Referring Other Students

College students often encounter a great deal of stress during the course of their academic experience. While most students cope successfully with the challenges of college life, an increasing number of students find the various pressures of these challenges unmanageable and unbearable. If you observe or have spoken to a student who is struggling in some capacity, you may want to make a referral to Counseling Services.

Some tips for reaching out to a student:

  • Listen. Don't rush to fix, advise, correct, or disagree
  • Empathize. Reflect on what you have heard and what it would be like to be in the student's situation
  • Normalize. Acknowledge and discuss the student's fears and concerns
  • Speak directly to the student in a straightforward fashion
  • Do not attempt to coerce or trick the student into seeking counseling
  • Point out that a situation does not have to reach crisis proportions for to benefit from counseling 
  • Remind students that Counseling Services is free and confidential
  • Be specific regarding the behaviors that raise concerns
  • The option must be left open for the student to accept or refuse counseling EXCEPT in emergencies (e.g. suicidal or homicidal intent)
  • Follow up with the student at a later date to indicate a continued interest, even if he or she did not accept the referral

If a student accepts the referral, he/she may contact Counseling Services by calling 312-369-8700 or by emailing the office at counselingservices@colum.edu.  The student can also simply stop by the office, 731 S Plymouth Ct, Suite 112.

Once a student is in contact with Counseling Services, an initial 15-minute phone consultation with a therapist will be scheduled. In most situations students will speak with a therapist within 24 hours, schedules permitting.

Based upon the initial phone consultation, a therapist will recommend one of the following appointment options to the student:

  • Speak with a therapist immediately
  • Make an intake appointment within 24-72 hours
  • Future intake appointment within a short time frame, based upon availability
  • Alternative resources off-campus
  • Counseling Services therapy group