Understanding Campus Culture and Student Coping Strategies for Mental Health Issues in Five Canadian Colleges and Universities

This study aimed to better understand campus mental health culture and student mental health coping strategies, and to identify the mental health needs of students as well as gaps in mental health services within postsecondary education in Canada. 41 interviews were conducted with campus stakeholders at five Canadian universities. Five themes involving mental health emerged from the campus interviews and are expanded upon in the article: the stigma of mental illness; campus culture related to mental health; mental health services available and barriers to mental health services on campus; accommodations for students’ mental health needs; and student mental health coping strategies. The authors conclude that although Canadian campuses are raising awareness about mental health issues, there is not enough mental health infrastructure support on campuses; and in particular, accessibility to campus mental health resources needs improvement.

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