According to recent data released by Higher Education Statistics Agency (Hesa) form 2014-15, there has been a 210% increase since 2009-10 of dropout rates from students suffering from mental health problems.
The data showed a record 1,180 students experiencing mental health problems have left University before completing their degrees. In comparison, the data found only 380 in the academic year of 2009-10.
The Guardian, reported that Norman Lamb, a former health minister said there was;
“A crisis on campus with respect to students’ mental health. Counselling provision should be a priority so that all students can access effective support for problems like anxiety, but we know that these services are too often underfunded.”
These statistics have generated much concern throughout University counsellors, mental health charities and health experts; who all have pushed for higher education institutions to ensure their current support services are of optimal quality for their students.
Many factors have been attributed as potential contributors to these statistics. One suggestion is that, the rise in students with mental health problems dropping out is due to the pressure to succeed academically, especially with the presence of social media putting their lives under a microscope. Head of counselling services have accredited the increase partly down to more students already having pre-existing mental health problems and partly down to the taboo of mental health decreasing as society becomes more willing to discuss it.
The Guardian’s own research came to show that despite the trebling of students with health problems dropping out, universities in fact are cutting back on their employment of counsellors.