Date of Defense


Date of Graduation




First Advisor

Gary Bischof

Second Advisor

Samuel Beasley


This paper reviews the mental health and well-being of students of color at a Midwestern public university. The paper presents data from the Healthy Minds Study and combines this information with findings from a focus group of students of color at the university. The focus group was conducted as part of the university’s involvement in the Equity in Mental Health Framework Implementation Pilot Project. The Equity in Mental Health Framework was created through a partnership of The Steve Fund and The JED Foundation, and identifies ten strategies and recommendations for universities to implement to support students of color on campus. The quantitative portion of this study presents results from the Healthy Minds Study, including those related to stigma around mental health, incidence of various mental health problems, and the utilization of counseling and medication services. The qualitative portion of this study offers a presentation of the findings from a one-hour focus group with six students at the university, five of the six students identifying as students of color. The focus group transcript was analyzed using the qualitative research method of thematic analysis. Themes identified from the focus group were clustered around four different areas, which include: a) Administration and Campus Culture, b) Experiences with Diversity and Inclusion, c) Utilization and Accessibility of Counseling Services, and d) Practical Student Suggestions. Themes and subthemes are presented in each of these areas, and an overview of the findings is presented in a thematic map. A cross comparison between some of the quantitative and qualitative data is included in the discussion. Limitations of the study and recommendations for enhancing the mental health and well-being of college students of color are also presented.

Access Setting

Honors Thesis-Open Access

Raquel Rice Thesis Defense Presentation.pdf (1216 kB)
Defense Presentation