Dear Counseling, I’m a faculty member at the college. How do I best refer a student to counseling?
Thank you for your email. There are several ways to best refer a student to counseling services here on campus.
#1: Tell the student you are concerned for his/her welfare or safety. Discuss specific, observable behaviors that have made you concerned (missed classes, grades dropping). You want to avoid diagnosing or blaming.
#2: Anticipate reluctance and be positive about getting help. The Counseling Center is free and confidential. There is no shame in asking for help. Getting help means you are taking responsibility and know what you need. Students mistakenly believe their problems “aren’t as bad as everyone else’s problems.” Students at Maria College utilize the counseling services for a variety of different challenges.
#3: Leave the option open, even if the student won’t commit to counseling. Let students know they can contact the center via email (firstname.lastname@example.org) at any time.
#4: Follow up with the student on how they are doing at a later date.