No one is unaware about the United States economy being in the gutter. The unemployment rate is up and down the scale. And on top of it all, the government has officially shut down.
Regardless of these factors, it seems that college students, for the most part, seem to be surviving relatively well.
“I think it creates a lot of anxiousness,” Jayson Boyers, Managing Director at Vermont’s Champlain College, said about college students. “It raises the stakes for them.”
Boyers said the students he works with are using the conditions of the government as an opportunity. They are looking at starting their own businesses, working with gamming groups, participating in hack-a-thons with businesses, and getting internships much earlier in their college career.
“I think there’s an upside. Students are not taking it as victims,” Boyers said. “I think you’re seeing a line blur between college students and businesses. We’ve got to stop the echo chamber.”
The echo chamber, he explained, is the process of businesses telling colleges and universities what students need to be prepared for when they graduate, the colleges and universities preparing students for these things, businesses changing their standards, and then colleges and universities trying to keep up.
JED Foundation Medical Director, Dr. Victor Schwartz, said that according to last year’s statistics, 15 percent of college students experienced depression, 20 to 25 percent were diagnosed depressed, six to seven percent seriously thought about suicide, 30 to 35 percent were stressed out, and one percent attempted suicide.
While these statistics might seem drastic, Dr. Schwartz said they are actually better than the statistics for people of the same age group who are not enrolled in college with a support system to assist them.
Schools need to do the best they can about providing career opportunities. Those in the college community, Dr. Schwartz went on to suggest, need to identify students who appear to be out of the typical range and who show changes in self-care and behavior. Once these students are identified, they need to be directed to the departments and organizations with the resources to help them.
University of Houston Psychology Professor and Author of newly released book, Your Complete Guide to College Success, Dr. Donald J. Foss, said it still makes sense for students to proceed to college.
“There’s no doubt that students are stressed over money,” Dr. Foss said. “But the average income, the dollars and cents of it all, equals up to over a million bucks over a lifetime.”
To save money, he said, students should not delay their graduation date. Besides the added costs that colleges and universities cost in general, Dr. Foss said, a delayed graduation date will also delay the opportunity of a decent paying job.
In his book, Dr. Foss reveals four key areas college students must work on to be successful. He uses the acronym L.A.S.T., which represent coping with loneliness and isolation, taking action and avoiding alcohol and substance abuse, learning successful studying techniques, and managing time effectively.
For information on group workshops and one-on-one coaching that teaches students to become empowered to pursue their ideal career, visit www.collegiatecareercoach.com or contact Mignon Brooks, Collegiate Career Coach, at (609) 932-0483.