Student Mental Health

 

Preparing students to flourish in the world that awaits them requires a commitment to every aspect of their development.

Today, addressing their mental health is more critical than ever as they juggle their studies with the stresses of the COVID-19 pandemic, an economic downturn and a renewed nationwide push for social justice.

To help students achieve their dreams, we launched an ongoing series of system-wide events focused on promoting their mental and emotional wellbeing. I hope you will join us and add your insights and expertise to this important conversation, which will build on our long legacy of world-class service to both students and the public good.


 

Student Mental Health Symposia

The University of Illinois System hosts an annual symposium devoted to issues around student mental health. Initially planned as a day-long, interactive event, the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic resulted in the 2020 and 2021 symposia being held virtually. Nearly a thousand faculty, staff, and students from the three universities and system offices participated in the two events.  The event was hosted by President Killeen and the three chancellors and was keynoted by nationally recognized leaders in the student mental health arena. The symposia recognize the importance of student mental health, provide a forum to explore fresh ideas, strengthen system-wide relationships, and generate innovative strategies to address the growing need for effective and available mental health services to promote student success. The events to date are just the start of an ongoing effort to address student mental health while emphasizing the role all members of the campus community can play in supporting a caring and nurturing environment that allows students to thrive and reach their full potential.

2021

The second Student Mental Health Symposium was held on September 15, 2021. The keynote speaker was Dr. Kelly Crace, Associate Vice President for Health & Wellness and Director of the Center for Mindfulness and Authentic Excellence at the College of William & Mary. Dr. Crace has published and presented in the areas of values, flourishing, resilience, life role development and transition, and organizational development. His keynote, “Flourishing through Chronic Too-Muchness,” is available below. Over 500 faculty, staff, and students from the three universities and system offices participated. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dr. Crace PowerPoint Presentation

2020

The inaugural Student Mental Health Symposium was held on September 16, 2020. The keynote address was delivered by Dr. Gary Glass, Director of Counseling and Career Services at Oxford College of Emory University, a nationally renowned proponent of addressing student mental health issues from a community perspective. Dr. Glass' presentation is available below. Over 400 faculty, staff, and students from the three universities and system offices participated. 

The Student Mental Health Symposium Committee

The Student Mental Health Symposium Committee will continue its charge to provide information and supportive resources to the broad universities' communities.  It embraces the understanding that active participation by faculty, staff, and students in a community of caring is beneficial to all campus members.

Student Community Mindset Committees

Both Dr. Glass and Dr. Crace waived their honorariums, asking instead that the funds be used in support of student well-being initiatives. The Office of the Executive Vice President/Vice President Academic Affairs has supplemented these funds to offer program sponsorship of $5,000 to each university student mental health subgroup to implement a student focused well-being initiative. Each of the 4 sub-groups (UIUC, UIS, UIC and UICCOM) has been charged to develop an initiative that will promote mental health and wellness.

 

Student Mental Health Resources

Faculty/Staff Resources