trauma

          A lot of factors may cause a
students’ distress, and its effects negatively impacts their school performance
making them being unable to focus and concentrate which decrease their level of
competency. According to Lambert, J. et al. (2014), phenomenon like natural
disasters and terror attacks, or those events that are not controlled by the
students are some of the major reasons of their distress resulting to trauma.
Philips & Herlihy (2009) supported the claim and they said that natural
disasters and devastations may greatly impact school campuses anywhere.  Advancement of media technology has a huge
contribution to this because it has been a medium for students’ exposure to
traumatic events as it is instantly reported in the news media which provide
virtual closeness to what’s happening around the globe (DeRoma et al., 2003;
Lindsey, Fugere, & Chan, 2007). Furthermore, Kim (2016) stated that besides
from natural disasters and terrorism, some examples of traumatic events that
also significantly affected a person’s distress are death of a family member, parental
abandonment, domestic abuse, rape, and serious illness. These circumstances
were no doubt been experienced by many of the students across the globe. Due to
these traumatic events , students develop signs and symptoms of Post-Traumatic
Stress Disorder (PTSD), Acute Stress Disorder (ACD), depression and other cases
of mental distress that are at a high level of increasing risk rate (Hawdon
& Ryan, 2012).  

              Lambert, J. et al., (2014) stated
that colleges are more prone to increased stress and trauma that may lead to distress
and impairments due to the stressors happening inside or outside of their
classrooms. Callahan (2017) added that college might be an exciting and
overwhelming experience to begin new opportunities but this also may lead to an
unhealthy environment which might be a source of stress and trauma. According
to Iijima (1998), among the students general population, law students are the
one who have been experiencing a great amount of dysfunctional distress. They
were more dysfunctional in all categories of psychiatric distress than that of
the general public and medical students. Shanfield & Benjamin (1985) proved
the claim as they conduct a study comparing medical and law students’
psychological distress. They found out that law students were more uncertain to
their career and they lack commitment with the legal education, which may be a
factor of their distress. Law students’ distress become constant and been
sustained as they progress through their legal education. However Iijima’s
study opposed, she stated that law students became dysfunctional few months
after they started law school and experiences increased dysfunction as they
progress through their legal education. Furthermore, law students may become
victims of emotional dysfunction upon the start of law schooling and face
continued risks throughout the study and practice. As a result, students may began
having memory problems, being unable to concentrate, diminished interests, etc.
( Sharkin, 2006). Also, students’ performance problems affect their emotional
well-being, developing anxiety and depression, and vice versa, just as how
their psychological state influence their performance. For example, hope,
optimism, and motivation may be stronger predictors of their good academic
performance (Iijima, 1998). However, Bal (n.d.) and Bloom (1999) found that trauma
does not only affect students’ mental and emotional well-being but also
physically. Its victims experience physical illnesses that are unrelated to any
injury they experience. Moreover, according to Cheshire (n.d.), we become
shocked, or always ready to fight or escape, or even shutting ourselves off
from our surrounding if our systems engulfed by different traumatic events.
Simultaneously it brings pain conditions and restricting the healthy
functioning of all our system because our physical body tends to tighten or
contract. Furthermore, Scaer (n.d.) said that “[…] stress and trauma can directly
affect the human brain and its operation. If brain operates in abnormal way it
might damage the body […]”.The symptoms of trauma may occur if the traumatic
events are kept in the brain that regulate in the body (Scaer, 2007).

 

            Interrelationships, both external
and internal, help one’s self by providing support and encouraging growth.
According to Iijima (1998), law school allows students to sever from these
connections as it focuses more on a narrow definition of success-getting high
grades and securing prestigious employment. In that case, law students lose
their interconnections and intraconnections which may affect their well-being
and greatly increase the risks of trauma and stress they may face in the
future, thereby, when a student struggling in law school faces the possibility
of failure, his/her relationships with people that support him/her during
difficult times may become unavailable which may result to more distress. Their
bond with their family parted as well as their reinforcements. Aside from
stressors within the school facilities, they may also become more vulnerable
about what’s happening outside their campuses. They may become victims of it, and
with the thought of becoming a victim, it may contribute to their trauma. Once
a person became a victim, they can either turn away from being a victim or turn
into a victimizer as well (Bloom, 1999). A person doesn’t like the feeling of
being defeated, being a victim makes them feel helpless and powerless and
losing power is a pernicious human experience. 
According to Ruback & Schaffer (2002) old victimization could be the
best foretell of a coming victimization. Past victimizations such as tortures,
domestic violence can turn a person into a victimizer. Moreover, to escape the
shell of being helpless, the victim will eventually find a way wherein he/she
can showcase his power and without realizing it, he/she can also became the
perpetrator. In that way, a person can feel satisfied and avoid the feeling of
helplessness (Bloom, 1999).