College in the Era of Coronavirus: Don’t Forget Mental Health

College in the Era of Coronavirus: Don’t Forget Mental Health

As thousands of students and families ready for back to school, there is a lot more on the checklist than registering for classes and picking out sheets for dorms. Navigating the options for classes – online or hybrid – is just part of the challenge.

According to a recent article in the Boston Globe, “Eighty percent of students reported that COVID-19 has negatively impacted their mental health, and one in five said their mental health significantly worsened, according to active Survey Minds, a national organization devoted to student mental health.

The article goes on to point out problems that start at home often get packed up along with favorite stuffed animals and family photos. The national conversation on racial inequality since the spring has increased anxiety for many students.

But who is there to help unpack the mental health issues once the parents and caregivers have completed the drop off on campus and returned home?

“My biggest fear from a mental health perspective is that inequality is going to widen, that we’re going to see fewer and fewer students of color who are able to access mental health services through their campuses,” said Sarah Lipson, a professor at the Boston University School of Public Health who studies college student mental health.

As a parent of two college graduates and a freshman enrolling this fall, I have experience with these issues first hand. In 2017, my son Avery had a major depressive episode, just weeks after graduating from college. He lost his life to suicide.

As I write in my book, “This is Depression”, mental health and depression disorders don’t discriminate. It can happen at any time.

As a way to help other parents and families, I decided to share what I have learned by hosting a virtual webinar Thursday, August 6 at 5 pm PST to warn about the dangers of depression and where to go for resources.

Anyone interested is welcome to participate and ask questions. It’s FREE and reservations and details are available by emailing info@averyburtonfoundation.org.

Yours in good health,

Reggie Burton is an author, speaker, entrepreneur and Founder/President of the Avery Burton Foundation, a non-profit 501c.3 organization focused on mental and depression outreach. He is also the author of “This is Depression” available on Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

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