Ross Szabo

An Honest, Humorous, and Relatable Approach to Mental Health

  • Topics:
  • Health & Wellness
  • Mental Health
  • Professional Development
  • Audiences:
  • University
  • Parents & Teachers

Fee Range: $5K-10K

Talking about emotions can be a challenge, but Ross’s brutally honest, relatable and humorous approach puts audiences at ease as they confront a difficult topic.

When Ross was a freshman in college, everything on the surface seemed to be fine. He was making friends, getting good grades and had a fun social life. However, no one could have imagined how many emotions he was suppressing. Ross was diagnosed with bipolar disorder at age 16, was hospitalized for attempting to take his own life during his senior year of high school, and like so many other freshman, just wanted to fit in. He tried to hide what he was feeling to convince everyone that everything was ok, but that can only last for so long. Ross’s story resonates with the millions of college students who are putting on a happy face to hide their true emotions.

Ross uses tasteful humor and insights to help participants understand common mental health conditions and individual differences. He also covers warning signs that students can look for in their friends and peers, as well as resources that can provide guidance in these sensitive situations.

Ross is NOW the CEO of the Human Power Project. He is an award-winning mental health speaker, writer, trainer and Returned Peace Corps Volunteer. Ross has spoken to more than 1 million students about the importance of mental health and provided a positive example to empower them to seek help. He received the 2010 Didi Hirsch Removing the Stigma Leadership Award, 2012 Changing Minds Award and had his advocacy work entered into the Congressional Record. He is the co-author of Behind Happy Faces; Taking Charge of Your Mental Health and a blogger for The Huffington Post.

LEARNING OUTCOMES:

  • Be able to define mental heath as how we address and balance all of the challenges in our lives.
  • Discuss the largest barriers preventing people from seeking help for their mental health.
  • Recognize the different mental health challenges students are experiencing.
  • Lessen the stigma surrounding mental health by hearing a first hand account of a person who is functioning well despite having a diagnosed mental health disorder.
  • Identify the steps that are necessary to change ineffective coping mechanisms.
“This was one of the most impactful programs we have brought over the years. His balance of humor and seriousness was really great. He had the students laughing and connecting with him but when he was talking about serious things, you could hear a pin drop in that room. It was pretty incredible. ”
—Drexel University
“The program had a profound impact on the students and staff that attended. Issues surrounding Mental Health are everywhere on campus. It was great to try and bring those out into the open and have students learn to support each other…Ross has a way of speaking to you that makes you feel comfortable immediately…He was wonderful to work with- very friendly, outgoing, funny and kind. ”
—Allegheny College
“Ross’s program was exactly what we were hoping to bring to campus. He was able to shed a light on mental health in a way that allowed students to open up about their own experiences with mental health, and we have already heard amazing testimony from students who have been inspired to seek treatment and to open up about their own mental health experiences. ”
—Truman State University

Interested in hosting Ross Szabo?

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