Untitled Document
Brown Columbia Cornell Dartmouth Harvard Penn Princeton Yale



 Page 1 of 2 ALL12
Username Post: Penn Hoops' Student Data Analyst Commits Suicide        (Topic#20472)
Penn90 
Masters Student
Posts: 472
Penn90
Loc: The District
Reg: 11-22-04
09-05-17 12:12 PM - Post#232636    

http://ivyhoopsonline.com/2017/09/05/penn-mens- bas...

According to the article, 14 Penn undergrads have committed suicide since February 2013.

FOURTEEN.

Maybe Gutmann should stop mugging for the camera and figure out how to resolve this crisis.
Leges sine moribus vanae


 
Tiger69 
Postdoc
Posts: 2077

Reg: 11-23-04
Re: Penn Hoops' Student Data Analyst Commits Suicide
09-05-17 01:58 PM - Post#232640    
    In response to Penn90

There is nothing funny to say about this. It is a tragedy that anyone can reach this level of depression. I don't honestly know if anyone can be found at fault. But, all institutions, especially those that have so many creative and highly motivated students as the Ivies, need to have easily accessible mental health professionals for students in need.



 
Streamers 
PhD Student
Posts: 1845
Streamers
Loc: NW Philadelphia
Reg: 11-21-04
Re: Penn Hoops' Student Data Analyst Commits Suicide
09-05-17 05:21 PM - Post#232646    
    In response to Tiger69

This problem is not unique to Penn. For example, Columbia had 5 such events last year alone and this has been a chronic issue at Cornell for years. That does not make it acceptable in any way, but we have to realize this is more of a societal issue that an institutional one. Penn has considerable resources and likely can do even more than they have been doing, but they cannot solve this completely.

 
Silver Maple 
Postdoc
Posts: 2911

Loc: Westfield, New Jersey
Reg: 11-23-04
Penn Hoops' Student Data Analyst Commits Suicide
09-05-17 05:46 PM - Post#232647    
    In response to Streamers

Suicide really needs to be viewed and addressed as a public health issue, particularly among people of high school and college age. I believe Penn is taking this situation seriously, but should always be seeking new ideas and wisdom.

This is just so sad.

 
sparman 
Masters Student
Posts: 792
sparman
Reg: 12-08-04
Re: Penn Hoops' Student Data Analyst Commits Suicide
09-05-17 06:04 PM - Post#232648    
    In response to Streamers

I was going to say the same thing.

Having a wife who has taught undergrads, I will say that current students feel greater pressures, from many sources, than we (of a certain generation) did. Not an easily solved problem.

But most immediately, I can only imagine the heartbreak the family must be enduring.



 
Mike Porter 
Postdoc
Posts: 2207
Mike Porter
Loc: Los Angeles, CA
Reg: 11-21-04
09-05-17 07:41 PM - Post#232652    
    In response to sparman

This is absolutely heartbreaking for the whole community. Agree this is a serious public health issue and one that I feel we still don't really talk about... my heart goes out to the friends, family and students in general.

 
rbg 
Masters Student
Posts: 454

Reg: 10-20-14
09-05-17 08:05 PM - Post#232653    
    In response to Mike Porter

This is another way-too-common tragic event, at Penn, and colleges, in general.

While not the same as clinical depression, Frank Bruni, writing in yesterday's NY Times Review section, discussed the increasing loneliness that effects incoming first-year students. He quotes Dr. Victor Schwarts of the JED Foundation, who heads an organization that works with many schools, including Penn, in dealing with the emotional concerns of students.

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/09/02/opinion/su nday/...

Additionally, Kate Fagan of ESPNw recently released a book about Madison Holleran, a first-year Penn student athlete with the Cross Country team, who took her own life in Center City in January 2014. Fagan originally wrote about Ms. Holleran in January 2015

http://www.espn.com/espn/feature/story/_/ id/128331...

In her new book, "What Made Maddy Run", Ms. Fagan not only attempts to expand Ms. Holleran's story, but discusses depression and suicide issues in non-student-athletes and student-athletes. She also interviews mental health care professionals,, as well as student and professional suicide prevention advocates.

http://www.bykatefagan.com/what-made-maddy-run/

If anyone knows a person on Penn's campus who is having difficulties, the school's CAPS (Counseling & Psychological Services) may not be a perfect solution, but it may just be the best resource available. The group's number is (215) 898-7021.

In general, if anyone knows someone suffering from anxiety and depression and have suicidal thoughts, the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline can be contacted at 1-800-273-8255, or text CONNECT to 741741 from anywhere in the USA, anytime, about any type of crisis.


 
palestra38 
Professor
Posts: 16407

Reg: 11-21-04
09-05-17 09:14 PM - Post#232655    
    In response to rbg

There have been many good comments here. I just wonder whether the massive change in competitiveness between Penn in the '70s and '80s and now has resulted in a student body that doesn't have other outlets to express anger and depression---such as spectator sports. I think it is not a coincidence that students are not interested in Penn basketball...or Phillies (or Mets/Yankee/Red Sox) baseball or pro football as was the case then. The kind of student who essentially has to work frenetically in high school to attend an Ivy university gets to college already burned out to a certain extent, yet feels tremendous pressure to achieve. That wasn't the case before AP courses (or when there were 2 or 3 of them in senior year at most), SAT tutors, private college guidance counselors and summer pre-college programs. I think that in moving from admitting more rounded students to the highest high school achievers, we select for this problem as well. A lot of the blame, I believe, goes to the common application---the highest achievers now apply to 20 schools or more rather than 3 or 4. Thus, the competitiveness of the application process has increased exponentially. I would like to see the statistics between the competitiveness of the school's admission process and the suicide rate.

 
TheLine 
Postdoc
Posts: 3203

Age: 54
Reg: 07-07-09
09-06-17 06:57 AM - Post#232657    
    In response to palestra38

While the change in the student body and other factors may contribute, I don't think it's a primary cause. My guess is that it's a combination of things - perhaps the type of kids who are at our universities are more prone to depression + a different and more stressful environment away from the support system the student grew up with triggers extreme depression.

I don't think this is anything new. I went to Penn in the early '80s and lost one of my floormates to suicide. I never would have guessed he would have committed suicide, he seemed outgoing and happy. We spoke the day before he jumped, I didn't notice anything different with him. It's difficult for a layman to even know what's going on. He wasn't the only one who committed suicide while I was at Penn.


 
Penn90 
Masters Student
Posts: 472
Penn90
Loc: The District
Reg: 11-22-04
09-06-17 10:02 AM - Post#232660    
    In response to TheLine

All good points.

My daughter is just starting to visit colleges and we've noticed a stark contrast between small liberal arts colleges and large research universities, including Penn. The former really seem to give off a vibe of finding yourself, be intellectually curious, etc. The latter institutions all seem a little too big and pushy and, frankly, transactional.

We attended a Penn event for alums in May with an admissions director and were really put off by her emphasis on undergraduate research and innovation as products to push out. It was a really crass presentation and it underscored my growing feeling that Penn needs to ease off its approach to undergraduates as super-achievers who are now global disruptors and world leaders. You can be intellectually curious and not have to create an app or publish research that Penn can claim as its own intellectual property.
Leges sine moribus vanae


 
penn nation 
Professor
Posts: 9588

Reg: 12-02-04
09-06-17 11:25 AM - Post#232663    
    In response to Penn90

Agree with the sentiments of the posters in this thread.

My boychicks just began high school yesterday (different school for each child). Here's a brief portion of a long opening day e-mail from one of their schools, which is a private Jewish day school with an excellent academic reputation:

Over the past year, we have also embarked on a process of stepping back and taking stock of students' lived experience in [name of high school]. Students' lives seem to have gotten more frenetic and more pressured, as a result of everything from the changing college application landscape to the force exerted by technology on our lives. This self-reflection has multiple parts, some of which have been underway since last year, and will be implemented for this coming year; and others of which continue as we look to the future. The most significant change that we are contemplating is a revision to the master schedule, to achieve some of our goals of slowing down the pace of students' and teachers' days. We have planned an alternate schedule, and are now assessing whether the tradeoffs inherent in moving from our current schedule to the proposed new one make it worth doing for the 2018-2019 school year.

 
rbg 
Masters Student
Posts: 454

Reg: 10-20-14
09-06-17 12:41 PM - Post#232666    
    In response to penn nation

With regards to depression, anxiety, and suicide, many of these individuals do not show signs before they leave home. For those who are affected at an earlier age, many consciously or subconsciously, hide their symptoms and behaviors from those closest to them.

Whether depression and suicide is a growing problem or one that has become more publicly reported, it is important for everyone concerned to be willing to make it a less stigmatized issue. It is necessary for family, friends, teachers, administrators, clergy, and other community members to know the signs and symptoms, and be willing to reach out to those who may need our help. For those that may not be comfortable or experienced enough to deal with someone directly, there are experts and advocates in most communities available to assist.

At Penn, one group that can help is Active Minds. This national student organization was started by a Penn junior in the early 2000s after her brother ended his own life.

http://www.activeminds.org/about/our-story

While I am sure there are students that do thrive in a hyper-competitive environment, most, even those at elite private universities, do not. As a result, parents, students, and schools need to continue working on ways to reduce the pressure for these young adults.

For parents, we need to help students choose the right school(s) for them where they can succeed without pushing themselves to unhealthy extremes. Many times, those schools are not the ones at the top of the US World & News Report rankings.

With regards to Penn's Admissions Department, I understand that there is a constant pressure to decrease acceptance percentage while increasing yield rates. However, the school's push to fill as much of the class as possible in the Early Decision process is not helpful. It forces many students to make a rather quick decision in choosing a school that may not be the one for them. Not only do the financial options improve for many high school students in the Regular Decision process, but the extra few months away from the application frenzy gives most 17 or 18 year old students a little more maturity and perspective on their future.

With regards to extra-curricular clubs, there are many at elite schools, like Penn, that are highly selective. Last fall, the Wharton Council placed new requirements in recruiting for Wharton clubs, in response to feedback from first-years and transfer students. In the spring, the UA and SAC partnered to place requirements on student groups. These results of these requirements need to be evaluated to determine if more changes are needed.

http://www.thedp.com/article/2016/09/new-r ules-for...
http://www.thedp.com/article/2017/03/new-r ules-cha...

I'm sure there are more things to discuss, but I will end my rant for the time being ......

 
palestra38 
Professor
Posts: 16407

Reg: 11-21-04
09-06-17 02:30 PM - Post#232669    
    In response to rbg

Speaking of which, nothing turned me off more than seeing Ivy League women in miniskirts and high heels waiting in lines in 50 degree temperature outside sororities to try and impress with their looks and flirtation skills....and most will be rejected.

How did Penn develop such a competitive social atmosphere??? Again, it was nothing at all like that 40 years ago (ouch at that number)....my daughter loved Penn but was amazed (and a little outraged) at the social pressures on the women.

 
Cvonvorys 
PhD Student
Posts: 1354

Loc: Princeton, New Jersey
Reg: 10-11-06
09-06-17 03:01 PM - Post#232672    
    In response to palestra38

P38...

We are very different because nothing turns me on more than seeing women in miniskirts and high heels.

That being said, I'd be interested to know where you think these "social pressures on the women" are coming from. Hollywood? The Huffington Post? Their parents? Their peers? Themselves? All of the above? Every year, I have the pleasure and honor to interview applicants to Penn, and every year I am encouraged by the quality of these "kids" who seem not only academically driven but also well grounded and well rounded and are really cool "kids."

Fortunately I do not know the horror of losing a child to suicide, and I pray to God I never do. Do you think this problem is isolated to the pressures inherent in succeeding at an elite institution?

 
palestra38 
Professor
Posts: 16407

Reg: 11-21-04
Penn Hoops' Student Data Analyst Commits Suicide
09-06-17 03:18 PM - Post#232673    
    In response to Cvonvorys

What I find sexy and what I find somewhat dehumanizing to college kids may indeed overlap. Remember, though, that these girls are not dressing up for a night out in a club, but rather, are essentially being judged beauty pageant style for admission to a restrictive social club. And who put the pressure on them? Their peers.

Again, my daughter attended Penn and absolutely loved it. But she grew up with Penn as part of her environment and never would have been lost there. She made it a smaller school by her choices. Someone who goes primarily because it was the "best" (i.e., most competitive admission) school to which they were admitted might find it a lot harder to fit in.

And I do believe that the way Penn selects its students in 2017 does result in a student body more prone to suicide. I have no empirical data to support that but it's pretty clear that suicide is far more common now than it was 25-40 years ago and that the competitive pressures are enormously greater in not only academics, but as I noted, social opportunity.

 
SRP 
Postdoc
Posts: 3143

Reg: 02-04-06
09-06-17 03:48 PM - Post#232676    
    In response to palestra38

I just received an email from my department saying that a student (of unknown department) jumped off the parking structure next to our building and died. Everyone who witnessed or heard about it can get counseling, etc.

Depression is a very serious matter, as is suicide. Besides increasing pressures to achieve, etc., there is also a question of whether our young people are raised to be resilient and to keep unhappy things in perspective rather than put huge emotional stakes on narrow notions of success, be they social, academic, etc.. (Not a parent, so I can only go by what I read and what I hear from others.)

 
Penn7277 
PhD Student
Posts: 1165

Loc: Lancaster, PA
Reg: 11-21-04
Penn Hoops' Student Data Analyst Commits Suicide
09-06-17 04:03 PM - Post#232679    
    In response to SRP

I teach at a much less restrictive and smaller university than Penn, and usually we get a couple of communications per year from the administration telling us that a student died. Usually, it is confirmed that the death resulted from a suicide. This problem is definitely not restricted to schools like Penn. It possibly happens more often at schools like Penn, but it definitely happens at other universities of all types.

I should also add that I have taught there for going on 29 years, and I can say that these events are occurring more frequently in recent years.

Edited by Penn7277 on 09-06-17 04:05 PM. Reason for edit: No reason given.

 
Streamers 
PhD Student
Posts: 1845
Streamers
Loc: NW Philadelphia
Reg: 11-21-04
09-06-17 05:39 PM - Post#232683    
    In response to Penn90

I too have a daughter who is beginning the college selection process as a HS junior. She also attends a private (Friends) school here in Philly that made substantial changes to its schedule, in part, with the goal of giving the kids a bit more flexibility and reducing stress. Of course, since it is a big change, it is having the opposite effect for time being.

We have begun to tour a variety of colleges and universities and there is no doubt the 'happy bubble' liberal arts colleges, including the highly selective ones, seem quite a bit less intense than Ivies and similar research universities. Swarthmore, for example, has an all pass-fail policy for freshmen.

We have a fair bit of experience with Penn admissions. My older girl went through the process (although she ended up choosing Duke over Penn, in part because she felt it was a better atmosphere) and I was involved with interviewing candidates at one time. I consistently found Penn admissions to be mechanical and impersonal, even for legacies. The reality is that Penn has managed to market and position itself so effectively that it can act this way and still get high yields and low acceptance rates. I agree the common app. has something to do with this, along with the revised financial aid policies.

I think, as a result. Penn is more likely to admit the kind of hyper-competitive high-intensity kid who may not be a great fit and flame out academically and socially - and foster deep depression as a result.

As a parent of a child who stands a good chance of admission should she apply, I will be very wary of considering Penn for her unless If I have any doubt she can take what the place dishes out these days.

 
Penn90 
Masters Student
Posts: 472
Penn90
Loc: The District
Reg: 11-22-04
09-07-17 03:18 PM - Post#232713    
    In response to Streamers

TBH, Streamers, I'd be fine if my daughter didn't apply to Penn at all and went only for the small liberal arts schools.
Leges sine moribus vanae


 
SRP 
Postdoc
Posts: 3143

Reg: 02-04-06
09-07-17 03:52 PM - Post#232716    
    In response to Penn90

Even discounting my personal prejudice about subject and author, I think that this year-old article has an excellent perspective:
https://origin-www.bloombergview.com/articles/2015...

 
 Page 1 of 2 ALL12
Icon Legend Permissions Topic Options
Report Post

Quote Post

Quick Reply

Print Topic

Email Topic

1858 Views





Copyright © 2004-2012 Basketball U. Terms of Use for our Site and Privacy Policy are applicable to you. All rights reserved.
Basketball U. and its subsidiaries are not affiliated in any way with any NCAA athletic conference or member institution.
FusionBB™ Version 2.1 | ©2003-2007 InteractivePHP, Inc.
Execution time: 0.157 seconds.   Total Queries: 16   Zlib Compression is on.
All times are (GMT -0500) Eastern. Current time is 04:22 PM
Top