ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — The New York State Assembly held a hearing on Wednesday to address the mental health needs of students in higher education.

Before the COVID-19 pandemic, higher education institutions struggled to meet the demand for mental health support for their students. According to a survey conducted by Healthy Minds Study, over 60% of college students in 2020 through 2021 experienced at least one mental health problem.

The assembly said they planned to gather the necessary information that will help them form the next steps to meet the demand for mental health support.

Ann Marie T. Sullivan, the commissioner of the New York State Office of Mental Health, recommended having open communication between students, faculty, and resources to help students face issues they may have.

“Connecting individuals with treatment and supports early can help to ensure that the interruption to academic implicational goals is minimal,” Sullivan said. “We know that most campuses provide on-campus counseling to students. However, it’s important that colleges work with community-based providers for individuals that may need more intensive treatment services.”