Depression and the variety of ways it manifests itself, is a part of a natural emotional and physical response to life's ups and downs. With the busy and demanding life of a college student, it is safe to assume that most students will experience periods of reactive depression in their college years. It is when the depressive symptoms become so extreme or are so enduring that they begin to interfere with the student's ability to function in school, work, or social environment, that the student will come to your attention and be in need of assistance.
Due to the opportunities which faculty and staff have to observe and interact with students, they are often the first to recognize that a student is in distress. Look for a pattern of these indicators:
Students experiencing depression often respond well to a small amount of attention for a shirt period of time. Early intervention increases the changes of the student's rapid return to optimal performance.
The UMass Lowell Red Folder contains more information for faculty and staff on warning signs of a struggling student and more.
Content adapted and with permission from the University of Kentucky Counseling Center.