The Impact of Schools on Mental Health: An Obermann Conversation


Schools play a crucial role in young people's mental health, something that became extremely clear during the COVID-19 pandemic. According to the CDC, in 2021, 37% of high school students reported they experienced poor mental health, and 44% reported they persistently felt sad or hopeless during the past year. Schools provide connectedness to mentors, friends, and services. At the same time, they can also be sites of difficulty in the form of bullying or stress from learning obstacles. 

In this conversation, we will learn more about research and resources available in our area, including the work of the newly formed Scanlan Center for School Mental Health.


  • Allison Bruhn, Executive Director, Scanlan Center for School Mental Health 
  • Maithreyi Gopalan, Assistant Professor, Education & Public Policy, Penn State University
  • Lindsey Schluckebier, Curriculum Coordinator: K-12 Counseling & Health, Iowa City Community Schools
  • Shannon Lea Watkins, Assistant Professor, Community & Behavioral Health

This virtual event is free and open to all, but registration is required.

Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to attend all University of Iowa–sponsored events. If you are a person with a disability who requires a reasonable accommodation in order to participate in this program, please contact in advance at