SHARON, Pa. — Penn State Shenango’s eighth annual Stamp Out Stigma mental health awareness event is addressing anxiety and depression during a program to be held at 12:15 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 13. The event is designed to bring important information, awareness, and personal stories about the importance of caring for one’s mental health to the forefront of our community.
This year’s Stamp Out Stigma keynote speaker is William Doan, professor of theater in the College of Arts and Architecture on the University Park campus of Penn State. Doan is a former artist-in-residence for the Penn State College of Nursing and was named the Penn State Laureate for 2019-20. He is the creator of "The Anxiety Project," which is a combination of more than 300 of his own drawings and live performance in which she shares personal anecdotes about living with anxiety and depression along with research-based information on mental health. His 2021 short film "Inhale, Exhale, Draw" has been selected by seven film festivals and has garnered two awards. He is also an author, a playwright, a past president of the Association for Theatre in Higher Education and a recent inductee into the College of Fellows of the American Theater.
In his talk during this year’s Stamp Out Stigma program, Doan will share his personal story and discuss the impact of the pandemic on people’s anxiety and depression. In addition, his talk will focus on the vulnerability that many continue to feel in regards to acknowledging these common conditions.
“Anxiety disorders have been identified as the most common mental illnesses in the U.S., affecting 40 million adults age 18 and older,” said Doan. “Nearly one-half of those diagnosed with depression are also diagnosed with an anxiety disorder. Seventeen million adults had a major depressive episode last year. I was one of them.”
The community is invited to attend this free program, though registration is required. Visitors can register at shenango.psu.edu/stampoutstigma. Location information will be provided upon registration.