Addressing mental health needs of NCAA student-athletes of colour: foundational concepts from the NCAA Summit on Diverse Student-Athlete Mental Health and Well-Being

We sought to identify concepts that may facilitate National Collegiate Athletic Association efforts to assist member institutions in addressing the mental health needs of student-athletes of colour. A two-step process was followed to generate and refine concepts, guided by Delphi methodology. First, a scoping review was conducted, including original peer-reviewed research articles that quantified or qualitatively described determinant(s) of racial or ethnic differences in athlete mental health or mental healthcare. Next, a multiday virtual meeting was facilitated to review the results of the scoping review, discuss lived experiences and generate potential concepts. Participants included a racially and ethnically diverse group of student-athletes, medical and mental health professionals, athletics administrators, diversity, equity and inclusion experts, health educators and representatives from leading organisations involved in athlete mental health. Through the consensus process, participants identified 42 concepts that member institutions might consider implementing on their campuses. Concepts were largely focused on organisational policies and practices such as staffing diversity and inclusion, expanded options for clinical support (ie, identity-relevant support groups) and within-organisation accountability. Concepts related to specific areas for stakeholder education were also identified. Institutions have the potential to play an important role in supporting the mental well being of student-athletes of colour, and the present concepts can help inform institutional action. While concepts proposed are believed to be broadly relevant across athletics settings, they would need to be further considered and tailored to reflect setting-specific organisational structures, resources and needs.