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14th Annual Depression on College Campuses Conference
March 9-10, 2016
Ann Arbor, Michigan

Call for Proposals

Proposals are now being accepted for the 14th Annual University of Michigan Depression on College Campuses Conference, which will take place March 9-10, 2016 in Ann Arbor, MI. You are invited to submit proposals for workshops, concurrent sessions, and poster displays relating to the conference theme of “Interpersonal Relationships and Student Mental Health” (working title).

Each year the Depression on College Campuses Conference hosts attendees from over 50 colleges and universities from across the nation for a focused review of recent research and practical advances in our understanding of depressive illnesses in college students. A Conference Planning Committee, co-chaired by Dr. John F. Greden, Dr. Daniel Eisenberg, and Dr. Todd Sevig, and including members from across the University of Michigan campus, will review and select all workshop, concurrent session, and poster display proposals. The submission deadline is September 4, 2015.

Conference Learning Objectives

Depression among college students is an urgent public health problem. If we are to prevent the progression, chronicity, recurrence, and burden of depression, we must emphasize earlier detection, intervention, and ultimately, prevention.

Learning objectives and expected results for the conference participants are an improved understanding and ability to implement:

  • Best practices and model programs which demonstrate how fostering positive interpersonal relationships and strong support systems can help to improve student mental health and well-being;
  • Research which demonstrates the impact that connectedness, and the formation of healthy social relationships, can have on student mental health;
  • Best practices for prevention and intervention methods to address the effect that unhealthy relationships can have in contributing to stress, anxiety, and depression among college students;
  • Outreach models to reach students with depressive illnesses, or who are at risk of developing a depressive illness, in order to help these students to engage in treatment.


The conference attracts a multi-disciplinary audience of professionals working on college campuses, including:

  • Counselors and Counseling Center Directors
  • Psychologists
  • Psychiatrists
  • Academic Advisors
  • Student Affairs administrators and staff
  • Faculty
  • Parents
  • Students

Presentation topics

The 2016 conference theme is “Interpersonal Relationships and Student Mental Health.” (working title)

To this end, we are looking for presentations on model programs, evidence-based practices, and research studies that demonstrate how fostering positive interpersonal relationships and strong support systems can help to improve student mental health and well-being – and conversely, how unhealthy relationships can potentially have a negative impact on student mental health.

We are defining the term “relationships” very broadly, to include not only family, friends, roommates, romantic partners, faculty, and campus administrators, but also virtual relationships via social media and technology, relationships to organizations on campus, and the relationship that a student has with him/herself with regard to their feelings of self-worth, self-compassion, etc.

In conference proposals, we encourage consideration of various and diverse student populations, including students from low socioeconomic families; students from immigrant families; and first-generation students, among others.

Presentation Formats

Please review these descriptions to determine the format that best matches the content and scope of the material you would like to present. Proposals will be evaluated based on specific criteria, including relevancy to theme and expertise of presenters.


A three-hour workshop provides an opportunity to explore a given topic on a deeper level, or from multiple perspectives. These workshops must be interactive, engaging the attendees in facilitated group discussion and/or skill-building exercises to improve their knowledge and understanding of the given topic. Workshops may have multiple presenters, including individuals from different institutions, in order to provide a range of perspectives and expertise.

Workshops will take place in the afternoon on Wednesday, March 9 (tentatively from 2:15-5:15).

Mini-workshops are 90-minute sessions which give speakers and participants more time to delve into a given topic than is offered during a concurrent session, but are less intense than the 3-hour workshops in terms of participant interaction and depth/breadth of content presented.

Mini-workshops will take place in the afternoon of Thursday, March 10 (tentatively between 1:15-2:45).

Concurrent Session
Concurrent sessions are 75-minute sessions that provide an opportunity to introduce a model program, evidence-based practice, or research study relating to the conference theme. The presentations should be no longer than 60 minutes, as 15 minutes MUST be left at the end of the session for Q & A and discussion with attendees.

Concurrent Sessions will take place in the afternoon on Wednesday, March 9,  and in the morning (approximately 10:30-11:45) on Thursday, March 10.

Poster Session

You are invited to create a poster about a research study or model program at your university which relates to the conference theme, “Depression on College Campuses:  Interpersonal  Relationships and Student Mental Health.” Each presenter will have an easel and 25x30 poster board for mounting their poster.

Posters will be presented during a networking forum and reception to be held from 5:15-6:15 p.m. on Wednesday, March 9.

If you are a currently enrolled student, and your project is selected for presentation and you are traveling from outside of Ann Arbor, you will receive free hotel accommodations at the Hampton Inn South during the conference.

Proposal Submission

Please use this online form to submit a summary of your proposed workshop, concurrent session, or poster in 300 words or less. Your proposal summary must contain clearly defined learning objectives, an overview of the presentation content and format, intended audience, and a list of all speakers.

In addition, if you are proposing a workshop or concurrent session, please submit a separate brief description of your session (including session title) in 150 words or less. This description will be included in the conference program if your proposal is selected.
If you have more than one presenter, the lead presenter should submit the proposal on behalf of the entire group.

All selected speakers will receive free conference registration. Speakers are responsible for their airfare, hotel, and ground transportation expenses.

Please note that we will need copies of all handouts and slides three weeks in advance of the conference, to allow enough time to print copies for attendees who request a hard copy of the materials.

If you have any questions regarding proposal submission, or about the conference, contact Trish Meyer at

Proposal Submission Form

The deadline for proposal submission is September 4, 2015.

Selected presenters will be notified by October 2, 2015.