About the show
A series of interviews with leaders from higher education and healthcare on the emotional and behavioral health of teens and young adults.
Ep 60 A Conversation on the Mental Health Effects of COVID-19 on Emerging Adults
June 7th, 2023 | 31 mins 45 secs
A new paper by Dr. Jeffrey Arnett, released last week by the Ruderman Family Foundation, suggests that the mental health of people between 18 and 29 has, and continues to be, disproportionately affected by the global pandemic. Arnette, a psychologist and scholar who coined the term “emerging adults” in his previous research, shows that the age group that was least at-risk physically from the virus was most vulnerable to it from a mental health perspective. MCI Executive Director Marjorie Malpiede discusses the findings with Dr. Arnette and Sharon Shapiro, Trustee at the Ruderman Family Foundation.
Ep 59 Experts Discuss Staving off “Stopping Out”
May 10th, 2023 | 28 mins 47 secs
On the latest episode of the Quadcast, MCI executive director Marjorie Malpiede speaks with Stephanie Marken, partner of the education division at Gallup, and Dr. Zainab Okolo, former strategy officer at Lumina Foundation and current senior vice president of policy, advocacy and government relations for The JED Foundation. Together, the two experts discuss the results and implications of a recent report co-produced by Gallup and Lumina, called: “Stressed Out and Stopping Out: The Mental Health Crisis in Higher Education.” Among its findings, this survey reveals the critical barrier emotional stress poses to not only enrolled students finishing their degree but prospective students enrolling at all. The response from colleges and universities, Marken and Okolo suggest, must focus on developing a culture of care on campus that can see students through to graduation.
Ep 58 A Wellbeing Toolkit for High Schoolers
March 29th, 2023 | 35 mins 29 secs
This week’s guest on The Quadcast is Jen Hamilton, the director of counseling at Nobles and Greenough School, an independent middle and high school in Dedham, Massachusetts. With MCI reporter Mollie Ames, Jen discusses her experience teaching the curriculum for Yale Professor Laurie Santos’ class, Psychology and The Good Life, to secondary students. While Professor Santos is in the midst of adapting her curriculum for high schoolers, Jen was a pioneer in bringing the course to a younger audience. For years, seniors at Nobles have enrolled in her elective to learn about strategies for reducing stress and promoting wellbeing. “We would love for our kids, when they graduate Nobles, to have a toolkit for not just how to handle bumps in the road as you’re on your journey to get to college, but well through college,” Jen said.
Ep 57 To Live The Good Life, Invest in Relationships
March 22nd, 2023 | 17 mins 50 secs
“The finding we didn’t expect and that at first we didn’t believe was the people who stayed the healthiest and lived the longest were the people who had the best connections with other people,” says Dr. Bob Waldinger on this week’s episode of The Quadcast. Dr. Waldinger is the 4th director of the Harvard Study of Adult Development, which, after 85 years, is likely the longest-running study of adult life in history. Starting in 1938, it followed two groups of men in Boston from opposite socio-economic backgrounds and their families to chart determinants of wellbeing and human thriving. Today, Dr. Waldinger tells MCI Executive Director Marjorie Malpiede, the study’s findings could have critical implications for teens and college students, who are struggling with their mental health in record numbers. For people aged 16-24, the loneliest group of people in the U.S., Dr. Waldinger suggests investing in meaningful and reciprocal relationships early on can help them become happier over the course of their lives.
Ep 56 Meeting Students Where They Are: One Professor’s Approach to Care
February 22nd, 2023 | 24 mins 22 secs
This week on The Quadcast, MCI reporter Mollie Ames speaks with Sam Dolbee, her former advisor at Harvard College and a current assistant professor of history at Vanderbilt University. As professors around the country find themselves on the frontlines of the student mental health crisis, Sam discusses his experiences providing care to students who are struggling. Conscious of the wide range of stressors his students are facing, Sam is willing to adapt his teaching to meet the needs of his students, as individuals or a group. “I think working with all students involves meeting them where they are and treating them like the complex, interesting human beings that they are,” he said.
Ep 55 The “risk-reward” problem of college student substance use
February 1st, 2023 | 23 mins 17 secs
On a new episode of the Quadcast, MCI reporter Mollie Ames talks to Dr. Amelia Arria, director of the Center on Young Adult Health and Development and professor of Behavioral and Community Health at the University of Maryland School of Public Health. Dr. Arria discusses the latest trends in substance use among college students, including how their behaviors have evolved throughout the pandemic and the connection to overall wellbeing.
As students turn to substances to avoid uncomfortable situations, and then downplay potential consequences, Dr. Arria explains the challenge is changing this “risk-reward balance.” “What colleges have to offer is this challenging environment where you can really find your purpose in life and find meaningful friendships,” she says. “That’s part of the long-term reward. It’s not this immediate gratification associated with substance use.”
Ep 54 From classroom to conference room: Supporting the mental health of young professionals
January 18th, 2023 | 27 mins 13 secs
This time on the Quadcast, MCI associate director Dana Humphrey hosts Sarah Lipson, PhD, EdM, principal investigator of the Healthy Minds Network (HMN). Together, they review the results of a new survey: the mental health of young professionals, a partnership between MCI, HMN, the American Association of Colleges and Universities (AAC&U) and the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE).
Although prominent researchers like Dr. Lipson have spent years investigating the mental health of college students, much less is known about what happens to these young people after they leave campus. From their survey findings, Dana and Dr. Lipson discuss what leaders in both the workplace and university setting can take away to help support the wellbeing of this population. The survey was conducted by Morning Consult.
Ep 53 Experts discuss pandemic fallout on students, see new year as opportunity
January 10th, 2023 | 17 mins 3 secs
This week on the Quadcast, two members of MCI’s Board of Directors, Andrew Shepardson and Zoe Ragouzeos, join Executive Director Marjorie Malpiede to share their takeaways on college student mental health and wellbeing from the last year. Andrew is Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students at Bentley University, and Zoe is Executive Director of Counseling and Wellness Services at New York University.
Together, these experts discuss their observations on how the pandemic has left students socially and emotionally stunted, with new situational anxiety or exacerbated clinical issues. Young people are struggling to engage not only socially with peers but in the physical classroom, which has become unfamiliar territory for many. The way forward, they say, demands campus-wide efforts—from students, faculty and staff—to provide support and prioritize wellness.
Ep 52 A Quadcast Series: Peer Programs in College Student Mental Health, Part 2
November 22nd, 2022 | 20 mins 23 secs
In the second episode of MCI’s Quadcast series on peer support, executive director Marjorie Malpiede speaks with Dr. Ben Locke, chief clinical director of Togetherall, a digital, clinically moderated peer support network. Dr. Locke was formerly the director of counseling at Penn State University, where he was also director of the Center for Collegiate Mental Health. Dr. Locke talks about the “treatment gap” on college campuses and how colleges can respond. When it comes to a population-level issue like mental health challenges, he says, there’s “no single answer.” Yet peer support—in a variety of forms—may work alongside traditional services to be part of the solution.
The episode concludes with a conversation between Malpiede and Dr. Zoe Ragouzeous, the clinical director at MCI and head of counseling at New York University, who respond to some of Dr. Locke’s comments.
Ep 51 A Quadcast Series: Peer Programs in College Student Mental Health, Part 1
November 9th, 2022 | 35 mins 24 secs
This week on the Quadcast, we start a two-part series focusing on peer support in college settings, coinciding with the recent release of a new white paper on the subject by the Mary Christie Institute and the Ruderman Family Foundation.
On this episode, MCI Executive Director Marjorie Malpiede speaks with two former student peer support leaders who have grown their programs into national peer support organizations. Daniel Mirny is the CEO of Lean on Me, a national peer-to-peer text line for mental health support, and Samuel Orley is the co-founder and chairman of The Support Network, a peer-led support group model begun at the University of Michigan. The episode concludes with a conversation between Malpiede and Dr. Zoe Ragouzeous, MCI’s clinical director and head of counseling at NYU, on what was shared and what this means for the field.
Ep 50 College Junior and Mental Health Advocate Sam Gerry on Student Suicidality
October 26th, 2022 | 16 mins 11 secs
This episode of the Quadcast marks the end of our student advocacy series co-hosted by MCI Associate Director Dana Humphrey and Carson Domey, a first-year student at the University of Texas at Austin and longtime youth mental health advocate. Humphrey and Domey talk with Sam Gerry, a junior at Bates College who has spent the last several years channeling his own trials with depression and suicidality into a range of mental health initiatives.
The founder of a charity kickball tournament supporting suicide prevention called Kick it for a Cause, Inc., Gerry has also assisted research into the impact of teen social media use and sleep habits on suicidality; how multilingual people navigate the mental health system; and the sources of stress for high schoolers in Maine. On the Quadcast, he shares how these personal and professional experiences with mental health have informed his belief in the need for preventative care on college campuses.
Ep. 49 The Dobbs Decision Impacting College Students
October 12th, 2022 | 20 mins 26 secs
Associate Director Dana Humphrey speaks with Gretchen Ely, PhD, MSW, a professor at the University of Tennessee Knoxville’s College of Social Work whose research focuses on access to reproductive healthcare. In the wake of the Supreme Court’s Dobb’s Decision which overturned Roe V. Wade and ruled that there is no constitutional right to abortion in the U.S., the landscape of reproductive healthcare has changed dramatically. Dr. Ely discusses the impact the decision is having on college students and concerns that she and other experts have about increased barriers to abortion care.