The Importance of Continuing Mental Healthcare for College Students Over the Summer

July 06, 2023

The Importance of Continuing Mental Healthcare for College Students Over the Summer

Kaitlin Gallo, Ph.D.
Chief Clinical Officer

For some college students, going home for the summer means spending time with family, reuniting with high school friends, beach trips, summer jobs, and internships. But for others, returning to the family home for school breaks induces anxiety and stress. Even for students who thought summer would be restful, unexpected stressors may develop over the summer. In addition to students with a newly developed need for mental health services, some students engaged in mental health services throughout the academic year may need to continue with their treatment even though school is not in session. For these reasons, it is crucial that college students have continued access to care throughout the summer months.  

One category of stress that affects many students is financial stress, which can be exacerbated during school breaks. Students experiencing financial challenges may have to shoulder more responsibilities during school recess, which could wear on their mental wellbeing. Throughout the school year, housing and boarding costs may be less of a concern for students because of the resources available on campus. But after finishing up the semester, they now must carry the burden of finding ways to meet their basic needs within the constraints of their individual financial situations. In fact, one in three college students faces food insecurity nationally, which can negatively affect students’ academic performance and lead to mental health issues.  

According to the Mary Christie Institute (MCI), of which Christie Campus Health is the founding sponsor, low-income students often prioritize their college expenses and fees, leaving little funds for much else. Additionally, students who are the first in their family to attend secondary education may not be aware of financial aid or scholarship opportunities, making it more challenging to meet student costs.  

Christie Navigators help students who need resources to meet food, housing, and other basic needs. Navigators support students and counseling staff by researching and identifying providers, treatment, and other resources that promote student success. They also help with community referrals and appointments, including access to housing, food, or other social support services.  

According to the most recent independent survey of college students utilizing Christie Campus Health services, 84% of students said that Christie’s mental health services helped them remain in school. No student starts a college education without the intention of completing it, and we are proud to support student success alongside student mental health. Christie Campus Health recognizes that students’ mental health challenges do not end when their last final is completed for the semester. Christie’s services are available to students all year, whether they are on or off campus. Click here for more information about Christie Campus Health and our suite of mental health offerings for colleges and universities. 

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