It appears the pandemic really did a number on young people. Are today’s college students prepared for the challenges they’ll face?
COVID Learning Recovery: Many Students Still Lag Behind, But Parents Aren’t Aware
Why are girls harder hit by than boys?
CDC Survey: Teens, especially girls, are experiencing more violence, suicidal thoughts and mental health challenges
What needs to be done to address the mental health pandemic on campuses?
|Isabel, a 20-year-old undergraduate student, is no stranger to hard work. She graduated high school a year early and spent most of 2021 keeping up with three jobs. But when she started college that fall, she felt like she was “sinking.”
She knew that she wasn’t feeling like herself that first semester: Her bubbly personality had dimmed, and she was crying lots more than she was used to.
It all came to a head during a Spanish exam. Isabel, who identifies as both Latina and Black, overheard a video that other students were watching about racism in her communities.
Negative emotions swelled, and she had to walk out without finishing the test. She rushed back to her room, angry and upset, and broke her student card when hitting it on the door to get in.
“And I just started having a full-blown panic attack,” she said. “My mind was racing everywhere.”
Isabel says she begged her parents to let her stay on campus, but they insisted that she make the three-hour drive home, and she soon took a medical withdrawal.
A new survey shows that a significant number of college students struggle with their mental health, and a growing share have considered dropping out themselves.
Two out of 5 undergraduate students – including nearly half of female students – say they frequently experience emotional stress while attending college, according to a survey published Thursday by Gallup and the Lumina Foundation, a private independent organization focused on creating accessible opportunities for post-secondary learning.
The survey was conducted in fall 2022, with responses from 12,000 adults who had a high school degree but had not yet completed an associate’s or bachelor’s degree.
More than 40% of students currently enrolled in an undergraduate degree program had considered dropping out in the past six months, up from 34% in the first year of the Covid-19 pandemic, the survey found. Most cited emotional stress and personal mental health as the reason, far more often than others like financial considerations and difficulty of coursework.