Aug 09, 2016

Columbia State To Host Suicide Prevention Conference

Saving Lives in South Central Tennessee Conference August 26

Update: 8.22.16 - Conference registration deadline has been extended through Tuesday, Aug. 23

(COLUMBIA, Tenn. - August 9, 2016) - - -
Columbia State has partnered with the Tennessee Suicide Prevention Network to host the "Saving Lives in South Central Tennessee" conference Aug. 26.

The event will feature a variety of presentations related to suicide prevention, which will include: suicide prevention strategies within community colleges, depression and suicide among older adults and suicide prevention among veterans.

The conference offers multiple opportunities for education and understanding about suicide that could potentially save lives in the community.

Dr. Sandra Perley, Columbia State professor of nursing and TSPN representative of the south central region, will be presenting her research in suicide prevention strategies in Tennessee community colleges.

"I am a survivor," Perley said. "I lost my husband to suicide four years ago. You never really have the right words to say to anyone. All you can do is give them love."

Perley was appointed to the Tennessee Suicide Prevention Advisory Council in 2015.

Perley and her daughter have participated in two suicide prevention walks in Nashville. To date, they have raised $1,500 for suicide prevention.

In 2014, approximately 42,773 people died by suicide; 945 of the victims were from Tennessee. Approximately 52,000 Tennesseans, between the ages of 18-29, consider suicide each year. Suicide has been a leading cause of death among college students for over 80 years.

The conference will take place in the Cherry Theater from 9 a.m. - 3 p.m. at the Waymon L. Hickman Building located on the Columbia Campus at 1665 Hampshire Pike. For questions about the "Saving Lives in South Central Tennessee" conference, contact the TSPN at 615.297.1077. Registration is $10 per person or $5 with student ID. To register, please visit The deadline for registration is Friday, Aug. 19. Spacing is limited to the first 200 registrants.

Dr. Sandra Perley

Photo Caption: Dr. Sandra Perley, Columbia State professor of nursing and TSPN representative of the south central region.

Columbia State is a two-year college, serving a nine-county area in southern Middle Tennessee with locations in Columbia, Franklin, Lawrenceburg, Lewisburg and Clifton. As Tennessee's first community college, Columbia State is committed to increasing access and enhancing diversity at all five campuses. Columbia State is a member of the Tennessee Board of Regents, one of the largest higher education systems in the nation. For more information, please visit

Tennessee's Community Colleges is a system of 13 colleges offering a high-quality, affordable, convenient and personal education to prepare students to achieve their educational and career goals in two years or less. We offer associate degree and certificate programs, workforce development programs and transfer pathways to four-year degrees. For more information, please visit us online at

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