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P. 8-9: Special Section: An election for the ages

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Living, page 5

BEACON THE UNIVERSITY OF PORTLAND’S STUDENT NEWSPAPER

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for purposes of this article says she has a positive outlook on her emotional health, but it has been a long journey to feel that way. “I’ve had anxiety and depression since I was 13, so it’s been a battle for a large part of my education,” Emma said. “While stress can help motivate you to be a good student, it can also become consuming and unhealthy.” At the start of her freshman year, Emma was afraid of not fitting in, the difficulty of her classes and the cost of tuition. Emma’s stress due to the cost of tuition is a common one. According to the study, the economy is putting added pressure on students. The proportion of students taking out loans to pay for college remains high. In the past five years, the number of UP undergraduate students taking out student loans has varied between 80 percent and 87 percent. “Students might feel pressure to succeed because so much is being sacrificed (financially) by their families,” Myers said. According to Emma, her grades have suffered because she has made work a priority above school in order to pay for her education. “The economy plays a pretty large role in my academic life,” Emma said. “Balancing class and work can be real challenging. It definitely causes me a lot of stress and anxiety,

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Paul Myers Director of the University Health Center

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The emotional health of college freshmen has dropped to an all-time low, according to the University of California Los Angeles’ annual survey of freshmen at four-year colleges and universities. In the survey, “The American Freshman: National Norms Fall 2010,” the number of students who rated their emotional health as “below average” increased. Only 52 percent of students rated their emotional health as “above average,” a decline of 12 percentage points since 1985, when self-ratings of emotional health were first measured. The results of the survey are based on the responses of 200,000 incoming full-time students at four-year colleges. According to the survey, female students are more likely to have a negative view of their emotional health than male students. Women were also more likely to feel overwhelmed. “This has a lot to do with the pressures women feel to be all and do all,” Paul Myers, director of the University Health Center, said. Myers also sees other societal expectations as factors. “More women are honest and ready to pursue health care and get help than men who are socialized to take care of themselves,” he said, adding that males tend to abuse alcohol at higher rates, get into trouble and engage in riskier behavior when they do not pursue health care. A UP junior called “Emma”

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Economy, pressure to succeed plague students Caitlin Yilek Staff Writer yilek12@up.edu

www.upbeacon.net

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midterms anxiety responsibility illness death loved ones cursed sick resources help emotional health college freshmen depression tests alltime low sadness stressed out just want to scream homework frightened withdrawn emotional hurt pain finals Is something wrong with me? overwhelmed counseling negativity sleep eat better exercise advising avoid substance abuse faith love friends rely cope calm down alcohol abuse risky behavor low self- esteem worries consuming Photo Illustration by Rosemary Peters and Hannah Gray | THE BEACON tuition bills food rent freetime poor self image balance economy money

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Vol. 112, Issue 16

Thursday February 17, 2011

poor self image

pressure

Jeremy Tanzer Adjunct instructor of sociology

Zach Steinkamp Resident Assistant, junior

Tera Jannusch Peer Health Educator, senior

Beth Krautscheid Peer Health Educator, junior Photos by Kevin Kadooka | THE BEACON

Depression  

depression

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