Thursday, January 27, 2011

Obama and Student Mental Health

President Obama’s State of the Union Speech stressed “winning the future (WTF).”  Citing success in China, India, and other countries, Americans, he said, need to rediscover the spirit of innovation.  College students, who supported Obama so strongly during his campaign, are evidently feeling the pressure.

The annual UCLA survey of freshmen disclosed higher levels of stress and declining mental health, the worst figures since the survey began in 1985.  Women report lower levels of emotional health than men, despite decades of feminist studies uplifting women and women constituting 57% of enrolled students.

If Obama’s proclamation to WTF puts greater stress on students in American institutions of higher learning, and if increasing female enrollment results in lower levels of emotional well-being, then the U.S. will have a hard time WTF.

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