College is the time in a young person's life when they learn about the meaning of balance. It's exams, group projects, tests, extracurricular activities, and a job or two.
With so much falling on their shoulders it's not hard to imagine that we would be stressed or even anxious about what's to come. Is this stress preparation for the real world or too much to handle for college students?
Lisa Riley, the assistant clinical manager for emergency services says that nursing school was a different kind of stress than what she feels in her day-to-day life.
She says, "My job stress is not only mentally stressful but physically stressful as well... feeling and dealing with stress in school helped me cope with that."
Multimedia journalist, Jetske Wauran echoes Riley's thoughts.
"In college my mind was racing," says Wauran. "But for me work is more stressful because of short deadlines."
It would seem that for most college students the biggest stressor would be course work and the academic side of college. However, Cognitive Behavioral Therapist Dr. Donna Wilcox says college students are facing more stress than just their next exam.
According to statistical data the top stressors are student loans, cost of education in general, borrowing money for college, the need to find a job after college, and, finally, the academic challenge of the course load.
Wilcox says that there are many different layers of stress a college student faces. This includes finding their voice and their individuality among their peers while also trying not to alienate the family they've left behind. They're also questioning the path they have chosen to take.
Did they pick the right major?
Will they get a job with this degree?
When should they start applying for jobs?
In addition many students are struggling with friend drama, family drama, personal dilemmas linked to faith, sexual orientation, and other deeply personal issues.
While it may appear that college students are just worried about whether or not C's get degrees, they are actually in the midst of a "real world" storm.
They are caterpillars emerging from their cocoons in a world they are still trying to figure out all while trying to understand themselves.
Does this prepare them for the future? Check back with them in a few years.