“Oglethorpe president: COVID affected mental health of 78% of our students” – The Atlanta Journal Constitution

By Maureen Downey, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
July 14, 2022

Nick Ladany is the president of Oglethorpe University in Atlanta and a counseling psychologist. In this guest column, Ladany says student mental health needs demand action and attention at the K-12 and college level.

By Nick Ladany

We’re facing a mental health crisis, and it’s going to get worse before it gets better.

The U.S. surgeon general in December issued an advisory on the mental health emergency among children, adolescents and young adults that was exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. A 2022 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report discloses nearly 1 in 5 high school students has seriously considered suicide.

The problem is amplified on college campuses, where a 2020 CDC report revealed about 1 in 4 adults between the ages of 18 and 24 had seriously considered suicide. The demands for more mental health resources were already climbing on the campuses of our higher education institutions before the global shutdown, and now students are reporting heightened stress, anxiety and depression as a result of rising isolation, grief and economic uncertainty. …

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