Hi, How Are You Project and American Campus Communities Partner to Promote Mental Wellness among College Students across the Nation

AUSTIN, Texas–(BUSINESS WIRE)–lt;a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/acccares?src=hash” target=”_blank”gt;#acccareslt;/agt;–American
Campus Communities
(NYSE: ACC), the nation’s largest student housing
company, announced a strategic partnership with the Hi, How Are You
(HHAY) Project aimed at tackling issues of mental health among U.S.
college students. The partners will launch a training and awareness
program in October 2019 for American Campus communities located at more
than 70 universities.


The iconic Austin mural asking the ever-important question, “Hi, How Are
You?,” painted by musician and visual artist Daniel Johnston, motivated
founders Courtney Blanton and Tom Gimbel (music industry executive and
Johnston’s longtime manager) to encourage people to check in on one
another and talk openly about their struggles. The frog, made famous by
Kurt Cobain’s love for Johnston’s art emblazoned on his famous t-shirt,
has become an ambassador for mental health. With a focus to inspire
young people through music and art, the HHAY Project, founded only two
years ago, has reached maximum volume in a short time with a feature in
Billboard Magazine and coveted mention in Tim Ferriss’ “5 Bullet Friday”
e-mail newsletter among the extensive media coverage the young
organization has received.

Co-Founder Courtney Blanton was motivated by her own personal
experience: “As a college freshman, I lived in shame from my mental
health issues, hiding my Prozac in an Advil bottle and pretending that
everything was OK in public. After years of self-affliction, I learned
that healing came from openness. When I shared my personal story, others
were compelled to share their own. That life lesson inspired me to
create the Hi, How Are You Project with Tom. I am so pleased to announce
this special partnership with American Campus Communities in May –
Mental Health Awareness Month.”

According to the National Institute of Mental Health, suicide is the
second leading cause of death among college students, and one in five
students struggle with depression and anxiety. For most, it’s their
first time living on their own away from the support usually provided by
close friends and family.

Asking a student, “Hi, how are you?” is a simple step to start a
conversation about their well-being and let them know someone cares.
HHAY Project’s mission is to remove the stigma and open dialogue about
mental health. This mission will become a guiding tenet for ACC’s
residence life program, which offers events and information that promote
topics such as health and wellness, personal finance, and sustainability
to name a few. ACC’s student housing communities have served more than
1.25 million students at 120 colleges and universities across the U.S.
HHAY Project will develop a series of training videos and supporting
materials to teach how to recognize signs of mental distress and offer
resources and support for residents and ACC staff. Residents will have
access to peer-to-peer support programs, and events related to mental
wellness and self-care.

“We hope the Hi, How Are You Project will become an anchor to our
residence life program as students’ mental health and wellbeing
continues to be core to our values,” said Bill Bayless, American Campus
Communities CEO. “ACC was founded in an Austin dorm room at the Dobie
Center in 1993, the same year Daniel Johnston painted his mural across
the street, with the vision to create communities where students can
thrive in college. Over the years, we’ve seen heartbreaking loss at the
universities we serve as students weren’t comfortable reaching out for
support with mental health issues. We are fiercely committed to doing
what we can to help change the statistics. Good mental health and
wellbeing is absolutely critical, and our hope is that this partnership
will create a framework that raises awareness and creates a culture of
open dialogue on campuses across the nation.”

Each year on January 22, the Project hosts a worldwide “Hi, How Are You
Day,” an event aimed at educating people around the world about the
importance of mental health and well-being while promoting inclusion.
The centerpiece of the day is a free live-streaming concert with a
roster of acts playing covers of Johnston’s music. In 2019, the Hi, How
Are You Day concert at ACL Live at the Moody Theater in Austin, TX was
headlined by the Flaming Lips with a companion concert taking place in
Auckland, NZ.

In July 2018, ACC purchased the Goodall Wooten building, the structure
on which Johnston’s mural is painted. The company is in the early
conceptual design phase to turn the building into a new student housing
community with ground floor retail. There is no definitive timeline for
redevelopment, but there is a definitive plan for the mural: it will be
preserved in its current state and protected throughout construction. To
ensure this protection, ACC worked with the City of Austin’s Historic
Preservation Office and the Austin Creative Alliance (ACA), a nonprofit
that promotes art in the Austin community.

About American Campus Communities

American Campus Communities, Inc. is the largest owner, manager and
developer of high-quality student housing communities in the United
States. The company is a fully integrated, self-managed and
self-administered equity real estate investment trust (REIT) with
expertise in the design, finance, development, construction management
and operational management of student housing properties. As of March
31, 2019, American Campus Communities owned 171 student housing
properties containing approximately 109,400 beds. Including its owned
and third-party managed properties, ACC’s total managed portfolio
consisted of 205 properties with approximately 133,700 beds. Visit www.americancampus.com.

Facebook: americancampus
Instagram:
@americancampus
Twitter:
@americancampus

About Hi, How Are You Project

The Hi, How Are You (HHAY) Project was created to generate new
conversation around mental well-being. The name and city-proclaimed HHAY
Day were inspired by Austin’s love for the iconic mural painted by
Daniel Johnston. On January 22nd (Johnston’s birthday), people
everywhere are encouraged to check in on a neighbor, friend, co-worker,
family member, or loved one and ask, “Hi, How Are You?” The Project,
created with the support of the Johnston family, funds research grants,
creates media and peer-to-peer training programs that encourage open
dialogue on mental well-being. Johnston is a world-renowned musician and
visual artist despite his own struggles with mental illness. To learn
more about how you can get involved or to donate, please visit www.hihowareyou.org.

Facebook: hihowareyouproject
Twitter:
@hihowareyouproj
Instagram:
@hihowareyouproject

Forward-Looking Statements

In addition to historical information, this press release contains
forward-looking statements under the applicable federal securities law.
These statements are based on management’s current expectations and
assumptions regarding markets in which the Company operates, operational
strategies, anticipated events and trends, the economy, and other future
conditions. Forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future
performance and involve certain risks and uncertainties, which are
difficult to predict. For discussions of some risks and uncertainties
that could cause actual results to differ materially from those
expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements, please refer to
our filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including our
Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2018 under
the heading “Risk Factors” and under the heading “Business –
Forward-looking Statements” and subsequent quarterly reports on Form
10-Q. We undertake no obligation to publicly update any forward-looking
statements, including our expected 2019 operating results, whether as a
result of new information, future events, or otherwise.

Contacts

American Campus Communities, Inc.
Gina Cowart, 512-732-1000
Media
Relations

error: Content is protected !!