What’s Happens to Student Mental Health Over the Summer?

It’s May…it’s crunch time. Finals are just around the corner and students can almost taste the freedom of summer. Administrators hold their breath in hopes that students can navigate the papers, tests, and pressures without too much damage on the way to summer until campus breathes a sigh of relief.

But, is summer really all that it’s cracked up to be? Is summer that great release from pressure and stress that people think it is? Our data suggestions that for some students…it’s not.

How do we know? We are actively tracking the mental health of around 2,000 users, most of them college students.

Marbles is an iOS and android app that helps people develop self-awareness by tracking 7 important components of mental and emotional health. Users also can access a healthy support community of peers to discuss mental health 100% troll and stigma free. Here’s how we do it.

We ask users to share some demographic information like their current employer, school or university, gender, age, race, and sexual orientation so we can keep Marbles 100% anonymous.

We then aggregate this data and provide 24/7 access to a visual model of your campuses mental health trends through our Analytics portal.

Reflection data is real-time mental and emotional health data that our users are reporting on a scale of 0–100. The higher the number, the better the user’s mental and emotional health.

In the following example, we examine Reflection data from a public university and a private college located 10 miles a part in the Midwest.

Figure 1 below displays the real-time mental health trends of the large public university which may be what you expected, reflection scores increase over summer (i.e. students report feeling better).

Figure 1: Public University’s real-time well-being trends

However, let’s examine Figure 2, which displays the students’ Reflection scores at the private college.

As you can see, if you go to this private school, summer may not be so hot (the blue box represents summer)!

Figure 2: Private University’s real-time well-being trends

Suddenly, summer doesn’t seem like a great, stress-free time for students to relax!

In fact, for this private college, summer demonstrates some of the lowest Reflection scores reported all year, right on par with the beginning of December when the fall semester stress peaks.

Why are students from this private school noticing 30 to 50% lower Reflection scores than their public school counterparts over the summer?
I have a few hypotheses…but let’s not go there.

The important thing is that this could be a huge opportunity for this private college to improve their student’s lives, experience, and performance when their student’s are most vulnerable.

Now it may not be that college’s responsibility to make sure their students are alright over the summer…but what if this is when students are considering dropping out, changing schools, or worse, thinking about suicide or harm?

What if this private college could do something to meet these students’ needs over the summer?

Would that be the difference maker between a more engaged and healthy student body? Maybe…but maybe not!

It’s oftentimes what we don’t know that hurts us the most. Marbles apps and Analytics can prepare your institution to better address and manage your students mental and emotional health. Take the guesswork out of mental health policy, outreach, and engagement with Marbles Analytics.

Do you want to be considered for a Fall 2017 pilot or bring this to your institution?

We’ve only got 3 spots left in the Marbles Academy (what’s the Marbles Academy) for the upcoming semester. Simply email Adam@reptech.io today to be considered or let’s begin a discussion about how Marbles can be brought to your campus or organization!

We will not be considering new applicants for Fall 2017 after June 30th, 2017. If you are interested in launching later than Fall 2017, we’d still like to get to know you!

Thank you,

-Adam

p.s. Adam’s TEDxtalk: Choices, Suicide, and Apple Cores

p.s.s. We are in the process of running a University-sponsored academic study about the effectiveness of Marblesapp on reducing student depression and anxiety. To get involved or hear preliminary results, contact Adam!

download marbles for free from www.livebeyondthelabel.com
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