Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Faculty on the Front Lines

The Chronicle of Higher Education
August 31st, 2015

Erratic moods in class. Struggles to complete assignments. Essays that describe thoughts of self-harm or suicide.
Students in the grip of mental distress often show signs of it in their academic work and classroom behavior. Faculty members, especially those who interact frequently with them, are well placed to pick up on warning signs. But professors often need help figuring out how to respond.
"What they tell us is, ‘Students come to us and tell us things, but we’re not quite sure what to do next,’ " says David R. Reetz, director of counseling services at Aurora University, near Chicago.
Almost all colleges now have some kind of rapid-response team that will intervene when there’s an immediate emergency — a campus shooter, a bridge jumper. Beyond that, many colleges offer training to equip faculty and staff members to identify and handle students’ mental illness.

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