Plans call for pilot Mental Health Clinic at ACC Eastview Campus

Austin Community College District (ACC) and the University of Texas-Austin Dell Medical School provided an update about their plans to launch a new mental health pilot program at ACC’s Eastview Campus during the regular ACC Board of Trustees meeting on Monday, May 9.

According to Monday’s presentation to the board, youth today are facing major challenges with one in five reporting feelings of depression and anxiety. However, major gaps in care persist for young adults.

Together, ACC and UT-Austin Dell Medical School hope to open the Amplify Center starting in fall 2022. The Center aims to provide early intervention for young adults experiencing mild to moderate mental health symptoms who are wanting and needing mental health support that they might struggle to access within the community.

According to data from the U.S. Surgeon General, in December 2021 the nation saw approximately 6,600 deaths by suicide among 10–24-year-olds. It’s the second most likely cause of death, and young adults are at the greatest risk.

“These numbers are startling and disturbing, and the pandemic hasn’t helped. Students are having a harder time finding help and quality care,” says Dr. Shasta Buchanan, ACC vice chancellor of Student Affairs. “Our goal is to get more individuals the right care and when they need it — when their symptoms are in their infancy.”

The Center is expected to serve at least 200 students in its first year with future plans to expand to additional student populations.

Planning for the Center is still underway. More details, including the types of services and resources that will be available at the clinic, will be shared.