Mental Health among Higher Education Faculty, Administrators, and Graduate Studentsaddresses how many academics who experience mental distress or mental illness are afraid to speak out because of cultural stigma and fears of career repercussions. Many academics’ reluctance to publicly disclose their struggles complicates attempts to understand their experiences through research or popular media, or to develop targeted mental health resources and institutional policies. This volume builds on the existing studies in this greatly under-researched area of mental health among faculty, administrators, and graduate students in higher education. The chapters’ research findings will help institutions communicate about mental health in culturally-competent and person-centered ways; create work environments conducive to mental well-being; and support their academic employees who have mental health challenges. This book argues that discussions of health and wellness, equity, workload expectations and productivity, and campus diversity must also cover chronic illness and disability, which include mental health and mental illness.
Dr. Teresa Heinz Housel is senior tutor in the School of Journalism, Communication, and Marketing at Massey University of New Zealand.
Table of Contents
Katie Rose Guest Pryal
Teresa Heinz Housel
Part One: Mental Distress and Mental Illness in Academic Culture
Chapter One: The Perfect Storm of Mental Health-Related Issues in Academia and the Need for Critical Research and Policies
Chapter Two: Anxiety in Academia: An Autoethnographic Account
Andrea L. Meluch
Chapter Three: Structuration of U.S. Communication Graduate Students’ Stress
Rahul Mitra, Nubia Brewster, Patrice M. Buzzanell, Julia Grzywinski, Elizabeth-Ann Pandzich
Chapter Four: “Burn It Down”: The Graduate Student Burnout Experience
Victoria McDermott, Nike Bahr
Part Two: Intersections of Mental Health and Marginalized Academic Populations: Cultural Representations and Institutional Climates
Chapter Five: Effects of Chronic Exposure to Invalidation on People of Color in Academia: An Exploratory Study
Juan S. Muhamad, Jessica Wendorf Muhamad, Maria Elena Villar
Chapter Six: First-Generation Graduate and Professional Students in the United States: A Critical Narrative Review
Erinn C. Cameron
Chapter Seven: Give and Take: Exploring the Role of Confidants When Friends Disclose Chronic and/or Mental Health-Related Information
Robert D. Hall
Chapter Eight: The Academic Amygdala: Tropes of PTSD in Higher Education News Coverage
Alena Amato Ruggerio, Erica Knotts
Part Three: Institutional Policies on Mental Health and Recommendations for Best Practices
Chapter Nine: Culturally Sensitive Mental Health Support for Higher Education Employees
Lukasz Swiatek. Ursula Edgington
Chapter Ten: Having Emotional Support Animals at College
Chapter Eleven: Navigating Boundaries While Creating Safe Spaces for Faculty and Students
Sandra Smeltzer, Dave M. Walton, Nicole Campbell
Chapter Twelve: The Mental Health Impacts of Making a Workers Compensation Claim for a Mental Injury
Philip Dearman, Beth Edmondson
Appendix: Mental-Health Related Resources for the Communication Classroom
Teresa Heinz Housel, Andrea L. Meluch, Vanessa R. Sperduti, Sandra Smeltzer
"I highly recommend Mental Health Among Higher Education Faculty, Administrators, and Graduate Students: A Critical Perspective as a very important source for presenting and examining the latest relevant scholarship concerning communication and mental health issues in higher education. We are living through a difficult time in modern society now, where mental health problems have challenged many people around the globe, especially those who are involved in academic life. Changes in the delivery of higher education, where new and evolving regulations related to pandemic prevention and control have dramatically altered the ways that students, faculty, and administrators are able to engage with one another have often fostered discomforting feelings of isolation, frustration, depression, and the strong need of social support. This book will help members of academic communities recognize these mental health communication needs and enable them to chart culturally competent and person-centered communication strategies for promoting wellbeing."
"This is a timely and important book, breaking new ground for future research in this area. Mental health in academia is endemic, but remains a taboo topic, and in the post-COVID era, where workload pressures and periods of isolation have been increasing, it is only set to worsen. Addressing this crisis, this volume’s chapters are impressively extensive and diverse in their focus."
"Housel does it again, this time turning her critical view toward the mental health of faculty members. In this well-rounded, incisive, and research-informed collection of essays, the featured scholars call into question how mental health issues for faculty and staff are treated in the academy. Importantly, the authors offer both theoretical and pragmatic considerations related to mental health and well-being, making this an especially important read for academic administrators at all levels as well as for faculty members and graduate students who plan on entering the higher education sector. The book would also make an idea-stimulating and conversation-generating text for courses in management, higher education, psychology, communication studies, or sociology. I highly recommend this text!"
View the supplemental materials HERE.