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CSP’s Charlie Academy Highlighted Nationally


University News

Concordia University St. Paul’s chapter of Charlie Life and Leadership Academy has been highlighted nationally by the C. Charles Jackson Foundation and Charlie Life & Leadership Academy for its creative use of online leadership program content centered around mental health and support.

The Charlie Life & Leadership Academy shared results from a recent survey of over two thousand college students. Of those students, nearly 53 percent of college students report feeling anxious. What’s more, 47 percent of students indicated that they could have used more support and mental health resources from their college or university. 

Back in the fall of 2020, CSP began providing Charlie Academy’s online suite of career-prep and leadership courses.

The team installed Charlie Academy courses on their Blackboard LMS platform, so faculty and staff could easily select the courses that were right for their program. These programs included: 

  • Leadership Programs and Training
  • First-year Seminar
  • Athletic Teams
  • Residence Life Training
  • Student Employment

One CSP faculty member considered how the Charlie Academy courses could bridge that gap to support students that struggle with high anxiety and stress. 

Erin Simunds, CSP Physical Therapy Department faculty, noted that she’s been “stunned by the number of students with high anxiety and stress.”

Simunds considered how the Charlie Academy courses could support her students by building certain wellness skills. With that in mind, Simunds incorporated courses like “Becoming Resilient, Failing Faster and Better”, and “Growing Through Conflict” into her curriculum.

“The student groups who have experienced the Charlie Academy content are flexible, cohesive, and able to adapt in ways I haven’t seen before,” Simunds shared. “The Charlie Academy courses have added that ‘shot’ for students to develop the skills of resilience and adaptability themselves. They’ve helped students grow in this area.”

Students, like Libby Thom, agree, expressing how much value they find in the experience.

“These courses have opened the door to allow me to talk about real things with friends and classmates at school, in the very place where real stuff happens—things like failing and how everyone gets knocked down sometimes,” Thom noted. 

To learn more about CSP’s Charlie Academy, please visit and check out several free courses.