By Stephanie Stahl
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Nearly one in six college students has been diagnosed with or treated for anxiety within the past year.
Drexel University wants students to be pro-active about their mental health and has found a way to gauge the mood of the student body which this week is taking on the added pressure of finals.
Health Reporter Stephanie Stahl joins us with a first of its kind innovative student service.
Going to college can be one of the most stressful times of a young person’s life.
“I’ve never been as stressed out in my whole life,” said Drexel University student Alexandra Kirczow. “I had my first anxiety attack.”
In addition to the weight of trying to ace classes, many students can also confront a variety of social, emotional and mental health issues.
“Nobody ever talks about it, it’s like this elephant in the room,” said Drexel sophomore Anna Gibbons.
Drexel University wants to change that attitude with their program called Get A Check-up From The Neck-up.
It’s a mental health survey taken on Drexel’s Mindkare Mental Health Screening kiosk inside the Drexel University Recreation Center.
“The MindKare kiosk is a tool to prompt students to take stock of their own mental health,” explained Dr. Paul Furtaw, Drexel’s Associate Director For Counseling. “Today’s student is dealing with a whole amalgam of stressors.”
The kiosk offers six surveys on a touch screen addressing issues from depression, bipolar disorder, alcohol and eating disorders to general anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder.
It’s anonymous and takes about two minutes.
The screen is polarized so that no one standing nearby can see a student’s answers.
Students receive instant feedback.
They’ll know if their responses are indicative of someone who would benefit from more formal mental services.
If a problem is detected, the student will see a menu of mental health services available on Drexel’s campus.
The university is the first in the country to use the mental health screening kiosk.