Today’s college students are trying to balance academics, independent living, and a healthy lifestyle. Students need to prioritize good mental health while in college. This can be challenging while also becoming a successful student.

The American College Health Association informs colleges that mental health needs are almost directly related to measures of academic success. Students who reported psychological distress also reported receiving lower grades on exams or important projects; receiving lower grades in courses; receiving an “incomplete” or dropping courses altogether; or experiencing a significant disruption in thesis, dissertation, research, or practicum work.

Learn what challenges Missouri college students face and what can help them practice mental wellness, and what resources are available.

  • Zora Mulligan - Introduction
  • Rachel Jones - Overview of survey results and discussion of student success and mental health
Zora Mulligan
Missouri's Commissioner of Higher Education
Zora Mulligan has served as Missouri’s Commissioner of Higher Education since August 2016. During her time as commissioner, Ms. Mulligan led efforts to restructure state government to bring the agencies responsible for postsecondary education, workforce development, and economic research together to form one new department, the Missouri Department of Higher Education & Workforce Development.

Ms. Mulligan previously served as chief of staff to the University of Missouri System president, executive director of the Missouri Community College Association, and assistant attorney general. She is a native of West Plains, Missouri, and a graduate of Drury College and the University of Kansas.
Rachel Jones
Manager of Trauma Informed Treatment for the Division of Behavioral Health, Department of Mental Health
Rachel Jones is the Manager of Trauma-Informed Treatment for the Division of Behavioral Health, Department of Mental Health. In her current role, she provides trauma-informed training, consultation, and technical assistance with various projects to further implement trauma-informed knowledge, practices, and treatment. Additionally, she assists the Office of Disaster Services in state-wide response through the Missouri Crisis Counseling Program. Prior to this, she worked as Regional Director of Youth Services in a Certified Community Behavioral Health Organization. She is a Licensed Professional Counselor and received Bachelor’s Degree in Sociology, a Minor Degree in Black Studies, and a Master’s Degree in Educational, School, and Counseling Psychology from the University of Missouri-Columbia.
Drew Adkins
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