Queen’s University Principal Daniel Woolf suggests in a recent blog that as PSE institutions increasingly aim to increase their international student populations they should make sure they are aware of the unique mental health needs of these students. Woolf points out that these international students can suffer from homesickness, language barriers, isolation and perceptions of not belonging. He also suggests that while Canadian students are increasingly open about mental health issues and more likely to confide in friends or university staff, international students may not be; “as such, they may well be harder for the system to ‘catch’ before they find themselves in serious trouble,” says Woolf. These issues must be taken into account when institutions plan for international student enrolment, he concludes.
TCS Insights: While many students are effected by their transition to life attending college or university, international students may have the most to cope with. Institutions must be aware of this when recruiting international students so that they can offer proper services should students find themselves in need during their studies.