News Release 

College students experience significant grief reactions during global pandemic

St. Jude Children's Research Hospital

Research News

A new study shows that colleges students are experiencing significant grief reactions in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The paper, "College Student Experiences of Grief and Loss Amid the COVID-19 Global Pandemic," was recently published in OMEGA - Journal of Death and Dying.

"This study aimed to identify the most common non-death losses and grief reactions experienced by undergraduate and graduate college students amid the pandemic," said author Erica H. Sirrine, Ph.D., director of Social Work at St. Jude Children's Research Hospital. "What we found is that students across the U.S., even those who may not have experienced a COVID-related death, still reported a considerable number of losses and grief reactions, including avoidance and loss of control. This presents a need for practitioners to provide additional support to college students, especially those who experienced cumulative losses during the pandemic."

Sirrine, a clinical social worker and grief expert, led this research while serving as dean of the College of Behavioral and Social Sciences at Southeastern University in Lakeland, Florida.

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