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Tribute Tuesdays

Tribute Tuesdays


On October 31, 2017, a student majoring in political science, Alejandro Cifuentes, took his own life.  Alex (as he was known to students and faculty in the department) was well known by students across the university—but most especially to friends and colleagues in his program.  A good and seemingly cheerful person, Alex was always supportive of his friends both academically and personally.  Unfortunately, and unknown to those that knew him, Alex was battling demons.  Specifically he suffered from severe depression which he bore on his own for as long as he could.  His death had a profound affect upon the department and our students.  More importantly, it highlighted the importance of mental health services and the need to reach out to help those who need it and for those who need it to reach out for help. 

According to the U.S. Center for Disease Control, suicide is among the top ten causes of death in the United States—the second leading cause of death among people ages 10 to 34. And research has shown that among those who attempt suicide “the most common underlying disorder is depression.”  With this in mind, the students, faculty, and staff want students to know that help is available. 

If you know someone afflicted with depression, or you are concerned about someone you know, or you feel as if you cannot bear to go on, the following resources are here to help: 

Texas A&M University-Commerce Counseling Center

Lakes Regional Community Services Crisis Center

National Alliance on Mental Illness Hunt County

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 

To honor Alex and draw attention to the struggle against mental illness and suicide, the Department of Political Science, Pi Sigma Alpha, and many students in the department invite you to participate in Tribute Tuesdays. 

Tribute Tuesday was born in the immediate aftermath of Alex’s death.  Political Science students John Frick, Brian Stephens, and Robert Tipps wanted a way to commemorate Alex and his life, in addition to recalling the impact he had had upon their lives.  They came together and created “Fly Fridays” on which they would up their fashion game because Alex would always compliment people when they dressed nicely with “You look fly!” 

In order to give more students the opportunity to take part, Fly Friday is becoming Tribute Tuesday since more political science seem to be on campus on Tuesdays and Thursdays.  Any student or faculty member is invited to take part—and students in political science are encouraged to do so--in remembrance of Alex and those who suffer from depression and to also remind us to look out for one another.  We can’t control the complexity of the world around us, but we can be mindful and kind to one another.