Articles, Information and Research

Because we are curious, we are always learning about young adults and are eager to share what we discover with you.

The National Lutheran Campus Ministry Research Project

A multi-phase study exploring the spirituality of young adults on college campuses providing an overview of both the cultural realities of college life, as well as best practices for engaging with 18-24 year-olds.  To read the study in its entirety please visit

Information on Gen Z

Gen Z is the name of this rising generation, and includes people born between 1995 and 2015.  Many marketing agencies have research out about this generation; but we’ve been most interested in this research by Jean Twenge, and this research from Barna Research Group.  We’re still learning a lot – but Pastor Kate is surprised by the pragmatism and earnestness of this generation; which stands alongside incredible pressure to perform, increased rates of mental illness, experience with economic and political instability, and a desire to bind the brokenness that they see in our culture and systems.

Information on the Mental Health Crisis and Resources

A conservative estimate is that 1 out of 3 young adults on college campuses nationwide is experiencing an anxiety or depression diagnosis.  Pressure to perform, decreased resilience, and increasing isolation and loneliness are all contributing factors all contribute to this crisis. This high rate of mental illness not only affects the individual in crisis, but has a ripple effect in social networks, dorms, and classrooms – everyone on campus likely has a meaningful relationship with someone with a mental health diagnosis.

If you know a student at the U who is experiencing a mental health crisis, please encourage them to reach out to the U’s Student Counseling Services, one of the best centers in the country for triaging and equipping students with the resources they need for healing.  If the student is reluctant to reach out and they are in danger of harming themselves or others, call 911. If you know a student who has a friend, roommate, or classmate who is struggling with mental health, NAMI MN has some great resources and support groups for folks feeling the ripple effect.  Here are some articles helpful in understanding mental illness: