Boise State Launches Mental Health Initiative #BroncoBOLD

September 11th, 2019 | by CollegeAD
Boise State Launches Mental Health Initiative #BroncoBOLD


“This is an issue, not only on our campus but across the country. We talk a lot about the student-athlete experience and how important it is to prepare these young people for life after college, and mental health is an important component.”- Curt Apsey, Boise State AD

Boise State Athletics is launching #BroncoBOLD, a mental health initiative for student-athletes, coaches, and staff.  The department plans to release videos on social media and, which will include information for on- and off-campus resources relating to mental health.

“You know, a lot of people go through struggles; we want to provide the resources for them to have a successful life,” Apsey tells CollegeAD. “This was an initiative brought on by student-athletes. It’s important to them and to us as a university.”

#BroncoBOLD is designed to encompass and showcase all aspects of the department’s mental health programming for student-athletes, coaches and staff.

“This is a campus-wide issue, not just athletics,” explains Marc Paul the Associate Athletic Director/Sports Performance, Health and Wellness for Boise State. “We now have a full-time mental health professional for the athletes. Stephanie Donaldson is employed by athletics and was a former college athlete herself, she’s just been a rock star for us.”

The initiative’s mission statement was drafted by Boise State student-athletes with the help of Stephanie Donaldson, director of athletic performance/psychology. The #BroncoBOLD mission is built on three pillars:

–Reduce Stigma: #BroncoBOLD will be the voice of change and create a culture of help-seeking and inclusion through personal stories and messages of strength. Collectively, the university will normalize conversations around mental health and reduce stigma.

–Raise Awareness: #BroncoBOLD will shed light on mental health by focusing on education and proactive prevention. The movement will grow awareness and knowledge of mental health issues through such forums as social media, workshops and sponsored events and athletic competitions.

–Cultivate Resiliency: #BroncoBOLD will utilize a strengths-based approach, emphasizing the boldness we all possess. They encourage every student to share healthy coping skills, engage support systems, and use internal and external resources.

“The Bronco Bold initiative is something that is really student-athlete driven,” says Paul. “Even the name itself comes from students; they formed a seven-member committee. It really represents the emphasis we have as a department on mental health and how we will address it in the future.”

To help launch the initiative Bronco student-athletes and coaches will wear helmet stickers, hair ribbons, and patches throughout this weekend’s competitions in support of  #BroncoBOLD.

This story first appeared in The NightCap, CollegeAD’s evening newsletter. The NightCap delivers the day’s college athletics news in simple bullet points, giving you what you need to know in just a few lines. Get The NightCap today.

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