College students battle with stress

By Abigail Keefe
April 17, 2008

Eighty percent of college students feel stress in their daily lives, according to a recent survey.

Of those 80 percent of students feeling stress, the results from the poll showed that 63 percent could not get their schoolwork done, 55 percent did not feel up to hanging out with their friends and one-third of those students felt as though they were failures or let people down.

The poll was conducted by mtvU and The Associated Press.

The Cabrini College director of Counseling Services, Dr. Sara Maggitti, said, “There are many sources of stress for college students.

Some of the most common sources of stress are academics, financial strain, and interpersonal relationships among many others.”

As the survey continued to unravel results, mtvU and AP found that 74 percent of students surveyed believed that their work load and grades in college were the source of most of their stress the past three months.

The survey also reported that 62 percent of students admitted that finances were a factor in their stress and about 50 percent said their stress involves personal relationships and family relationships.

Having stress is only a minor problem compared to some of the consequences of anxiety. Tamika Young of MTV’s communications department reported in the MTV press release, “16 percent [of those surveyed] have a friend who has talked about ending their life in the past year and nine percent have contemplated suicide themselves.”

The press release said, “Among those with a diagnosed mental health condition, the numbers rise dramatically, with 23 percent reporting they have seriously considered suicide [vs. six percent undiagnosed].”

Maggitti said, “I believe that if a student lacks stress management skills or their typical coping strategies are no longer working, they should seek out help from a close friend, family member, adviser or a professional counselor.”

Maggitti said that on average she has 32 students a week coming into Counseling Services.

Young said, “Of the 9 percent who said they have considered suicide in the past year, half said they have considered talking to a counselor or professional, but only a quarter have actually received such help.”

Due to the common anxiety and stress among college students, Maggitti said “Some common ways of mastering stress include altering lifestyle habits. For example, decreasing caffeine use, exercising regularly, getting adequate sleep and eating a healthy diet [may help].”

By improving their everyday life, a student will become less stressed due to simply being “on top of things.” Maggitti said, “There are also ways that students can change the stressful situation by improving their time and money management, becoming more assertive, learning more effective problem solving skills and possibly ending a job or relationship.”

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Abigail Keefe

Abigail Keefe is a Cabrini College student studying communications, enjoying her time in Radnor, Pennsylvania. Abbie loves working for the school newspaper, the Loquitur, and is also passionate about everything that the communication field has to offer.

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