Life in university is the source of stress and pressure. Students gradually became stressful and felt pressure. “Viva City” is an alternative way to solve this problem.
#EducationIsKillingMe became no. 1 trending on Twitter on October. University students were sharing their experience and problem for being a ‘student’. The problem they faced is about adaptation in university, pressure from themselves and their parents, old and illogical rules and laws, and the lack of freedom in expressing their views. Therefore, student’s life in the university becomes stressful and full of pressure. It is undeniable that students have high hopes for their academic result. When their hopes fail, they will feel disappointed and unworthy. Besides, it even went worse when their families give them so much pressure. Therefore, during the exam period, students tend to be more stressful and may intend to kill themselves.
Mr.Athichart Rojanahassadin, Professor of Clinical Psychology, Faculty of Liberal Arts, Thammasat University, informs that “In one year, students will be stressful for 4 times. They will stress during midterm exam 2 times and final exam 2 times. According to the survey of depression and stress in university student, one third of students have high level to severe level of stress. In this situation, parents have to understand and sympathize with them instead of putting more pressure on them.”
Inevitably, every student has stress but “fragileness” is more likely to happen to first-year students. “It is a challenge for them to adapt into a new environment. Thai students are very dependent so when they are away from their hometown, they feel stressed and anxious. Some students are very lonely and only got a friend when they enter their second year in university. Some students have to live in a dormitory so they have money problems as well. Activities between senior-junior and sotus system also create stress. Students who are elite and come from the countryside will feel stressful when they came to the city. Therefore, first-year students will feel more stressed that third-year student” Mr.Athichart says.
As it was mentioned before, students are prone to feel affected. So, Thammasat University builds Viva City in dormitory zone at Rangsit center. The center is a consulting clinic that opens 08.30am – 10pm. Viva City is on a soft opening period. There are two main services. First, the consulting clinic where student advisor will work with psychologist and psychiatrist from Thammasat hospital. Second, call center which is available 24 hours via 02-028-2222. “In the first phase of Viva City, remedy and treatment are not available yet. In a severe case, we will send students to Thammasat hospital and make them cool down” Mr. Athichart says.
However, although Viva City just opened for two months, it was informed that during 1- 31 October 2562, students come for services for 155 times. Stress is the no.1 worry for students followed by their study, their anxiousness, and their adaptation. It is too early to say whether Viva City is successful or not. According to the statistics, 2-3 students committed suicide but currently the number is zero. Viva City helps 4 cases of student in just one month, so it is a good start.
Mr. Athichart states that the main strength of consulting center is the understanding of the problem and students. In other words, we know the student’s location, so we can help them promptly. However, Viva City does not act as a hospital. “Students will be unstable during the exam period, so hospital cannot accommodate all of the students. As a result, we have part-time psychiatrist at Viva City to help students during that time. In another case, when students get recover, they can leave the hospital and stay at the dormitory. Viva City will monitor them closely” Mr. Athichart explained the cooperation with the hospital.
After the official opening of Viva City this November, we will openly advertise the center. We will also increase staffs and develop call center system to be available in 4 centers. In the near future, we will cooperate with Ooca Company to launch a consultant via video call.