Statistics concerning the mental health of students at Keele University have been released – with the results going to show the scale of mental health problems facing students. In recent years, the budget for dealing with mental health problems has risen hugely at the University, as have staff numbers. Demand for counselling services has risen exponentially in recent years, as will be discussed further. Read on for more, including some interesting statistics regarding Keele University.
In the 2013-14 academic year, 633 students sought help for counselling and mental health conditions. By the 2015-16 academic year, this has risen to 803 students. The most recent statistics are from the 2016-17 academic year – where the number had risen to 876 – with the number predicted to continue to rise. To match this rise, the number of staff with a mental health remit at the University has risen from 4 to 7 between the 2013-14 academic year and the 2017-2018 academic year.
The budget for counselling was £158,000 in the 2012-13 academic year. In the four following years, it rose hugely. By the 2014-15 year it hit £249,000, and the 2016-17 year witnessed a budget of £342,000! It is likely that the 2017-18 academic year will also continue this upward trend. As for waiting times, a first appointment is usually provided within four days. However, the average waiting time for subsequent appointments is then thirty-two days. Hopefully this will reduce in forthcoming years.
It is fair to assert from these statistics that the University has witnessed a considerable surge in the number of students that request help with mental health problems in the last few years. Yet this isn’t something purely limited to Keele – with other Universities reporting similar statistics. These are difficult times to be a student – with uncertainty over the future, higher tuition fees than ever before and with the job market being at an unprecedented level of competitiveness. There is a pressure like never before on students to succeed – which can lead to these mental health problems developing or aggravating.
These revelations can however be seen in a positive light – such as that it appears the stigma around mental health is disappearing – leading to more people to request help. The only concern is that many students suffer in silence. Not every student suffering from ill health uses counselling services – which should be remembered when considering these statistics. Those in need are encouraged to actively seek help, there is certainly help out there for those who need help.
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These are certainly tough times to be a student. However it is encouraging to see that more people are coming forward with their mental health concerns – and that the stigma finally appears to be going away. While Universities all around the United Kingdom need to improve their current provisions for mental health, it appears that some positive steps have been taken in recent months in the battle against mental health problems. Hopefully this trend will continue. Remember you can contact the Samaritans on 116 123 – should you ever need.