Counseling Services

Seize the Awkward Poster Contest


It’s a common myth that people who attempt or complete suicide show no warning signs. In reality, people who are considering suicide show a variety of warning signs that indicate they’re struggling and in need of help.

warning signs of suicide

Of course, knowing those warning signs isn’t helpful at all if no one is willing to talk about them.

Is it awkward to tell a friend you’re worried about them? Sure.

Is it awkward to ask someone outright if they’re thinking of hurting or killing themselves? Sure.

But awkward conversations can save lives, so we’re encouraging folks to “seize the awkward” and start a conversation with someone if they’re concerned. 

Having a bit of encouragement to seize the awkward definitely helps - which is where you come in.

We want YOU (yes, you!) to encourage your peers and fellow Winthrop eagles to Seize the Awkward and start difficult conversations about mental health by creating posters to be displayed on campus.  We’ll display all the entries in a pop-up gallery later in the semester before choosing three posters to be reproduced and posted around campus.


Frequently Asked Questions

What’s the incentive?

Aside from helping create a culture on Winthrop’s campus where we have awkward conversations (which is awesome in itself!), prizes are available for the top 3 posters (as determined by a panel of impartial judges).


What are the requirements for poster submissions? What should be on my poster?

Posters should be no larger than 18” x 24” and should be two-dimensional. Posters MUST feature the words “SEIZE THE AWKWARD” and cannot contain any offensive, inflammatory, or obscene language or images (bear in mind the diversity of Winthrop’s campus with regard to age, race, gender identity, sexuality, religion, national origin, and disability).

Beyond this, the poster design is entirely up to the designer(s) - it may contain people, animals, nature, abstract images, word art, or something else entirely.  We love to be surprised!


Who can submit a poster?

All currently enrolled Winthrop students are invited to submit.


When are submissions due and how do I submit a poster for consideration?

All poster submissions are due by Friday, March 6, 2020 at 12:00p.

Physical submissions can be dropped at the front desk of Center for Student Wellness on the 2nd floor of the Crawford Building – just remember to leave your name and contact information so we can get a hold of you.

More of a digital artist? That’s cool, too – send digital submissions (PDF preferred) to


Need some inspiration?

Check out the samples in the Poster Gallery.