Four members of Project Green outside at a table during Fresh Check Day

With mental health becoming increasingly more important for college students, one student group at Dean is committed to raising awareness and destigmatizing conversations as they gear up for their annual event – the Project Green Showcase.

“Project Green is a club that strives to advocate for the mental health and wellbeing of students and the campus community,” explained Syra Pandey ’24, a Dance major, Psychology minor and president of Project Green. “We meet weekly to discuss new, creative, informative ways to spread mental health awareness across campus and share the resources we have at Dean College.” The club does this by sharing information about mental health, tabling weekly and holding events for the campus community.

One of those events is the annual Project Green Showcase, which is a way to share Project Green’s mission and raise awareness for mental health through the arts. To prepare for the showcase, Project Green opens up a call for any student across campus to submit a piece of art that shares their own stories and experiences related to mental health.

“Whether that be poetry, singing, photography, dance, or acting, we want all kinds of art in our show and in our art gallery to share their stories and inspire others with their art,” said Syra. “It is our hope that this will help raise awareness and destigmatize conversations around mental health. We want the show to showcase how art is a beautiful thing and how students are able to use it to express their feelings and experiences.”

The student-submitted artwork can either be performed live or displayed in the art gallery during the showcase. The evening is an opportunity for students to not only share their stories and experiences with mental health, but also to share their hard work and talents with the community, something Syra is looking forward to most about this year’s showcase.

“It is so inspiring to watch the students create something they are passionate about and see their hard work performed on stage,” she said. “I cannot wait to see all the different types of artwork we have between the showcase and the art gallery, and see all the hard work both Project Green and the students have put into the show itself.”

While the showcase is a one-night only event, Project Green hopes the message it shares and the conversations it sparks have a much greater impact.

“I hope this show will help raise awareness and destigmatize conversations around mental health,” Syra said. “We wanted to encourage students to submit art to be able to share their experiences with others and then continue to spread awareness everywhere. I hope that all the work that is in the show will help people learn that mental health is an important topic of conversation in our society today and how it affects a variety of people. You may not know who is going through something, and we want to show how some people use art to be able to talk about something crucial like this.”

The Project Green Showcase takes place this Saturday, November 12, 2022 at 4:00 p.m. in the Guidrey Center. Admission is free for students with their ID and $5 for guests (cash only). For more information, visit Today@Dean.