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The rise of personal and mental issues in students has been accompanied by an increase in the number of students carrying guns and the frequency of mass shootings at schools in the US. A recent study (Dong, 2021) pointed out that future researchers should focus on recognizing high-risk youths and tackle their issues early on in life most appropriately according to individual differences such as age and personal circumstances.This research discusses the contributing factors to youths carrying guns to schools and analyzes the high-risk behaviors of students. It was hypothesized that their personal issues such as their mental wellness, high-risk behavior, and attitude towards school correlate with their decision to carry weapons, particularly guns on school property. It is found that the group of students who do not feel safe at school and carry weapons has a higher percentage of students who are showing depression and suicidal symptoms than the overall group of students. These students also tend to get into fights in school or outside school more often. It is also found that students who experience dating violence (sexual or physical), who do binge drinking more often, who have higher sexual activities and higher number of sexual partners, students who were bullied, and those who have been threatened or injured by a weapon at school property with a weapon are also more likely to carry guns than those who are not. The results of the analysis also indicate that the feeling of being unsafe at school has a significant effect on whether students carry guns or not.


I would like to acknowledge and give my warmest thanks to Professor Naima Shifa for her guidance and support throughout. I would also like to thank the Asher Committee for the Social Sciences for offering me this fellowship opportunity that is most valuable to my experience in DePauw University.

Source of Funding: Asher Fund

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Mathematics Commons



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