On Tuesday, November 28, 2023, Camden County College hosted United States Surgeon General Dr. Vivek Murthy on his national “We Are Made to Connect” Tour on our Blackwood Campus. The Surgeon General spoke with actor and mental health advocate Daniel Ezra, who stars as Spencer in the hit show, All American about how individuals can address loneliness, encouraging participants to reach out to one another, strengthen their relationships, and, ultimately, build more connection in their daily lives.
“As an educator, I have learned that the connection you create with your students is as vital to their success as your teaching. At Camden County College, we each have a role to play in the success of our students, and we all have an opportunity to make a connection that could serve as their lifeline. Dr. Murthy’s visit today could not have come at a better time as we visit upon the holiday season where feelings of isolation and loneliness can often become magnified.” said Dr. Lovell Pugh-Bassett, President of Camden County College during her welcoming remarks Tuesday in Civic Hall.
First Lady of New Jersey, Tammy Murphy, offered remarks on the importance of youth mental health, and the work that is being done by the Governor’s Office to ensure there are supports in place for young New Jerseyans who are in need of mental health support, including “expanding access to behavioral health care in schools, training school staff in mental health first aid, and becoming the first state in the nation to provide free tele-mental health services for college students”.
“Loneliness is an increasingly troublesome issue that we are seeing take a toll on people across the country but specifically, college aged people,” said Camden County Commissioner Deputy Director, Ed McDonnell. “Dr. Murthy’s tour aims to start conversation about these difficult topics to encourage our young people to reach out and connect with those around them to avoid adverse effects of loneliness.”
The “We Are Made to Connect” Tour aims to inspire students and communities across the country to build community and incorporate moments of connection into their daily routines. Our relationships with one another can be a source of healing that can help us all live healthier, fuller, and more productive lives.