At the annual ADEC (Association of Death Education and Counseling) conference, I spoke with David Fajgenbaum about college students and bereavement

In the video below, David discusses how college student handle loss and deal with grief.

Here are some key takeaways from the video:

  • Losing someone at any age is never easy, but losing someone while you’re in college is particularly difficult for a few reasons.
  • Losing someone while in college is difficult because it’s usually the first time a young adult is away from home for the first time and away from those supportive resources.
  • College students are also developing new relationships on campus, and most of the time they’re not deep enough relationships to be able to share grief experiences.
  • On top of those things, when students are in college there’s also the sense that they’re supposed to be having the best 4 years of their life. With that in mind, there’s never a good time to tell someone that a loved one is dying.
  • The most difficult part of experiencing loss in college is that, since no one is talking about it, every single student who is bereaved goes through their grief completely alone.
  • David runs something called The Service Group, which is on 45 college campuses across the United States. The idea behind The Service Group is to get students involved in community service, often in memory or in honor of a loved one who has passed away. This provides an opportunity for students to get together and support each other.
  • For further resources about college students and grief, David recommends visiting

For more video interviews, please see the Open To Hope YouTube channel.

Gloria Horsley

Dr. Gloria Horsley is an internationally known grief expert, psychotherapist, and bereaved parent. She started "Open to Hope" to help the millions in the world with grief. She is a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and Clinical Nurse Specialist, and has worked in the field of family therapy for over 20 years. Dr. Horsley hosts the syndicated internet radio show, The Grief Blog which is one of the top ranked shows on Health Voice America. She serves the Compassionate Friends in a number of roles including as a Board of Directors, chapter leader, workshop facilitator, and frequently serves as media spokesperson. Dr. Horsley is often called on to present seminars throughout the country. She has made appearances on numerous television and radio programs including "The Today Show," "Montel Williams," and "Sallie Jessie Raphael." In addition, she has authored a number of articles and written several books including Teen Grief Relief with Dr. Heidi Horlsey, and The In-Law Survival Guide.

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