Counseling Service

Crisis Response

In the event of emergency situations or traumatic events, Counseling Center staff are available to provide support and guidance to faculty, staff, and students.

Examples of emergencies that may require involvement of Counseling Center professional staff who are trained in crisis response include:

  • Deaths, including suicides or accidental fatalities
  • Homicides or other acts of violence, including mugging or robbery
  • Sexual assault or rape
  • Terrorist acts
  • Natural disasters
  • Fire or arson
  • Campus shooting or mass violence

Faculty and staff may contact the Counseling Center to consult with a therapist about options for responding in the hours or days that follow an emergency. Depending on the nature of the incident, individuals who are directly affected may be referred to individual counseling or the referral services at the Counseling Center.

In some situations, Counseling Center staff may be requested to be present when university staff or faculty share news of a traumatic event with students in a classroom or residence hall. In such cases, the therapists are available primarily to support any person who may have difficulty when receiving the news.

In other situations, the Counseling Center might recommend that a group intervention by Counseling Service therapists is appropriate. These are sometimes referred to as a group “debriefing” or “processing” session. Some of the benefits of these group interventions are the reduction of acute distress, increased group member cohesion, and the facilitation of resilience. In addition, the therapists who facilitate the group can identify participants in need of further support and assistance. Attendance at such interventions should occur on a voluntary basis. Counseling Center staff will collaborate with faculty and staff to make an informed decision as to which type of intervention would be most appropriate for affected individuals.

Requests for crisis response should be made through the Counseling Center-Resident Life dyad program or by calling the Counseling Center at (301) 314-7651.