Information for staff
Staff can seek counselling services for personal or work-related matters from the Employee Assistance Program (EAP). The EAP is an independent support service engaged by the University to assist employees to maintain good health and well-being and is available to all staff members of the University as well as their immediate families.
Most students come to counselling for the first time because a teacher has suggested it. So, teachers, lecturers and other staff play an essential role in providing the bridge to counselling.
When to refer a student to counselling
When someone talks to you about psychological issues and:
- you know you don't have the resources to deal with it - skill, time, etc.
- your gut feeling is "this is too much"
- you are feeling manipulated by the situation or uncomfortable
- you think the person could be suicidal
- it's not related to you, your role at work or the course work.
When someone seems to be having a difficult time, such as:
- struggling financially
- needing accommodation
- feeling stuck in a situation they can't seem to get out of by them-self, eg harassed
- an issue seriously affecting their day to day life - eg. anxiety or depression
- feeling overwhelmed by demands on them - eg. juggling school and home responsibilities
- trying to make an important decision
- having conflict with someone.
How to be an ACE referrer
A: Acknowledge the student's distress
- 'I hear your distress about what's happening at home.'
- 'That's a lot to deal with.'
C: Counselling information
- 'I am wondering if it might be helpful to talk this through with a counsellor here?'
- 'The University has a counselling service which is free and confidential.'
E: Encourage them to pursue counselling
- If the person seems open to hearing more about counselling: 'Most people who go to see them say that it has been helpful.'
- 'They can give you the time and expert attention that you deserve.'
- 'Would you like me to give them a call and see if they're around at the moment, or give you their number to call?'