Fort Jackson Opens Mental Fitness School - DatelineCarolina

Fort Jackson Opens Mental Fitness School

Fort Jackson officials held a ribbon cutting ceremony for the base's Victory University Monday. Fort Jackson officials held a ribbon cutting ceremony for the base's Victory University Monday.
The first batch of soldiers are already attending classes. The first batch of soldiers are already attending classes.

By Jana Coleman

Posted April 5, 2010 10:12AM

The U.S. Army held a ribbon cutting ceremony Monday at Fort Jackson in Columbia for a new school called "Victory University".

Officials say the school is designed to create mentally fit troops who can help soldiers handle stress during training and deployment.  The Army hopes the training will help soldiers deal with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and reduce the number of suicides among soldiers returning from combat.

Psychologist Martin Seligman has been working on preventing post traumatic stress syndrome for the last forty years.

"The drill sergeants will teach their soldiers the skills of dealing with depression, anxiety, and PTSD.  So what we've been able to do is take their optimistic skills and teach them to everyone," Seligman says.

Sergeant Jose Sixtos is a trainer for the school and says he learned how to deal with his problems the hard way.

"We have to go through our bumps and bruises in life to figure out that maybe there is a better way of dealing with things," he says.

The Army will train about 750 soldiers this year in the program. 

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