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mtvU Takes Aim at Suicide Prevention

mtvU teamed up with The Jed Foundation to launch Half of Us, a suicide-prevention campaign aimed at college students.

MTV Networks’ college service and the nonprofit college suicide prevention charity said the campaign name was taken from research showing that nearly one-half of college students have suffered from severe depression.

The network’s linear channel and Web site (www.mtvu.com) “are both symbolically eclipsed by a gray haze -- reflecting that a large percentage of the college audience is overwhelmed and not sure where to turn,” mtvU said.

mtvU will also debut several new public-service announcements on the topic, commercial free, and launch HalfofUs.com (www.halfofus.com), an online resource center that “informs and engages college students on mental health and is shaped by its users.”

“Stigma kills,” mtvU general manager Stephen Friedman said in a prepared statement. "The alarming statistics speak for themselves, showing that college students are masking the toll stress and depression are having on their lives. We're offering up Half of Us as a means to help our audience come to terms with the magnitude of this problem and confront it. We're proud to join with the Jed Foundation in this effort -- working to de-stigmatize mental health and reach those college students who need help most.”