West Point launches new program to prevent suicides

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In light of recent events, the West Point military academy will hold a special suicide prevention training next month.

West Point officials say in the span of two months, two cadets killed themselves and two more attempted suicide.

"It?s very unfortunate, but it is not uncommon to hear of one or two during the winter months each year,? says West Point librarian Steve Davenport.

Davenport adds that the cadets face great pressures, including an intense academic program and daily physical exercises.

?It's a much more intense college experience than what most American college students, I think, go through," he says.

West Point officials say they are taking the situation very seriously. In recent months, all cadets received a formal suicide briefing and were given prevention cards. Officials have also been reviewing the academy's admissions process to make sure candidates are prepared for the rigors of West Point and Army life.

The suicide problem goes beyond West Point academy. On Thursday, defense officials announced that the suicide rate among Army soldiers is at a 27-year record high. At least 128 Army soldiers killed themselves last year, compared to 115 in 2007.

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