More OSU students seeking counseling

COLUMBUS (AP) — Tougher academic standards are creating a side effect at Ohio State University — more students seeking psychiatric counseling.

In the year that ended June 30, a record 2,722 students sought help from the university’s Counseling and Consultation Service — a 17 percent increase over the previous year.

The numbers started going up three years ago and have increased as the university has implemented tougher admission and academic standards, said Louise Douce, the service’s director.

“Anxiety is what has risen the fastest among OSU students and, as we have become more academically able, anxiety has gone up,” she said.

Depression is the most mentioned reason among students seeking counseling, followed by anxiety, relationship concerns, academic performance and family concerns.

Not just OSU

Ohio State’s increase is in line with national studies that show growing numbers of college students seeking counseling. A survey taken last fall by the American College Health Association found that 12.7 percent of college students experienced an anxiety disorder in the previous 12 months, up from 8.7 percent six years earlier.

The survey found that 15.2 percent of students said depression, seasonal affective disorder or anxiety had affected their academic performance, up from 11.2 percent in 2000.

Evans Desir, who transferred from junior college to Ohio State hoping to play football, said he was advised to seek counseling.

“You think you are going to come and play in the Michigan game, but it all didn’t work out like that,” said Desir, a junior.

A counselor helped him look to the future instead of the past, he said.

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