• Grace Gidley

Students Need to Spend Time with Friends and Family!

Social interaction in early adulthood is an important aspect of human development, but almost 40% of students spend then less than 5 hours a week socializing.

In NAMI's 2012 survey, 1987, only 18% of college students spent 5 hours or less socializing and 40% spent 16 hours or more. By 2014, the students spending 5 hours or less socializing doubled and the students that spent 16 hours or more socializing dropped to 18% (NAMI 2012). Sixteen hours a week sounds like a lot, but that is only a little over 2 hours a day. If the student is spending 4 hours socializing on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, that means the student is socializing less than an hour a day Monday through Friday. It also could be that a student spends all day Saturday and Sunday socializing and then doesn't socialize at all over the course of the school week.

While attending college, 73% of students report of having a mental health crisis and 35% said that their college did not know about the crisis.

Social isolation has a negative impact on mental wellness. It has been linked to an increased risk of depression, anxiety, and suicide. With the decrease in social interaction, it explains why there is such a high rate of anxiety, depression, or a mental health crisis. NAMI reports that 73% of college students have a mental health crisis and 35% of those students said that their colleges did not know about it.

65% of college drop outs are because of mental health reasons.

A student's mental health directly impacts his or her ability to succeed in school. Half of all students felt overwhelming anxiety that caused them to struggle with classes and 80% felt stressed on a daily basis (NAMI 2012). With those percentages, it isn't surprising that students may drop out of college due to mental health related conditions. Over half of college drop outs are because of mental health reasons (NAMI 2012).

Students can improve their mental health and increase their success in college by socializing with family and friends.

Students need those 16 hours a week of socialization to be successful during college. Since, some students struggle to form and maintain a social network during college, MHAPC has started a social club specifically for college students in order to combat the social isolation felt and to decrease students risk for mental illness. This is an extension of our Open Door Social Club and Live Your Life Well programs.

College Student Social (CSS) is scheduled to meet the last Tuesday of every month from 4pm to 6pm. We hope to increase the amount of club meetings to once a week and we encourage club members to connect throughout the week. We will also keeping contact with club members throughout the month.

For more information, call Grace at (219)462-6267, email her at ggidley@mentalhealthpc.org or message us on Facebook www.facebook.com/mhapc


Gruttadaro, D., & Crudo, D. (2012). College Students Speak: A Survey Report on Mental Health [PDF]. Arlington: NAMI the National Alliance on Mental Illness.

Harter, J., & Arora, R. (2008, June 05). Social Time Crucial to Daily Emotional Well-Being in U.S. Retrieved from https://news.gallup.com/poll/107692/social-time-crucial-daily-emotional-wellbeing.aspx

Lyons, C. L. (2018). Loneliness and social isolation. CQ researcher, 28, 657-680. Retrieved from http://library.cqpress.com/

#socialConnections #happiness #collegesuccess #collegestudentsocial

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