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Youth network set up to give voice to concerns of university students, such as mental health, employability

SINGAPORE — A network of youth representatives from five Singapore universities was launched on Saturday (Feb 26) to give voice to issues faced by undergraduates, and it will begin its work by prioritising building better mental health support systems in institutes of higher learning.

The network is designed to give voice to concerns of students across the five autonomous universities which are members.
The network is designed to give voice to concerns of students across the five autonomous universities which are members.

SINGAPORE — A network of youth representatives from five Singapore universities was launched on Saturday (Feb 26) to give voice to issues faced by undergraduates, and it will begin its work by prioritising building better mental health support systems in institutes of higher learning.

The Inter-University Network (IUN) said in a news release that it also aims to focus on building support for vulnerable university students, employability concerns, as well as environmental and sustainability issues.

The network represents some 65,000 students across the five student unions in the National University of Singapore (NUS), Nanyang Technological University (NTU), Singapore Management University (SMU), Singapore University of Technology and Design (SUTD), and Yale-NUS College.

The IUN itself comprises leaders from the respective universities’ student governments and unions.

Under the IUN, student union leaders will recommend possible policy initiatives to the Government for consideration, facilitated by the National Youth Council.

As its first initiative, the network said it will be working with clubs and interest groups in six universities — NUS, NTU, SMU, SUTD, Singapore University of Social Sciences and Singapore Institute of Technology — to understand common mental stressors experienced by undergraduates.

This will include looking into existing prevention and intervention mental health support for students in their respective universities, as well as possible gaps in such support systems.

“The IUN will also be evaluating the impact of mental health stigma in attitudes and behaviours common to university students, such as delivering on commitments, hustle culture and help-seeking (from health care services or trusted people in the community),” said the network.

Once the findings are ready, IUN said it will be shared with university administrations, government agencies, as well as undergraduate student leaders “who have an interest in mental wellbeing issues”.

IUN added that its proposed recommendations will be made available in a written report, which the network aims to present at a mental health forum later this year.

Related topics

autonomous universities National Youth Council

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