New Brief Gives Guidance on Top Student Mental Health Issues for Higher Ed Leaders
October 30, 2023

ACE has published a new brief to help guide higher education leaders on how to best support the higher education community and beyond as student mental health concerns on campuses continue to rise.

The brief, Six Considerations for Student Mental Health in Higher Education for the 2023-24 Academic Year, offers specific areas that deserve more attention and consideration by institutions. The authors are Hollie M. Chessman, director of research and practice, ACE Education Futures Lab, Armando Montero, and Tabatha Cruz, former Education Futures Lab associates.

“The challenges surrounding the mental health of college and university students continue to be prevalent for institutional leaders,” the authors wrote. These concerns have risen quickly in the past decade—the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that suicide is currently the second leading cause of death among college-aged students, and concerns have only worsened during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Below are the six areas of focus for higher education leaders’ consideration. Read the brief for more details and insight: 

  1. Realize the impact of counseling center staffing and address turnover.
  2. Cultivate degree pathways for aspiring mental health professionals, especially for students of color and LGBTQ+ students.
  3. Build upon positive movement at the federal and state levels that supports student mental health.
  4. Implement evidence-based practices on campus, and document and assess their impact.
  5. Focus on public health- and trauma-informed approaches to address the mental health crisis.
  6. Anticipate that incoming traditional-aged students and their parents will ask about and expect there to be mental health support on campus.

See ACE’s page on Campus Mental Health and Well-Being to get find resources and read more briefs, including What Works for Improving Mental Health in Higher Education, Critical Considerations Before Contracting With a Teletherapy Vendor, and Let’s Talk: Senior Leadership, Student Mental Health, and Counseling Centers.