Josh Rivedal

After losing a parent and grandparent to suicide and experiencing his own mental health struggles, Josh Rivedal dedicated his life to making sure people know that hope and healing are available to everyone. 

Topics

▪First Year Experience ▪Mental Health ▪Suicide Prevention

Keynotes

▪How to Live Mentally Well and Crush it During Difficult Times
▪The “S-Word” of College Mental Health
▪Building a Foundation for Your Mental Health
▪More Than a Foundation: Developing a Toolkit for College Mental Health and Suicide Prevention

 

 

 

Josh Rivedal uses the art of storytelling to talk about the important topics of mental health and suicide prevention.

Josh is no stranger to the struggles of battling mental illness.

After losing both his father and grandfather to suicide, Josh realized he was following the same pattern. From his depression, up to the time he contemplated suicide, Josh knew it was time to get help.

After experiencing the effects of mental illness, he’s ready to help student audiences overcome the stigma of mental health issues by becoming more supportive to those who are fighting their own battles.

Josh’s Bio

Joshua Rivedal is the creator and founder of Changing Minds: A Mental Health Based Curriculum and The i’Mpossible Project. He has spoken about suicide prevention and mental health across the U.S., Canada, U.K., and Australia. He wrote and developed the one-man play, Kicking My Blue Genes in The Butt, which has toured extensively throughout the world. His memoir The Gospel According to Josh: A 28-Year Gentile Bar Mitzvah, is on The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention’s recommended reading list.

His second book, The i’Mpossible Project: Volume 1—Reengaging with Life, Creating a New You, debuted #1 in its category on Amazon in January 2016. There are currently five books in the i’Mpossible series. He is trained in human capital management with an emphasis in coaching from NYU, in suicide prevention coursework QPR and ASIST, and the teacher’s edition of emotional intelligence at Yale University’s Center for Emotional Intelligence. His original coursework on suicide prevention is taught in Washington State to dentists, pharmacists, and occupational therapists. He is a co-author of three journal papers, one on the trajectory of the survivor of suicide loss, another on the art of living with chronic illness, the third on surviving trauma. Joshua is a standup comic and amateur cook, and lives in Philadelphia.

Promotional Materials

To help you promote your event with Josh, CAMPUSPEAK has created promotional templates you can use. In this folder, you will find resources for social media, a promotional poster for printing, and press photos you can use for your event.
Link to Promotional Materials

Logistical Materials

In-Person Event AV Needs (PDF)
Speaker Introduction (PDF)

Recently, one of my close friends opened up to me and admitted he was contemplating suicide. He’s talking with the counselors at the college, and he’s over the hump now. Anyway, he came to see your presentation, and it really spoke to him (this was before I knew). He told me that he talked to you a little after the show and that you even picked up on something that might be wrong. I wanted to let you know that I’m grateful for the work you do, and the message you send.

Confederation College, ONT, Canada

You presented the topic in such a unique way, and the information was so important for students to learn. They all left with the tools they need to help a friend or help themselves should they ever find themselves in a dark place.

H.C.

Furman University

See What People Have to Say!

Your keynote was absolutely unbelievable and exactly what this campus needed. It was the perfect mixture of comedic relief with a serious tone that made the talk innovative and unforgettable.

L.P. – Student Government, Wake Forest University

Keynotes

How to Live Mentally Well and Crush it During Difficult Times

In this 60 minute keynote, author and college mental health specialist, Josh Rivedal talks about his college days, his mental illnesses (anxiety and depression), and overcoming personal crises in a format that creates an emotional connection between students and the powerful message that it’s okay to talk about mental health and that it’s possible to live mentally well during difficult times and beyond. Students will learn about what mental health is and is not, how to stay socially connected and prevent loneliness, how to mitigate symptoms of anxiety and depression, coping skills, and how to help oneself or a friend if in a mental health breakdown or suicidal crisis. Students will also receive campus, national, and BIPOC resources for student mental health.

Learning Outcomes

As a result of attending this program, students will learn:

  • what mental health is and is not,
  • how to manage and mitigate symptoms of anxiety and depression,
  • how to stay socially connected and prevent loneliness,  
  • potential stressors and triggers for a mental health breakdown,
  • how to help themselves or a friend if having a mental health breakdown,
  • coping skills, and
  • campus, national, and BIPOC resources for help with mental health and mental illness
The “S” Word of College Mental Health

Stigma. A 6-letter word loaded with harmful repercussions for a college student—shame, silence, a breakdown in relationships, academic collapse, physical maladies, and even suicidal ideation. What’s the opposite of stigma? Vulnerability, honesty, and storytelling.

Seven-time author, standup comic, and mental health innovator, Josh Rivedal, will discuss vulnerability, the mask we wear, and how we can be more open so we can have more positive mental health outcomes. In The “S” Word…Josh uses a light touch of humor and shares his story of mental health struggles. He gives actionable tools and tips for openness and vulnerability so attendees can realize their full potential around mental health and beyond.

Mental health isn’t always easy to talk about, and the recovery is never a straight line—but the capacity for hope, healing, acceptance, and action lies within all of us.

Learning Outcomes

As a result of attending this program, students will learn:

  • how to be more authentic, honest, and vulnerable in any setting
  • how to ask for help of any kind whenever they need it
  • how to prevent mental health breakdowns
  • how to reduce the severity of a mental health breakdown
  • how to manage mental health challenges like depression and anxiety
Building a Foundation for Your Mental Health

As a college student, trying to navigate academics, relationships, a career path, and being away from home can be difficult—but it can also be taxing on your mental health. Studies have shown that 1 in 5 college students live with a mental illness but only 1 in 3 are receiving any help, all because of stigma and a lack of proper education. In this keynote, Josh sets the stage for the very basics of mental health. He’ll share a little of his comedic and poignant story about living with depression and overcoming big obstacles in life. He’ll also talk about how to build the very basic foundations of positive mental health. Josh will also provide resources for mental health, mental illness, and suicide prevention.

Josh takes a difficult subject and breaks it down in an engaging manner, to help students build a foundation for long-term, sustainable, positive mental health. This keynote is introspective, funny, inclusive, and interactive; and is perfect for a general mental health week or month, a leadership workshop, peer education training, diversity, and Fraternity and Sorority Life. Josh also does a version of this program for professional staff training.

As a result of attending this program, students will learn:

  • he differences between mental health and mental illness, 
  • what mental health is and is not, 
  • how we can decrease stigma around mental health, 
  • basic coping skills, and
  • how paying attention to our mental health can improve and shape our lives.
More Than a Foundation: Developing a Toolkit for College Mental Health and Suicide Prevention

This workshop session is designed to build on the fundamentals learned in “Building a Foundation for Your Mental Health.” Josh will give a brief review of the basics of mental health and go into further depth so students, leaders, and faculty can create their very own toolkit for positive mental health and to prevent suicide on campus and beyond.

“More Than a Foundation…” combines lecture, storytelling, humor, group discussion, and improv theater to enhance the emotional development of students, leaders, and faculty by providing hope, help, and life-saving skills. This workshop is perfect for a general mental health week or month, a leadership workshop, peer education training, diversity, and Fraternity and Sorority Life. Josh also does a version of this program for professional staff training.

Learning Outcomes

As a result of attending this program, students will learn:

  • the definition and examples of mental illnesses and situational mental health crises,
  • tools and tips to manage a mental illness and/or a situational health crises,
  • how to help or support a friend, peer, or loved one with a mental illnesses;
  • how to develop healthy coping skills,
  • how to eliminate unhealthy coping skills,
  • how to cultivate healthy self-talk and self-coaching,
  • the importance of support systems and who and what can be included in a support system,
  • what suicide is and what causes suicidal thinking and attempts,
  • the signs and symptoms of suicidal thinking,
  • how and where to get help for oneself or a friend in suicidal crisis, and
  • how to intervene if a friend is in suicidal crisis.

*A version of “More Than a Foundation…” is available as a curriculum with in-depth materials available so students or faculty can teach this programming throughout the school year