2018 Reports

    Data Sources: Increasing Number of Graduate and Professional Students Are Former Pell Recipients

    July 2018

     

    The latest national data suggest that increasingly more former Pell recipients—thus, students from low-income backgrounds—are pursuing graduate and professional programs. However, the data also suggest that many of them begin their advanced education with sizeable undergraduate debt and continue to rely on student loans to finance their education. Graduate schools should proactively help these students make informed financial aid decisions and manage and reduce their borrowing and debt.

     

    Pressing Issue: Mental Wellness of Graduate Students

    April 2018

     

    A number of recent studies have drawn attention to the mental health challenges experienced by graduate students. Studies note that the prevalence of mental health challenges among PhD students is higher than that of the highly-educated general population, and much higher than in the general population. The most recent study published in Nature Biotechnology reported that 39% of their participants, mostly doctoral candidates, fell into the moderate-to-severe depression range, while other studies reported that one in two PhD students has experienced psychological distress, and one in three is at risk of a common psychiatric disorder. Some factors known to adversely affect the mental wellness of graduate students have also been noted in CGS’s recently concluded “Doctoral Initiative on Minority Attrition and Completion (National Science Foundation grant number 1138814)” project. In that study, we found that underrepresented minority doctoral candidates in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics fields were more likely to feel isolated from other students and worried about their mental or physical health than their peers.

     

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