstacles while trying to obtain a space for BW’s chapter of Active Minds.
Pictured+is+Active+Minds+new+room+for+mental+health.
Bailey Croft
Pictured is Active Minds new room for mental health.

After years of effort, Baldwin Wallace’s chapter of Active Minds, a mental health group focused on destigmatizing mental health, opened their own room on campus near the end of the spring 2023 semester. 

Former chapter president and current co-advisor, Emily Muench, started Baldwin Wallace’s chapter of Active Minds in the fall of 2019, five weeks into her freshman year. Muench was president of the chapter until she graduated last May.  

Cat Hughes, current chapter president, said Muench was the catalyst for Active Minds to acquire a room on campus. 

“I’ve wanted a room for a long time, so it’s very exciting that we finally have our own space,” Muench said. “We’re not providing counseling, we’re not therapists, but we’re a safe space … and people know if they’re having a bad day, they can go in this room and be with one of our officers.”  

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Muench said that their main obstacle was finding an available room in the first place considering the small size of the BW campus.  

Muench said that originally, she had wanted a space in the basement of the Union, but it ended up being used by another organization. Muench reached out to individuals from various buildings across campus as well as administration and found a usable space during her senior year.  

“Earlier this year, I talked with Joe Tarantowski, another co-advisor of Active Minds, because I knew he knew Loomis really well … and he actually found the room, and so then it was just a matter of okay, here’s the exact room number I want,” Muench said.   

Hughes said that the new Active Minds room is a safe space for students who are struggling and need someone to talk to.  

“A big thing is there really still are no mental health policies on BW’s campus for students or faculty. And that I’ve been complaining about and advocating for … since my first year [at BW],” Muench said.  

Muench, and other members of the Active Minds board, have been advocating for mental health support on campus since Active Minds’ inception at BW.  

“You know, it’s been really difficult,” Hughes said, “We’ve tried meeting with a ton of different people about implementing mental health days for students. That’s been like fighting tooth and claw with administration.” 

“I know that mental health is, I would say, not taken super seriously on this campus,” said Julz Baltzly, marketing director of Active Minds, “I think we’re doing really good work bringing that to people’s attention … our mission is to create that open dialogue around mental health, and help reduce the stigma.” 

Active Minds has been on BW’s campus for five years and continues to push for more mental health support on campus, Baltzly said.  

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