SIU students are feeling the stress, Daily Egyptian poll finds


By Brey Mong-Delane, @Breymong_DE

Thirty percent of SIU students say they are extremely stressed, according to poll conducted by the Daily Egyptian. 

The poll collected 1,095 student responses on how stressed students are on an average school day. When asked what the main cause of their stress is, 85 percent of responders reported school being the No. 1 cause. 

Fifteen percent of responders reported family, relationships and work as other causes. 


“The university sets standards that are impossible to reach without forgoing some aspect of personal health, whether that be sleep, mental health, immunity to disease or anything else,” one responder wrote on the anonymous poll conducted by SurveyMonkey. “When so much weight is coming down, something has to give. It can’t be school, so it’s the individual.”

Dawn Null, a registered dietitian and wellness coordinator at the Wellness and Health Promotion Services, said a survey by the National College Health Assessment suggested 30 percent of SIU students experience stress that negatively affects their education.

“Consequently, we wrote a grant and were awarded the funds to design the Healthy Saluki Dawg Lounge,” she said.

The lounge, located in the Student Health Center, includes stress reducers such as a massage chair, yoga mats, a sandbox and tips and techniques to help cut stress. 

“If not managed, stress can be debilitating and can negatively affect students mentally as well as physically,” Null said. “That being said, everyone experiences stress. It’s a matter of learning what works for you in managing it.”

When asked how well students were managing their stress, 7 percent of respondents said they were not stressed at all, 54 percent reported handling their stress decently or somewhat well while 39 percent reported they could be better at handling it. 

Some said they attempt to stay organized or exercise. 


“I try to keep things in perspective. I know that it is only temporary. I will be done with school soon,” another student said. “I’m also not the most organized person so when school starts getting really stressful I try to stay as organized as possible so as to not add any extra stress.”

Although SIU has provided the Dawg Lounge and counseling services for students who want to manage stress, only 16 percent of the respondents reported actually using on-campus services to help manage their stress. 

More information about services to help reduce stress can be found at or 618-453-3311.

Brey Mong-Delane can be reached at [email protected] or 618-536-3325.