Stress Leads to Depression in College Students

By Cayla Cade

Leaving high school and proceeding to college can be exciting but it can also be stressful. Colleges in Washington, D.C may cause stress within young adults’ lives, which can lead to depression, according to an expert.

Cindy Liu, an associate professor in the Department of Environmental and Occupational Health and Chief Medical Officer of Antibiotic Resistance Action Center at the George Washington Milken Institute School of Public Health in Washington D.C. reports, “the rate of students suffering from depression or anxiety is much higher now than it was in 2009, when the last survey was conducted.”

Liu also said, “as students progress through college, the chances of experiencing stressful situations increases. That may be due to increased academic and other pressures.” 

Stress in schools can affect a lot of people. 

A student can become stressed in school because of their grades, or from feeling unprepared, or the pressure to be an overachiever. Something outside of school such as financial problems or family issues can happen which then can lead to poor grades and performances. 

Sometimes people can get confused on whether or not they are depressed or just sad. Moses Bossenbroek, 20, of Howard University said, “Sad is an emotion that is noticeable. It’s one of the most important emotions that people can feel. But emotions don’t last.”

He also said, “Where you’re depressed, that’s something within your mind, the chemical imbalances that’s creating a situation where you constantly feel down. It comes it many different ways because there’s different types of depression.”

Depression can take an emotional toll on your mental health and life.

Georgetown University student Teadora Lancaster, Class of ‘20 said, “Being in college is just really stressful on its own but then when you have other factors affecting you not just college but work and family. My grandpa had passed away when I was a sophomore in college and that really took a toll on me. And I was already going through some stuff with school, struggling with grades and also just making sure I had enough money and working to buy my books and things like that at the time. So there was just a lot of pressure on me and stress. 

“And a lot of sadness from loss. But once I started talking to the right people and going to counseling sessions and therapy, which i believe everyone should do even if you’re not depressed, it’s just good to talk to somebody who is objective and not unbiased. I also surrounded myself with a lot of great people, friends and family.” 

As a community, people can help spread awareness of stress and depression, let others know that it’s OK to express their emotions, and create counseling sessions for those in need. 


A man is holding his head while being on his laptop. Photo by Tim Gouw from Pexels.


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