Summary and Notes – EGS meeting (Feb 26th)

We’re increasing our numbers! For our third Education Graduate Student meet-up, we had four in-person attendees and two Skyping in. We’d love to have more of you join us tomorrow, Thursday March 12 from 6-7pm.

This week’s topic of discussion was facilitated by Melissa Kenney and focused on the barriers faced by students with a mental health disorder. We further discussed how they are alike and how they differ from students with a learning disability who seek accessibility services at the post-secondary level. Issues that were discussed surrounding this group of learners included the emergence of mental health disorder while at college and challenges experienced by students who are adjusting to both the newness of postsecondary education and their mental health disorder.

In addition to debating the merits of the article, and examining the methodology, several questions were raised:

  • Considering the localization of the research performed (the article was limited to Fanshawe College participants), how applicable is the research to students at other postsecondary institutions? Would factors such as the variance of accessibility and counselling support have an impact on the numbers?
  • What about students a with mental health disorder who are yet undiagnosed?
  • Are anxiety levels on the rise? If so, what are some of the contributing factors?

Our conversation moved into discussing stigma surrounding mental health, including several opinions on the effectiveness of campaigns such as the Bell Let’s Talk Day. As wellbeing has been a major theme in recent academic literature, including on this blog, all of the attendees expressed a concern for how to provide ongoing help for students and colleagues when faced with institutionalized stigma.

The focus for next week’s conversation will be in the field of Aboriginal education, facilitated by Robin Potts. We hope to see you Thursday, March 12, from 6-7pm (EST). We will be offering Skype again, and hope to increase our numbers. Join us!

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