History of Mental Health on Campus
CU Health and Wellness

» History of Mental Health on Campus

  • Chapman University was on the forefront of mental health when it established its Francis Smith Center for student access in 1969 to care for veterans returning from Viet Nam.
  • Now in its 40th year, the Student Counseling Center was established in 1979 to meet the needs of students.
  • The Counseling Center was expanded to the Rinker Campus in 2018
  • Fish Interfaith Center offers mindfulness, trauma counseling, and other mindfulness services

Current Mental Health Resources

  • Student Psychological Counseling Services, Orange and Rinker Campuses
    • Includes on-campus counseling and referrals to off-campus help
  • Student Concerns Intervention Team
    • Campus leadership meets weekly to create a network of care and support for students with concerns that emphasizes early intervention and academic success/progress for students dealing with difficulties and to connect students with appropriate resources or individuals that may help address their needs.
  • P.E.E.R. (Proactive Education Encouraging Responsibility)
    • Helps students develop skills related to substance abuse prevention, sexual and relationship violence prevention, healthy communication, conflict resolution, stress reduction, and other mental, physical and social health issues.
  • Dean of Students Office - referrals and ongoing support
  • Student Health Center and Disability Services

Mental Health & COVID-19 in May 2020

In May, the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) urged Congress to take action prior to “a mental health crisis that the U.S. is not prepared for” including anxiety, depression, trauma, and substance abuse are all on the rise, and “huge increases in unemployment increase the risk of suicide.”

It may be too soon to fully calculate the impact of COVID-19 on mental health, but today we have

  • 54% of U.S. adults are very concerned about catching COVID-19
  • 46% of U.S. adults reported that their mental health was negatively impacted due to stress related to COVID-19
  • 8,000% increase in calls to the national suicide hotline, Didi Hirsch Mental Health Services in LA, from Feb. – March 2020

Mental Health & COVID-19 in August 2020

In August, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) made a study public with the following highlights showing the current impact of COVID-19 on mental health:

  • 40.9% of Americans reported at least one adverse mental or behavior health condition
  • 31% of Americans are suffering from symptoms of anxiety or depression
  • 26% Experiences symptoms of traumatic disorder
  • 13% Are using drugs or alcohol more heavily or for the first time
  • 11% Had seriously contemplated suicide