Giving Compass’ Take:
• Colorado State University developed YOU at College, a platform that helps students recognize mental health issues in their everyday lives.
• In higher ed innovation, how can mental health resources for students be prioritized higher at more schools?
• Read about other forms of technology helping young people with mental health problems.
There are students who struggle with issues such as anxiety and depression on every college campus. Some students will seek help on their own and find a mental health counselor or other health-care professional.
But reaching students who are reluctant to come forward, or who don’t realize they need help, is another story. This is a challenge that Colorado State University and many other colleges are trying to address while balancing increasing demand from students who already use mental health services.
Three years ago, Colorado State approached a company called Grit Digital Health about working together to build a technology to reach those students who might never speak out – particularly those at risk of harming themselves or others. The campus had experienced a handful of student suicides and was looking for new ways to reach students who might need help.
The college and the tech company developed YOU at College, a platform that gives students information on how to recognize mental health issues and access resources on campus that might help them. The platform doesn’t put mental health front and center, however, and it’s not marketed to students as a “mental health” tool. Instead, the platform addresses mental health as just one part of academic success and well-being.
Students might not visit the platform thinking they have a mental health issue, said Patrias. They might just be having trouble sleeping, for example. But by searching for advice on how to get better sleep, users will find information about stress and anxiety and be directed to resources on campus that can help.
Mental health counselors at Colorado State have seen increased demand since YOU@CSU was introduced, but it’s difficult to know whether this is because more students have become aware of counseling services through the platform, said Patrias.
Read the full article about tech to help mental health by Lindsay McKenzie at Inside Higher Ed
If you are looking for more articles and resources for Tech for Good, take a look at these Giving Compass selections related to impact giving and Tech for Good.
Looking for a way to get involved?
If you are interested in Mental Health, please see these relevant events, training, conferences or volunteering opportunities the Giving Compass team recommends.
Are you ready to give?
If you are ready to take action and invest in causes for Mental Health, check out these Giving Funds, Charitable Organizations and Projects related to Mental Health.