Minding Your Mind Creates Mental Health Education Program for Athletes

With the loss of seasons, practice, the gym, connection, comradery, and structure due to academic and league shutdowns during the pandemic, student-athletes have been struggling with the loss of identity that often comes with a team experience. In response, Minding Your Mind created a program that promotes conversations around resilience and specifically addresses coping with these changes.
Led by director of corporate programs and young adult speaker Andrew Onimus, “This is Hard: Finding Your Way” is a conversation about finding hope and building resiliency during a time of individual and collective struggle. A former Division III student-athlete himself, Andrew is able to share his story through this common experience. This program has been in high demand for college athletic departments as well as middle school, high school, and club teams. To date, Andrew has presented more than fifty programs to athletic departments and teams, and spoken to student-athletes and staff at nearly 30 colleges and universities. “It is not a weakness to need help,” emphasizes Onimus. “Sharing relatable stories to encourage others is a powerful way to start the conversation. Participation in these workshops is typically voluntary, yet I’ve seen huge turnouts and amazing interaction. That reaction is extremely validating to what Minding Your Mind is trying to accomplish in filling this need.”
Here is a small sample of testimonials about this program:
“Andrew’s story is both engaging and meaningful, and speaks to the athletic staff and teams we oversee. Conversations about mental health are never easy. As a former Division III student-athlete, his experience and recovery proved to be empowering and hopeful among our students and staff.  I would recommend Andrew and other resources from Minding Your Mind without hesitation.”
Jack Shafer, Director of Athletics
Widener University (PA)
“I can’t thank you enough for speaking with my team tonight. The texts and emails I received shortly after from the team just reinforced how important this conversation is and that you have a special gift in your ability to connect with others. You are inspiring and we are all so grateful for your time.”
Karen Henning, Head Women’s Lacrosse Coach
Colby College (ME)
“Just a quick email to express our appreciation for the presentation last night. Both of you have the gift of impact, and although I know this takes a lot of hard work…you are naturals at connecting with college students. Thank you for staying up late and allowing this to work with our Pacific Coast time frame. We will be sure to share your organization with our conference counterparts and are willing to be a recommendation contact for you if ever needed. Take care and keep up the impactful work!!”
Jennifer Childress-White, Assistant Athletic Director/SWA
Pacific Lutheran University (WA)
“I am writing to say thank you for an amazing presentation. You are so relatable and real and your story is very powerful. I’ve already had some of the girls text me letting me know how much they appreciated your talk. It’s great to know that you reached them. I’m sure you will be getting calls from others here at Tufts!”
Martha Whiting, Head Women’s Soccer Coach
Tufts University (MA)
“Thank you so much for your engaging and powerful Zoom with our team last night. I appreciated you sharing your story, the message of not being alone, it gets better, and the benefits of accepting help when necessary. Your honesty and vulnerability were much appreciated, and I think your message resonated with many of our players. Kate will follow up with you soon, but I can’t thank you enough for Zooming in with our team last night.”
Alice Lee, Head Women’s Lacrosse Coach
Williams College (MA)
“I wanted to share some information with you that was very beneficial for us at Lourdes. Andrew and his MYM staff did a terrific job connecting with our student-athletes during his presentation about mental health concerns/awareness in athletics. They spoke to the staff at 9 am and the student athletes at 9 pm on the same day. FYI- I have no financial benefits by sharing this information, it was a helpful tool for us and I wanted to pass the information along.”
Janet Eaton, Athletic Director (in an email to her colleagues)
Lourdes University (OH)
If you know of a team, club, or department that would benefit from this type of program, contact Andrew Onimus at andrew@mindingyourmind.org.

College & University Athletic Presentations
 2020-2021 Academic Year

Arcadia University (PA)
Berry College (GA)
Bloomfield College (NJ)
Colby College (ME)
College of Wooster (OH)
Eastern University (PA)
Gettysburg College (PA)
Kings College (PA)
Lebanon Valley College (PA)
Lourdes University (OH)
Neumann  University (PA)
New Jersey City University (NJ) 
Pacific Lutheran University (WA)
Siena Heights University (MI)
Tufts University (MA)
University of Chicago (IL)
University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire 
University of Wisconsin-Stout
University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point 
Trinity College (CT)
Ursinus College (PA) 
Widener University (PA) 
Williams College (MA)
York College (PA)