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Health and Medicine

Share ideas in the 2024 POV Challenge

In the competition, student teams will suggest ways to improve mental health and prevent suicide.

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As part of , Carolina Across 100 invites students to submit their points of view on the topics of mental health and suicide prevention for the .

Their submissions of research and ideas will support communities in the 24 counties participating in “Our State, Our Wellbeing,” a program launched in 2023 to improve mental health and reduce suicide in North Carolina.

To participate in the third annual POV Challenge, teams of two to five students must register by Feb. 16 and submit a response to one of three prompts by Feb. 25. The top two entries will receive a $500 award.

Launched in 2021, is a five-year pan-university program coordinated by the School of Government’s ncIMPACT Initiative and the Carolina Engagement Council. The program exemplifies the University’s mission to “enhance the quality of life for all people in the state.” It aims to partner with communities in each of North Carolina’s 100 counties to address their greatest challenges and opportunities.

“Students come to Carolina from communities across our state and beyond,” said Anita Brown-Graham, the director of ncIMPACT. “This POV Challenge invites all students to learn about issues impacting North Carolina and offers an avenue for them to share their findings and ideas with local leaders who are actively working on those issues.”

According to Michael Welker, community engagement director at ncIMPACT, worsening mental health was one of the most common challenges cited by communities across North Carolina in the program’s initial listening survey.

“The 2024 POV Challenge offers a unique opportunity for sharing research findings and creative ideas from a student perspective with North Carolina communities that are actively collaborating to improve mental health and reduce suicide,” Welker said.

Submissions can be in any form. The competition is designed to be inclusive, diverse and creative in the ways information and data is visualized and shared with communities. The prompts are based on the learning priorities for community teams participating in “Our State, Our Wellbeing.” They ask students to think about connection to their communities, ways to reduce stigma around mental health and suicide, and creative methods to connect their peers to the 988 crisis line.

Learn more and register for the . Submissions will be on display and winners will be announced at the at 5:30 p.m. March 1 at the School of Government.