Students in UK universities have been neglected in the past few years. The rising number of suicides in these institutions is a clear indication that the problem is deep and needs to be addressed immediately.
UK Universities are struggling with how to handle mental illness issues. This has not always been the case; cases of mental health were not as common as today. Structural and financial changes have been implemented in the education system that has resulted in the current problems.
Cases of mental issues in UK universities
Take Terry Vass experience as an example. He has been the head of University in this school for the past 19 years. He explains that during the start of his carrier, almost all security issues involved students’ brawls and rowdy activities. This has changed significantly. He explains that most of the cases he has to deal with issues that involve mental health issues.
The most disheartening of this case is the students experiencing suicidal thoughts. It is tough for any person to wrap his head about anyone’s urge to die. When it involves young people who he is very passionate to serve, it breaks his heart.
Depression, anxiety and mental breakdowns are being experienced countrywide. Teenagers and young adults are at the forefront of those hugely affected. In 2015 intake, over 26,000 students dropped within their first year. This number is very alarming but not surprising for people who have been following the toll mental illness is having on students.
New data also shows that students are committing suicides at a very higher rate. The rate, which stands at 4.7 per 100,000, means that approximately 95 students die by suicide per year. This is unacceptable for any country.
Better psychological care for students of UK universities
Bristol university recorded some of the highest suicide rates in the country in the year 2016. The report released determined that in 18 months, at least 12 students had died by suicide. The university expressed its disappoint in its inability to prevent the cases.
These cases were also unique and with the ever-increasing demand in better psychological care, there is growing fear that not all cases will be addressed.
The University of the West of England, Bristol released its suicide cases from 2010 to 2018 in a report published by the BBC. In its analysis, it determined that there were 14 suicides during that period. Most of these suicides occurred between January and April. This is estimated to be the highest stressful period on the campus where students are taking and preparing for exams.
With an estimated growth of the number of students expected to be enrolling in Universities, this problem has to be addressed. The education system should be approached, not as a profit-making entity but as a growth and development institution that is aimed at developing the physical and mental faculty of its students. With this approach, proper care will be provided to students who need it most and prevent future suicides and mental breakdowns.