The movement to bring awareness to mental illness, while important year-round, is particularly relevant during May–Mental Health Awareness Month. Millions of people live with a mental health condition including individuals who work in Student Affairs. Yet, as we discuss mental illness concerns on campus, we often primarily focus on the needs of students, and less on the needs of student affairs educators.

On this episode of Student Affairs Live, co-host Heather Shea Gasser discusses how we can address the stigma around mental health in student affairs through awareness, education, and action with ACPA Commission for Counseling and Psychological Services (CCAPS) Chair, Dwaine Campbell, as well as Kristen Abell and Sue Caulfield, co-founders of an online series dedicated to highlighting mental illness in student affairs professionals – Committed. Abell and Caulfield worked with other student affairs professionals to publish Committed to Mental Health in Student Affairs, an e-book collection of stories from these professionals previously featured on The Student Affairs Collective.


Episode Host

Heather Shea Gasser

Heather Shea Gasser

Heather Shea Gasser’s career in student affairs spans 16+ years and five different campuses, and involves experience in many different functional areas including residence life, multicultural affairs, women’s centers, student activities, leadership development, and commuter/nontraditional student services–she is a true Student Affairs Generalist. Heather is currently serving as the assistant director of RISE (Residential Initiative on the Study of the Environment), a living-learning community at Michigan State University while also a full-time doctoral student in MSU's HALE (Higher, Adult, and Lifelong Education) Program. She completed her master’s degree in Student Affairs in Higher Education from Colorado State University in 2000. She currently serves as the Director of Membership Development for ACPA-College Student Educators International and blogs for Feminists in Student Affairs. Connect with Heather on Twitter at @heathergasser


Kristen Abell

Kristen Abell is a web developer at the University of Missouri-Kansas City and has been in student affairs for fifteen years, in a variety of roles. She’s worked primarily in housing and women’s centers at three different universities over that time. She has a bachelor’s degree in psychology, women’s studies and English and a master’s in social welfare from the University of Kansas. Kristen currently serves on the ACPA Digital Technology Task Force, and served previously as the Information Technology Coordinator for the IV-West Region of NASPA and webmaster for the NASPA Technology Knowledge Community. Kristen has been blogging since 2006, and she is a cofounder of and blogger at the Student Affairs Women Talk Tech collaborative blog. She is also the cofounder of the #SAtech weekly chat on Twitter. She has presented both regionally and nationally on technology in student affairs. In addition to technology, Kristen blogs frequently about the issue of mental illness, especially depression. She edited and contributed to the Committed e-series and book on mental illness in student affairs with colleague Sue Caulfield. Connect with her on Twitter at @Kristen_Abell


Dwaine Campbell

Dr. Dwaine Campbell is a psychologist and the Coordinator of Psychology Practicum Training at the University of Michigan Counseling & Psychological Services in Ann Arbor, Michigan. In his role he provides clinical services to students, supervises mental health trainees, coordinates practicum training, develops programs for various student populations, and facilitates outreach services on the university campus.  Dr. Campbell earned his Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology from Michigan State University and completed his post-doctoral training at the University of Michigan.  He currently serves as the Chair for ACPA’s Commission for Counseling and Psychological Services (CCAPS). Connect with him on Twitter @DwaineCampbell


Sue Caulfield

A visual content weaver, Sue Caulfield is in her seventh year as a student affairs professional. She mixes business with pleasure by displaying her creative nature on and off the job. Sue enjoys podcasting, blogging, reading, drawing and painting. She is the co-founder of the eSeries, “Committed”, illustrator of “The I’s Have It: Reflections on Introversion in Student Affairs”, and a proud Etsy shop owner. Sue currently serves as the inaugural Assistant Director of Student Affairs at the Hofstra North Shore-LIJ School of Medicine at Hofstra University. You can find her by following her #suedle posts, on or on Twitter @_suecaulfield.