Mental Health Training & Education Opportunities

Suicide Prevention Training

This pairing of online trainings is intended to increase faculty, staff, and graduate students’ ability to recognize and respond to someone who is experiencing thoughts of suicide, helping to get them connected to appropriate campus and community resources.  This offering consists of two parts:

  • Part 1: LivingWorks Start (1.5 - 2.5 hours)
    This evidence-based online training program introduces a four-step model for helping to keep someone safe from suicide and uses simulations and interactive videos to build and practice helping skills.  The training module is self-directed and is completed independently and at your own pace.
  • Part 2: A&S Webinar (1.5 hours)
    Completed after the Start training, this webinar introduces information and resources specific to U of T and the Faculty of Arts & Science, provides an opportunity to review the Start model, debrief the training, and address questions or concerns.  The webinar is facilitated by the A&S Mental Health Programs Officer.

This suite of training sessions is available at no cost to faculty, staff, graduate students and postdocs within the Faculty of Arts & Science. Undergraduate students are offered similar training though Student Life.  

To request this training or an A&S department or unit, please email Chad Jankowski,


Identify, Assist, Refer in a mostly Online World

Teaching and working online requires adapting our existing approaches for recognizing and responding to student mental health concerns. Building upon the Identify-Assist-Refer (IAR) model, this webinar explores how mental health challenges may present different online than in person, offers guidelines for determining appropriate responses, and presents strategies for making effective referrals.

To request a webinar for your department or unit, please email Caroline Rabbat, Director, High Risk, Faculty Support & Mental Health,


5 Ways To Wellbeing

Coping with heightened stress and anxiety, establishing new routines and dealing with uncertainty amid COVID-19 and social distancing can be emotionally and physically exhausting. Investing in practices that are protective of our mental health and wellbeing have never been more important.  Drawing on evidence from the study of wellbeing, this participatory webinar will explore a cluster of daily activities that promote resiliency and support us in feeling and functioning better.

To request a webinar for your department of unit, please email Caroline Rabbat, Director, High Risk, Faculty Support & Mental Health,


Burn Bright Without Burning Out (for Graduate Students)

Graduate students are often faced with unique challenges of balancing between schoolwork, family obligations, and financial responsibilities.  For those without effective ways to manage, these everyday stressors can possibly lead to experiences of burnout. Acknowledging the distinctive stressors faced by graduate students, this interactive workshop will identify what burnout looks and feels like, explore strategies of how to prevent burnout and maintain a sense of wellness, and build a support network so students can “burn bright without burning out”.

This workshop is opened to all A&S graduate students and postdoctoral fellows. To request a workshop for your department or unit, please email Caroline Rabbat, Director, High Risk, Faculty Support & Mental Health,


Workshops by Request

We are currently exploring opportunities to deliver these workshops in an online format. Please check back for updates.

As part of our commitment to supporting mental health within the Arts & Science community, the Faculty promotes mental health literacy through the provision and coordination of education and training opportunities. These workshops are available at no cost to all departments and academic units within the Faculty, and the content is tailored for particular audiences. Offerings include:

  • Identify, Assist, Refer (IAR): This mental health literacy training covers the distinction between mental health and mental illness, and provides strategies for recognizing when a colleague, student or loved one is experiencing a mental health challenge. This training prepares participants to be able to recognize when someone is experiencing a mental health challenge, offers strategies for having a helping conversation and provides techniques for making effective referrals to appropriate campus and community resources. (1.5-2 hours)
  • safeTALK Suicide Alertness Training: safeTALK is evidence-based training from Living Works that increases individual and community capacity to recognize and respond to suicide risk. safeTALK provides participants with the skills to help recognize when someone may be having thoughts of suicide, the tools and confidence to ask about thoughts of suicide in a direct and helpful way, and strategies for connecting a person with thoughts of suicide to a suicide intervention caregiver. All participants will receive a certificate of completion at the end of the training. (4 hours)
  • De-Escalating Potentially Violent Situations: Developed by the Crisis & Trauma Resource Institute, this workshop is designed to teach how to de-escalate potentially violent situations through assertiveness and interpersonal communication. The training will explore how anger and violence interplay, provide opportunities for self-assessment, describe the aggression-diffusing process, and provide tools and strategies designed to de-escalate potentially violent situations. (Full Day)
  • 5 Ways To Wellbeing: Coping with the rigour of a U of T curriculum, navigating complex university systems and adapting to new environments can be exhausting! Investing in being happy, healthy and well provides a foundation for achieving balance and sustaining success in university. This interactive session explores what it means to feel good and function well as a graduate student. Drawing on recent evidence from the study of well-being, you’ll be introduced to a cluster of activities that promote resiliency and prevent burnout so you can be at your best. (1-2 hours)

Other Offerings: Our mental health team can also develop presentations on a wide range of topics relating to issues management, mental health and overall wellbeing. Examples include:

  • Workplace Conflict
  • Effective Communication
  • Managing Difficult People
  • Imposter Phenomenon

To discuss training needs or request a workshop, please contact Caroline Rabbat, Director, High Risk, Faculty Support & Mental Health,