Modern college students take on too much, experience more stress

April 11, 2017

Moriah Butler

mbutler3@uccs.edu

     Millennial students have been criticized, being called snowfl akes, lazy and freeloaders as more and more are choosing to live at home to save money.

     But amongst all the negativity, millennial students have proven to be more educated than the generations before them.

     More people in this generation today are working toward earning a college degree than their generational predecessors.

     Since attending UCCS, I have had a personal experience with just how overwhelming college can be.

     Parents and faculty tend to downplay how much work goes into attending a modern university, maybe remembering college as a time when they had few worries or responsibilities.

     But college students today report feeling 14 times more stressed out than students in 1985, according to the Higher Education Research Institute. Over 260,000 students at 462 colleges contributed to the survey.

     I constantly fi nd myself defending how much work it takes to be a full-time student, especially as a freshman.

     College freshmen experience an uprooting of their lives, going from seeing the same faces for four years and living at home to fending for themselves as an independent adult.

     Not only does a university present tougher academics than high school, when moving out of their homes, college freshmen typically feel the loss of a very important support system from their parents and teachers.

     That being said, having a social life in college is imperative to be a successful student. When freshmen lose the support system they are accustomed to, it is important to fi nd a new one within the people on campus.

     Stress can vary from academic, environmental and mental issues. A lack of sleep or nutrition along with the competition for grades and need to perform are all stressors that affect college students.

     While we all face stressful situations in our lives, the problem comes when you experience too much.

     An average college student spends over eight hours a day in classes, lectures and completing piles of homework. Juggling school, work and a social life is nearly laughable.

     Excessive stress can cause headaches, stomach pains, anxiety, panic attacks, depression – the list goes on.

     But the mental exhaustion that comes along with being in college can be the most straining on a student. Due partially to stress, a surprisingly high number of college freshmen don’t go on to finish their degrees.

     We see high levels of anxiety and depression in college students, especially in freshmen.

     Surveyed by the Association for University and College Counseling Center Directors, 95 percent of college counseling directors said the number of students with signifi cant psychological problems is a growing concern on campus.

     Many high school seniors don’t realize just how time-consuming higher level education can actually be; college presents a whole new playing field.

     The academic workload alone presented to a fulltime student is enough to negatively affect anyone.

     With this new workload, it takes a lot of time management skills to balance both.

     Not all students come from the same background or face the same problems, and there is no denying that this transition is hard. When it gets rough, just remember that the outcome is totally worth it, and your peers are going through it all with you.