What is counseling?
Counseling is a professional relationship whose intention is to foster greater understanding about oneself and one's choices in life: personal, career, academic, etc. The counseling relationship differs from a "friendship" or other personal relationships in that it is objective. Counselors do not tell you what you "should do" or give advice. Instead, we offer active listening which helps to clarify complicated issues and uncover true wishes and feelings. We can suggest effective strategies and options for creative problem solving and planning. Counseling is a partnership whose goal is to benefit you.
How can I tell if counseling is for me?
Counseling is a good idea at any time, but particularly if you have a concern in your life that is making it difficult for you to function at your best--emotionally, academically, socially, etc. For example, if you are having difficulty concentrating on your studies, if you are feeling sad or anxious a lot of the time, if you have concerns about personal relationships, if you are feeling stressed and overwhelmed, confused by life choices--counseling can help.
What are some of the concerns that counselors at Counseling Services address?
Concerns include stress, anxiety, depression; family issues, eating disorders, alcohol and substance abuse problems--which often impact academic performance and personal relationships. Counseling Services works with individual students, but also in workshop and classroom-presentation venues, to address a wide range of topics, including learning styles, conflict resolution, test anxiety, and time management.
How confidential is counseling at Counseling Services?
No one will know what you talk about with your counselor, or even that you come to our office--unless, of course, you choose to share the information. Your counselor will always obtain your permission to speak with a family member or health care provider if he/she feels that would be helpful. Only in the event of immediate potential harm to yourself or others do we communicate on a "need to know" basis with key individuals on-and/or off-campus.
How do I connect with a counselor at Counseling Services? Is there a charge?
We see students by appointment, which you can usually arrange a day or two in advance. The Counseling office is open year round, Monday through Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and weekday evenings by appointment. Some students have regular weekly appointments, and some may see a counselor only once or twice. In case of emergency, tell a staff member a little bit about why you need to see someone quickly, and we will do our best to accommodate you.
What if I would rather see a counselor off-campus?
We can give you a referral to an outside community agency that accepts insurance or has a fee based on your ability to pay. Counseling Services refer students to off-campus providers when medication is a treatment option you wish to consider.