THE FULL PICTURE: Raising Teens in an Achievement Driven Culture
Posted on 01/26/2020
What: Kate Fagan, New York Times Best-Selling Author of What Made Maddy Run will share how achievement culture affects teens, as well as the need to increase communication on the transition from high school to college.

When: Thursday, February 27, 2020, 6:30PM

Where: William Mason High School Auditorium
6100 Mason Montgomery Road
Mason, OH 45040

Why: Over the past few years, Mason High School students have increasingly expressed concerns about the negative impact of achievement-driven culture on students’ mental health. Two years ago, the high school launched Hope Squad - a mental health awareness and peer-to-peer suicide prevention group. This year, the district established a new mental wellness team that includes four new mental wellness staffers, and partnerships with outside agencies for additional support for students and families. Students and staff strongly believe that community awareness of teens’ mental health issues is imperative, and the MHS Hope Squad has worked to create a community event where national author, Kate Fagan, will share ways to recognize signs of students at risk, and to reduce stigma around having conversations about mental health.

Fagan is the author of What Made Maddy Run. It is the heartbreaking story of Maddison Holleran, a college athlete who attended the University of Pennsylvania. On Instagram, Maddy’s life looked ideal: she was the star athlete, a very bright student, and a beloved friend; however, her photos hid the reality of someone struggling to go on. The students of Hope Squad felt strongly that Fagan’s messages would resonate with the student body as they work to raise mental health awareness and reduce the stigma that surrounds those conversations.

Students within the district have shared that they experience heavy amounts of stress and pressure, and sometimes find it challenging to reach out for help when needed. Through her experiences competing as a collegiate athlete and writing What Made Maddy Run, Fagan can provide valuable insight on the transition to college, the effects of digital communication, and the lack of conversation about mental health and suicide.

Fagan published an article and video about Maddison Holleran in July of 2017, before her book was released. To this day, her video is the most-watched video on ESPN.

This event has graciously been supported by local donations, and sponsors include 1in5.  

Katie Fagan
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