Health & Wellness

Survey Reveals College Students’ Mental Health Concerns

A new survey from the National Society of High School Scholars conducted among incoming and matriculating college students revealed that almost half (44.1%) anticipate dealing with mental health issues in the coming semester, either their own or those of people around them. Further, more than half (52.8%) said that preparing for the fall 2021 semester was more stressful than preparing for fall 2020. Less than a quarter (21.7%) said they faced the same level of stress as last year, and just 6.7% said preparing for this year was easier than preparing for the last.

The conducted survey received 290 responses. Results indicate that for the upcoming semester, 17.2% of students anticipate facing mental health issues themselves, 13.1% for people around them (such as roommates, classmates, and professors), and 44.1% are prepared for both. While only 25.5% said they didn’t anticipate encountering any mental health concerns, a wide majority (82.1%) said they know where to go to receive support.

“Although there is still a stigma associated with the topic of mental health for many, our youth have been able to rise above that negative perception and recognize the importance of tackling mental health concerns as openly and directly as we do any health issue,” said James Lewis, NSHSS President. “It’s encouraging that while students are bracing themselves to deal with mental health issues, the vast majority know where to go for mental health support. As the school year gets underway with continued uncertainty and unpredictability, we need to be sure those resources are easy to find, easy to use, and easy to share with other students.”

When asked what they’re looking forward to upon the return to school, anecdotal answers included meeting new people, making new friends, getting a fresh start, and learning new things.

“Students are telling us loud and clear that they want a new beginning with social interaction and new learning opportunities. They are excited about their futures and eager to be engaged in their college experiences,” Lewis said.

About the Author

Matt Jones is senior editor of Spaces4Learning. He can be reached at [email protected].