October 9, 2019 | by Ben Pigg
Briar Cliff University has come up with a new anonymous way for students to vent to each other through a service called PostSecret.
PostSecret is a postcard that was created in 2005 which allows people to explain how they feel without actually telling someone whom it is. It first started as an ongoing community mailproject in which people mail their secrets anonymously on a homemade postcard.
Jeanette Tobin is the director of counseling services at Briar Cliff who first heard of the idea on the news and decided to bring it to the campus community while adding a twist to it, renaming the service PostSecret University. Once she got the idea, Tobin proposed it to student development and the library who each pitched in funds to get the service going. “We brought it to this college level and decided to add resources to it,” said Tobin. Those resources allow students to connect with each other.
Students who live on campus can find the postcard in their mailbox postcard. When students get the postcard the instructions are fairly simple: Write whatever you may be going through on the back and without naming yourself, turn it into the mailroom.
However students living off campus can find postcards in Bishop Meuller library, Java City, and Heelan. “With those three places we should be able to reach most people,” said Tobin.
After students submit their postcards it’ll be displayed on campus either in the library or in Heelan. “The goal is to get a couple hundred then by April put them all in the atrium to have a big display, then we’d invite the Sioux City community to view them as well.”
Tobin believes the post secret movement will benefit the campus community in numerous ways. Some of those ways include improving mental health among students. “It’s basic mental health that we all feel and in a way it’ll allow students to know that they’re not alone,” said Tobin.
Angela Houk is head of public and research services at Bishop Mueller Library who is one of many supporters on board for PostSecret University. “It’s a good resources because we all have secrets that we don't want to share with other people and this is a way to get out and off your chest what you may be going through,” said Houk.
Houk believes a good amount of students will contribute to PostSecret University keeping the momentum going once the word gets out further.