The Journal of College & University Student Housing Vol. 47 No. 1 - 11

INCREASED DEMAND FOR MENTAL HEALTH SERVICES ON
COLLEGE CAMPUSES has prompted an expansion of what it
means to support mental and emotional well-being in the
campus community. Although college counseling centers
are vitally important, literature suggests that residence life
staff already play prominent roles in promoting college
students' mental health and responding to their concerns.
One way that residential life departments and other
student affairs offices can meet students' needs is through
promotion of students' strengths. In this study, we explored
the relationships between character strengths, subjective
well-being, and social group participation in 253 college
students. Results show a positive correlation between these
variables. We discuss implications of these findings for
student affairs professionals and paraprofessionals working
with students.

. . . students
experiencing
depression,
anxiety, suicidal
ideation, or other
manifestations
of psychological
distress may reach
out to familiar

Over the 30 or more years covered by the National Survey of Counseling Center Directors (NSCCD), directors have reported steady
increases in the severity of mental health symptoms reported by
college and university students who present for services (Gallagher,
2012b). The most frequent presenting concerns among them are
anxiety (50.6% of cases) and depression (41.2% of cases), and these
rates continue to increase (Reetz et al., 2015). The increasing rates
and awareness of mental health concerns suggest a greater need
for services provided by college counseling centers that may not
have the capacity or resources to meet these pressing demands. According to the most recent Association for University and College
Counseling Center Directors (AUCCCD) annual survey, 35.9%
of counseling centers surveyed maintain waiting lists for clients
seeking ongoing treatment, and some centers may place an average
of 64 students per year on a wait list before a given student is able
to receive services (Reetz et al., 2015).

resident assistants
who already
support these
students in other
ways.

Despite the increased severity of mental health problems (Gallagher, 2012b) and the increased use of counseling center services
that often rely on wait lists (Reetz et al., 2015), the majority of college
counseling center directors (55.1%) reported that their operating
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Journal of College & University Student Housing Vol. 47 No. 1

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Journal of College & University Student Housing Vol. 47 No. 1

Journal of College & University Student Housing Vol. 47 No. 1 - sponsor
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