By Emily KallmanPublished Mar 05, 2018 02:04:10A lot of young people are being turned off by the college experience, and they’re finding it hard to make friends and find a job.
That’s according to a new study by the Associated Press.
The AP examined a survey of nearly 400 college students in the U.S. and found that they had been asked the question, “What’s your biggest regret about college?”
More than two-thirds of the students, however, said they had experienced unwanted sexual contact in college.
That number jumped to more than one-third of all respondents who said they experienced sexual harassment, according to the AP survey.
“It’s just really discouraging to see people in the middle of college who are trying to figure out if they want to continue their education,” said Katherine Smith, director of the university’s Sexuality and Gender Studies Center.
Students who said their college experiences had led to unwanted sexual touching were more likely to be female and lower in SAT scores, which indicate a student’s potential for academic success.
More than half of the women who reported unwanted touching were at the top of their classes.
The men were more evenly split.
“College students who experienced unwanted contact reported having experienced more sexual harassment than students who did not,” Smith said.
Students also reported having a lot of friends and not having many close ones.
They were less likely to feel like they had a close circle of friends in college than they did in high school.
“I’m still finding it difficult to find a good date,” said 18-year-old student Anna Stoll, who has struggled with sexual harassment in college, particularly on campus.
“I’m having a hard time finding a partner.”
Students who say they were sexually harassed also reported that the college environment was a more hostile place to live than they would have thought.
They reported that they would be told to “get your ass over here” if they were uncomfortable at a party.
“The environment is just so hostile, it just makes me feel really uncomfortable,” said 21-year old student Lora Pang.
Students are also reporting they are not getting the support they need from their college organizations.
“A lot more people are trying the ‘what can I do?’ approach,” said Lorna Wootton, who is the vice president for the Center for Campus and Community Engagement at the University of Arizona.
“A lot is missing.
It’s just a lot to be doing and not have a lot going on.”
Students say they are worried that colleges are not taking the problem seriously enough.
“In my experience, I think a lot is really not being taken seriously,” said Stoll.
“That’s a lot that I have to deal with and a lot more that I don’t.”