UCLA, Azusa Pacific University and the California Institute of Technology are just three of the 55 colleges that have signed up for The Jed & Clinton Health Matters Campus Program, which will examine how these schools handle student mental health on campus (via The Huffington Post).
The program "is designed to help colleges and universities promote emotional wellbeing and mental health programming, reduce substance abuse and prevent suicide among their students," reads its website.
"We're not saying these schools have the best programs in place today, but these are schools that are making the commitment to enter the process of continued improvement," executive director and CEO of The Jed Foundation John MacPhee told The Huffington Post.
In the past year more than half of college students experienced "overwhelming anxiety," about 32 percent reported feeling "so depressed that it was difficult to function," and eight percent reported seriously considering suicide. Furthermore, half of all full-time college students binge drink and abuse prescription drugs and/or illegal drugs, and almost 1 in 4 of the nation’s college students meets the medical criteria for substance abuse, explains the program.
To combat mental health issues among students, the colleges that have decided to participate in the program will take a "confidential self-assessment survey" of their current mental health and substance abuse programs, and the Campus Program Team will work with the colleges to enhance these programs.