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Promote the development of tools and skills at the University, core topic to achieve the emotional wellbeing of students.

"Psychopathological disorders in young people are high, with no view of a possible decrease," said psychologist David Ramirez at the University

FotoManuelCastells/Speakers at the workshop on Emotional Well-being and development staff organized by the high school Core Curriculum

16 | 12 | 2022

Has psychopathology increased in young people or has a name been given to something that has always existed? This was one of the questions addressed by the clinical psychologist and director of the Psicosalud Pamplona center, David Ramirez, during his intervention in a workshop on Emotional Wellbeing and development staff at the University of Navarra. The meeting was organized by the high school Core Curriculum of the academic center and is part of the line of work Health and Well-being of Strategy 2025. 

According to Ramírez, we are facing a scenario where the prevalence of psychopathological disorders in young people, such as anxiety, addictions or eating disorders, are high, "with no prospect of a possible decrease". Specifically, he described as "worrying" the impact that these disorders have on university students. "This fact sample the need to develop tools and skills to address this challenge, offering from the university institution means to promote the potential of students," he said.

The way in which these young people have been educated is one of the factors that influence the lack of essential skills to prevent these borderline situations at development . The expert analyzed four educational parenting styles - authoritarian, democratic, permissive, negligent - and how over the generations one style or another has predominated. Thus, he explained, we have gone from a more authoritarian style, where duty and demand prevailed, and attending to emotions was not important; to a permissive model , which gives rise to overprotection, decreasing the demand perceived by the learners. "Nowadays, the emotional panorama and an excessive sentimentalism mark the way of facing reality and how freedom, emotion, will and emotional wounds are perceived". 

Faced with this reality, the psychologist continued, the university institution should not lower the Degree requirements, since "this Education is chosen freely, voluntarily and elective subject". If the person has not developed the necessary aptitudes, skills and competencies, the challenge for this institution is to adapt and strike a balance between the demands and a style educational more based on emotion than on the imposition of criteria or duties. "Emotion, an essential aspect of the human being, like thought or behavior, must be one more tool , which we must combine to achieve the formative successes of society. The search for balance does not seem easy when in plenary session of the Executive Council XXI century psychopathology appears increased and in it, anxiety, depression, eating disorders or addictions are so prevalent among the university population," adds Ramirez. 

The workshop had the intervention of Concepción Naval and Jesús de la source, dean and Associate Dean of research of School of Education and Psychology respectively. Also, the researcher of high school of Culture and Society Gonzalo Arrondo moderated a roundtable with students and graduates in which some of the most common difficulties of students were shown. 

David Ramírez, clinical psychologist and director of the Psicosalud Pamplona center.

Counseling, core topic for university students' wellbeing

Student counseling, with the goal to provide a comprehensive training to students "beyond the purely academic limits", is one of the keys that the expert stressed. "Listening to student, getting to know them in depth to be able to advise and guide them based on their reality, providing them with tools to face their university stage or helping them to generate vital objectives are the keys to good counseling to bring out the potential of student". 

Cultivating an enriched social life, encouraging the knowledge in a cultural, spiritual, supernatural or sports dimension; or the submission to the other through volunteer activities were examples of tools that Ramirez suggested to foster a climate of emotional wellbeing. "In the case of psychopathologies, it is necessary to have a team of professionals with expertise in mental health," explained the psychologist. Some of the ideas were to bet on agreements with professionals from Pamplona "that offer financial aid to students with certain guarantees and benefits for the university community" or to have within the institution itself "a clinical unit for psychological care to the university community where prevention, treatment and research in mental health are addressed". 

The Strategy 2025: University and Sustainability aims to contribute to the sustainable development that today's society needs through its research, professor and welfare work, and at partnership with other corporations. Caring for people and the environment is at the heart of all its projects. The projects framed in the axis "Education Transforming" focus efforts on improving the learning of students, whatever their economic status , attending to their state of health and welfare, the development integral of their capabilities and the training continued alumni and professionals in general need throughout their lives.