Mental Health Utilization Pathways During COVID: Results from a Private University




Delacot, Jannae

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The majority of people who experience symptoms of mental illness never receive treatment for their mental health and college students are no different. This thesis examines college students’ mental health service utilization journeys. Analyzing data collected from a survey given to students at Baylor University in the spring of 2021, this study looks for connections between informal and formal mental health service utilization as well as past support and peer networks. This research examines the data from perspective of the network-episode model of mental health utilization. This thesis tries to better understand the illness career and the social support systems that best correlate to mental health service utilization. The findings suggest that current and past social support provided by friends and family are associated with higher rates of utilization. Analysis of religious support indicates that there is little association between utilization rates and receiving informal support from their religious community. The stress associated with the COVID-19 pandemic correlates with utilization rates and perceived need of help. The pathways to utilization are diverse. This thesis provides a closer understanding of utilization among students.