Today’s Education in the Media blog looks at University Mental Health Day.
University Mental Health
Today, Thursday 7 March, it is University Mental Health Day. To mark this, we are announcing the creation of a new taskforce to support students with their mental health when they make the transition from further education to higher education. This has received coverage from the Telegraph, the Times, Cosmopolitan, Sky News and the Yorkshire Post.
The announcement follows work by the department to identify four key areas of risk that can affect student mental health – independent living, independent learning, healthy relationships and wellbeing.
The new taskforce will go by the name of the Education Transitions Network and will include leading sector groups including UCAS, the National Union of Students, Universities UK, Student Minds, the Association of Colleges and the Office for Students. Their priority as a collective will be to develop measures that help people students make a smooth transition into higher education and maintain strong mental health and wellbeing.
Education Secretary Damian Hinds said:
Going to university should be a positive, life-changing experience. Understandably for many young people, the idea of leaving home and starting to live independently can be exciting but also daunting.
Juggling challenges like independent studying or managing finances can be hard enough, but with the added element being in a new place, surrounded by new people it can for some be overwhelming. We need to make sure students have the support they need to thrive at university and help these really be the best days of their life.
I’m delighted to have the expertise of the sector backing this vision and joining this taskforce. Our universities are world-leading in so many areas and I want them to be the best for mental health support too. Pinpointing these key areas which can affect student mental health is essential to the progress we must make to ensure every student can flourish in higher education.