Campus Made Clear: Counseling Services

Photo by Gabrielle Crooks

This article is part of our Campus Made Clear series. You can read the whole series here.

Transylvania University employs three full-time counselors who provide talk therapy to students free of charge.

Coordinator of Counseling Services and Autonomously Certified Psychologist Kathy Susman says that it does take courage to seek counseling, but she encourages any student dealing with emotional distress to seek help.

Seeking help can come in many forms and needs to be encouraged as much as possible. So many don’t speak up about what is affecting them through fear of being judged, we are becoming more of an open society, so the more that speak up can help others in the process. Some may want to combine their counseling with other forms of treatment, this doesn’t have to be traditional, it can be alternative like herbal/natural remedies. One that has become a huge influence nowadays and is used by many people around the globe, is medical marijuana or a derivative of it like CBD. Many forms of it are used, from oils to edibles, it can be utilized in many ways. No matter the path you choose, it needs to be right for you and how you want to tackle your issues, always talk with a medical professional and see how you can bring yourself to a more positive outlook in life.

If you do decide on a counselor and want to know more about them, they are a person trained to give guidance on personal, social, or psychological problems. While both psychologists and counselors strive to help people live better lives, a psychologist has an advanced degree in psychology while the degree of a counselor can vary.

The counselors at Transylvania are considered generalists, meaning they can treat nearly all emotional distress. However, if a student needs long-term or more specialized attention, the counselors will refer the student to a qualified treatment provider in the community.

Transylvania counselors abide by a stern confidentiality policy. By law, confidentiality can only be broken if the wellbeing of all persons involved is at risk. These exceptions are reviewed with all students prior to treatment.

To protect the privacy of their services, counseling takes place in the Student Wellbeing office, where a number of other services are housed, including health promotion and education, information about interpersonal violence, and preparation for the student health fair. This way, if you are spotted in the center, no one can correctly assume counseling is the reason for the student being there. Susman maintains that it is and should be up to the student if and when to disclose their personal information.

While no counselors can prescribe medication, Transylvania has a nurse practitioner on staff who can.

To make an appointment, students can come into the office of Student Wellbeing in the Campus Center and indicate interest in counseling, email, or call 859-381-3682. Students are welcome to bring a friend or loved one to the center for joint counseling or support. The Counseling Office accepts walk-ins by students in crisis. It is open Monday to Friday from 9:00am to 5:00pm.

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I am sophomore premedical neuroscience major at Transylvania University. I have served as the sports editor of the Rambler since January of 2019. Outside of school, I enjoy snow skiing, watching movies, volunteering at the Catholic Action Center, and attending church at 1st Methodist.