IUS 4th Annual Out of the Darkness Walk

Students, faculty and community members walk to support suicide prevention


Candace Leilani

Students, faculty and community members walk in the Out of the Darkness walk to prevent suicide.

Candace Leilani, Staff Reporter

Saturday morning, Sept. 29, students, faculty and community members gathered around the clock tower on campus to support suicide prevention at the 4th annual Out of the Darkness walk, hosted by the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.

IU Southeast Counseling Services organized the event. Michael Day, director of personal counseling services, was also in attendance.

“Suicide is the second leading cause of death among college-age students and it is one of the most preventable,” Day said. “One of the main reasons people end up taking their life is because of a stigma or shame, feeling isolated and not feeling like they can’t talk about it. These events are meant to break that stigma, to let people struggling know that there are people who care and are here to help them.”

Walkers wore colored necklaces to outwardly share with others who they were walking for, whether it was for a family member or friend.

IUS students walked alongside staff members, people from the community and students from the University of Louisville. Jessica Theis, senior and president of the IU Southeast psychology club, walked for her high school principal who committed suicide.  

Theis said she was thankful for an event like this one to share the wish to prevent more people from taking their life.

“I think it’s an amazing event just to see all these people together for the awareness of suicide and having these people support us,” Theis said.