College students experience a lot of stress. As parents, some of us are acutely aware of our student’s stress levels, and to others of us it may be less obvious. Of course, not every student experiences stress, and some students actually thrive on a certain amount of it; but many college students find that increased pressure or anxiety are part of the experience of college.
Consider some of the following information gathered about student stress as you think about your own student’s potential stress levels. Discuss some of these findings with your student to help him realize that he, and/or his friends, may not be alone if they are experiencing anxiety.
College students experience a lot of stress – but it’s not all bad
The Associated Press and MTV conducted a survey of college students in 2009 to consider college student stress. They surveyed over 2,200 students at 40 randomly chosen colleges throughout the United States. Although the survey is several years old, the results have not changed much, or may be even more concerning in recent years. Some of the findings of this College Stress and Mental Health poll are included below.
- 85% of students feel stressed on a daily basis
- 60% of students at some time have felt stress to the point of not being able to get work done
- 70% of students have never considered talking to a counselor about their stress
- 84% of students reach out to friends to help them with their stress
- 67% of students reach out to parents for help with stress
The good news is that in spite of these statistics regarding stress levels, 74% of students reported feeling very or somewhat happy. Clearly, not all stress is bad.