While the effects of the pandemic on the mental health of college students can vary across race and gender, few studies have explored the role of hardships and university assistance in these disparities, as well as how these disparities can manifest themselves differently across intersections of race and gender. We address this gap by using unique survey data (n = 417) from two large graduate schools of social work, public health, and social policy in the United States. Using multi-group structural equation modeling, we explore how material hardships, academic hardships, and university assistance needed mediates the relationship between race and mental health, including depression and anxiety. We also explore how gender moderates these relationships. We find that Black students are directly related to material hardships and—through these hardships—indirectly related to increased depression, indicating mediation. However, material hardships did not mediate the relationship between race and anxiety. Furthermore, while academic hardships mediated the relationships between race and depression, as well as race and anxiety, these relationships were only significant for females, indicating moderated-mediation. Moreover, although university assistance needed mediated the relationship between race and depression for females only, university assistance needed mediated the relationship between race and anxiety for both males and females. We close with implications for policy and practice.
Jabbari, J., Ferris, D., Malik, S., & Bessaha, M. (2022). Intersecting Race and Gender Across Hardships and Mental Health During COVID‑19: A Moderated‑Mediation Model of Graduate Students at Two Universities. Race and Social Problems. https://doi.org/10.1007/s12552-022-09379-y