Mental Health Partnership Case Studies

Norfolk State University

“The Clinician”

  • Coaches Training – Before AthleteTalk launched at NSU we provided a virtual mental health and wellness training for Spartan coaches. The training provided an opportunity for coaches to meet AthleteTalk staff, discuss mental health issues, and fully understand our passion for athlete and coach mental health.
  • Team by Team Onboarding Meetings – Embedded NSU mental health clinician Brandy Gresham onboarded teams by meeting with each team, introducing the app, and ensuring all the athletes on the team had their account information. In addition, Ms. Gresham coordinated the meetings with AthleteTalk; in case an athlete needed their account information sent while in the meeting. This strategy led to a higher user download rate and laid the foundation for NSU’s above average user engagement rate.
  • Media Involvement – Ms. Gresham also conducted two media interviews.  Brandy conducted interviews with WAVY TV 10 (Norfolk, VA) and The Virginia Sports Hall of Fame and talked about how her athletic department is using AthleteTalk. This generated interest in AthleteTalk in the NSU athletics ecosystem and enhanced the administrators familiarity with the app.
  • Enhanced Communication – Ms. Gresham has utilized every opportunity to reach out with questions and allowed AthleteTalk to ask questions about user engagement and to share ideas about future features.
  • Athletic Event Attendance – Visiting competitions and interacting with student-athletes, staff, fans, and parents, is an important aspect of inoculating mental health and wellness into athletics. AthleteTalk visited the NSU vs. Hampton University football game and had the chance to engage in community with the mental health clinician, volleyball coach, faculty members, men’s basketball coach and several other athletics/campus stakeholders.
  • NIL Influencer Partner – NSU is participating in the AthleteTalk NIL Influencer Program.

Texas Southern University (TSU)


  • Academic Support Involvement – If your athletic department does not have a mental health clinician embedded in athletics, ensuring an administrator from academic support is involved is instrumental. At TSU, Kim Evans (Assistant AD/Academic Enhancement), Arneecia Romeo (Academic Advisor) and Kirsten Pitts (Academic Advisor)have a great deal of practice wisdom in student-athlete academics and development and a tremendous rapport with Tiger student-athletes. These attributes have contributed to TSU rapidly moving up the days engaged leaderboard.
  • Campus Visit/In Person Presentation – During AthleteTalk’s visit to TSU, we had an opportunity to speak with about fifty percent of Tiger student-athletes. The presentation was a great touch point because we had a chance to share our passion in-person, it provided an opportunity to talk with TSU about the mental health challenges they face, and the chance to have several intimate conversations with coaches. The visit provided AthleteTalk with some insight into how to better engage Tiger student-athletes.
  • Posts Around The Academic Facility – TSU AthleteTalk administrators posted 11 x 8.5 flyers with information on the app and a QR code that enabled Tiger student-athletes to download the app and request their account information be resent by AthleteTalk.
  • Social Work Intern – TSU Athletics and the TSU Department of Social Work partnered to host a social work intern in athletics. This is a hybrid placement AthleteTalk provides ½ of the supervision – with a focus on app engagement and referrals to AthleteTalk mental health providers.
  • Enhanced Communication – TSU utilizes every opportunity to share what is happening with student-athlete mental health and wellness.
  • Administrator Posts – TSU is doing an incredible job of administrator posts and we believe that is one of the reasons this partner is leader the way in user posts.
  • NIL Influencer Partner – NSU is participating in the AthleteTalk NIL Influencer Program.

State University of New York – New Paltz

“Student-Athlete Involvement”

  • Mental Health Subcommittee – @mh_newpaltzsaac is doing an incredible job of contributing to the New Paltz/AthleteTalk mental health partnership. Under the direction of their chair, Morgan Wooley, the subcommittee has created a bulletin board (see below), creates social media posts, reposts post from AthleteTalk on school social media, keeps AthleteTalk informed of athletic department mental health events, provides consultation to the New Paltz AthleteTalk administrator, and more. The New Paltz mental health subcommittee is part of the “glue” that helps New Paltz and AthleteTalk stay connected.
  • Campus Visit – AthleteTalk provided a talk to two large groups of male and female student-athletes and afterwards toured the athletics facilities with two members of the mental health subcommittee. AthleteTalk also talked to campus administrators to discuss a larger vision for the within the state system.
  • Mental Health Bulletin Board – The Hawks Mental Health Subcommittee developed a mental health bulletin board with several resources. AthleteTalk contributed some flyers and stress balls. The bulletin board was concise and plentiful and well positioned. With these attributes student-athletes can discretely look at the resources and avoid any stigma associated with mental health in sports.
  • Strong Lead Administrator – Matt Giufre, Assistant Athletic Director and Head Women’s Volleyball Coach is very involved in athlete user engagement, building bridges with the mental health subcommittee, acting as a liaison to the Athletic Director, as well as providing ideas on all facets of the partnership and processes.  Coach Guifres’ positive optimism is incredibly constructive.