More than one in three college students who gamble borrow money, according to a new study.
A survey of 2,000 students across the UK found that 80% of them have gambled and 41% of this group admit that gambling has had a negative impact on their university experience, including missing classes, homework deadlines and social activities.
More than a third (35%) use money from their student loan, overdraft, borrowed from friends or take out payday loans to help finance their gambling. Nearly one in five students (19 %) admits to using his student loan to gamble.
The independent research, conducted by Censuswide, was jointly commissioned by GAMSTOP, the National Online Self-Exclusion Program, and The Young Gamers and Gamblers Education Trust (YGAM), a charity that educates and protects vulnerable people from the harms associated with gambling and gambling.
Average student gambling spending is £31.52 per week and almost one in five students (18%) admit to spending more than £50 per week, although 45% say they spend no more than £10 per week. week. Almost four in ten (38%) say they gamble at least once a week, and 63% gamble at least once a month.
More than one in four (28%) say they gamble as often or more often than before the pandemic and 29% say they spend the same or more than before the pandemic. The most popular gambling products during the pandemic were the National Lottery (32%), online sports betting (25%) and online bingo (18%).
Nearly half of students who gamble (46%) say earning money is a motivation – the most common reason given – and one in four (25%) say they like the risk. More than half (52%) say gambling makes them excited and one in three (33%) say it makes them happy, compared to one in five (21%) who describe feeling anxious.
Of students who gamble, more than one in three (36%) have invested in cryptocurrency in the past 12 months, compared to just 17% of non-gaming students.
Students also revealed that their friends are the biggest influence on their game (34%) with almost one in four (23%) most influenced by social media and 14% of students identifying gambling advertising money as a key influence on their game.
The new research on student gambling is the first published since the pandemic and follows previous research commissioned by YGAM in 2019. The previous report produced by Red Brick Research found that 264,000 students in the UK were at some risk of game-related damage with around 88,000 already set. as compulsive gamblers.
Following the release of the report, YGAM is partnering with GAMSTOP and RecoverMe, an app that provides self-help tools for people with a gambling problem, to launch a campaign to raise awareness of the harms of gambling among students and to promote support for students who may be struggling. During the ‘Gambling Support University Tour’, the three organizations will visit university campuses across the UK to speak to students and university staff. YGAM will also provide City & Guilds assured training to university teams to better equip them to support their students. A “Gambling Support University Tour” can be arranged by contacting [email protected]
ash bray, 29, is studying mental health nursing at King’s College London, having studied at the University of Leeds and experienced the harms of gambling first hand during his postgraduate studies. He talked about how easy it was to get caught up in the game.
“When you go to college for the first time and you have student funding, money from your parents, and other financial supports, you may be tempted to gamble recklessly. It took over my life – I wasn’t studying, I was just sitting in my hallways playing. In my second year of college, I ended up playing my student loan within the first 24 hours.
“It is important that students have access to organizations, such as YGAM, to educate them about the game and provide them with support and that they are aware of essential tools such as self-exclusion if they encounter problems. with their game. I know it would have benefited me when I was at my lowest”.
Daniel Bliss, YGAM’s Director of External Affairs, said, “This research provides us with valuable insights into student behaviors during the pandemic. We want to build on this work to better understand how our programs can protect and support students. The findings reiterate the importance of educating our young people about the risks and harms associated with gambling. Education is a powerful tool to ensure students are equipped with the knowledge and understanding to help prevent harm . »
Fiona Palm Tree, CEO of GAMSTOP, said, “Gambling harm on our campuses is a topic that is seldom discussed, but for any student with gambling issues, self-exclusion can give them valuable respite while they seek relief. additional help. With online gambling becoming more prevalent during the pandemic, the research shows the importance of raising awareness of a free online self-exclusion service available to everyone.”
Adil Nayem, co-founder of RecoverMe, said, “This research highlights how the student population can be a high-risk group for gambling-related harm. We created RecoverMe when a close friend of ours at the university was struggling with a gambling addiction and didn’t know where to turn. RecoverMe offers students multiple strategies to manage acute urges and support those who suffer from a gambling problem with a low-profile, flexible, evidence-based program. proofs “.