The Counseling Center's mission is to help students to maximize their potential through the problem solving process. The belief is that exploration and understanding of feelings, thoughts and behaviors encourages personal growth, enhances coping skills, and uses emotional energies creatively and positively. A primary goal is to provide services that help each individual grow and develop emotionally, inter-personally and intellectually. Sessions provide an opportunity to learn and practice skills for healthy living in a proactive way.
Counseling involves sharing sensitive, personal, and private information by clients with their counselor. Recognizing this, laws and ethical guidelines require that all interactions with the Counseling Center, including content of your sessions, your records, scheduling of or attendance at appointments, and progress in counseling are confidential. No record of counseling is contained in any academic, educational, or job placement file.
Exceptions to Confidentiality
For the vast majority of clients, no exceptions to confidentiality are made. However, there are some exceptions to confidentiality which you should know about before you begin counseling:
- You may request, in writing, that the Counseling Center release information about your counseling to persons you designate.
- If there is evidence that a student poses clear and imminent danger of harm to self and/or others, a counselor is legally required to report this information to the proper authorities. Appropriate medical or law enforcement personnel will be notified to ensure the safety of the student and the community.
- New York state law requires that anyone who learns of, or has strong suspicions of, abuse or neglect of any person under 18 years of age must report this information to the proper authorities.
- A court-ordered subpoena can require the Counseling Center to release information contained in records or require a counselor to testify in a court hearing.
If an emergency occurs during business hours, call the Counseling Center (655-7207) or Security (655-7271). Regular business hours are 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday when the College is in full session.
For emergencies in the evenings or on weekends, contact the Residence Life staff or Campus Security (x 7271). They will discuss with you the options for getting assistance, which may include paging the counselor on-call.
Faculty, Staff & Parents
Counselors are available during business hours to consult regarding a concern a third party might have about an individual. Strategies for helping the person and, if appropriate, getting the student in to see a counselor can be discussed. Counseling Center staff members do not contact students and ask them to come in or inquire about their mental health. It is our belief that counseling is most effective when it is voluntary, and students often perceive such calls or contacts as intrusive. If a situation exists in which a student is in imminent danger as a result of a psychological problem, appropriate law enforcement or emergency medical personnel will be contacted.