Counseling Services - For Faculty and Staff


The FSU campus community proactively promotes the success of our students. As a faculty or staff member, you have a unique position of having direct, ongoing contact with students. Students are more likely to seek initial assistance from faculty and staff members that they interact with. They are more likely to seek you out if they feel you are available, that you care and that you are willing to listen. It is important to understand and recognize potential warning signs to distress.


Faculty and staff in need of counseling services can take
advantage of the 
Employee Assistance Program that
provides free and confidential counseling and can be reached
24 hours a day, 7 days a week at 1-800-950-3434.



Utilize the Counseling Center as a Resource

We are available to help you with student concerns. Please do not hesitate to contact us for assistance or consultation. You may call our office (333-3661) to speak directly with a clinician or email us to discuss your concern. Use the "Don't Cancel That Class" request form to allow us to fill any class time that you may not be able to, so we can provide your students with a variety of presentations and interactive trainings.  



Identifying Students in Distress

The college years can be very stressful. In the contemporary climate of competition and pressure, some students adequately cope with these stresses, but others find that stress becomes unmanageable and interferes with learning. The following indicators may be useful in assessing whether to make a referral to the Counseling Center. 

- Student talks about thinking about or considering suicide
- Inconsistency with current work compared to previous work
- Infrequent class attendance with little or no work completed
- Dependency (a student who hangs around or makes excessive appointments)
- Noticeable lack of energy or frequently falling asleep in class
- Marked changes in personal hygiene

- Coming to class intoxicated
- Impaired speech and disjointed thoughts
Repeated requests for special consideration (e.g., deadline extensions)
- Threats to others
- Excessive weight gain or loss
- Behavior which regularly interferes with effective class management
- Frequent or high levels of irritable, unruly, abrasive, or aggressive behavior
- Unable to make decisions despite your repeated efforts to clarify or encourage
- Bizarre behavior that is obviously inappropriate for the situation 
- Students who appear overly nervous, tense or tearful


Guidelines for Interaction

Once you have identified a student who may be in distress, then you will need to interact with that student. Unresolved distress can interfere with a student's personal and academic life, and unresolved distress causes more daily interference the longer it goes unresolved. You have the potential to help a student in distress by expressing your concerns.

- Consult with your supervisor or a clinician in the Counseling Center.
- Speak with the student in private.
- Express your concerns. Be as specific as possible with your observations.
- Express the reasons for your concerns.
- Avoid criticizing or sounding judgmental. Be concerned.
- Work to understand the essence of the problem. Don't assume.
- Discuss the Counseling Center as a resource.
- Directly express your recommendation that they get help.

- If willing, offer to walk to student to the Counseling Center (316 Turley Center).
- If willing, offer to come with them to their appointment.

- Remember, if you feel uncomfortable with the situation or the student resists referral, contact us either by phone (304) 333-3661 or email to discuss your concerns. Utilize your supervisor.