Welcome to Counseling Services
Counseling Services is located on the ground floor of Gardiner Hall and is accessed through the Health Center. We are staffed by four full-time licensed clinical social workers from 8:00am – 4:30pm Monday through Friday. Appointments can be scheduled by completing an online request form through RamPulse. Once the request form is submitted, it will go directly to the Counseling Services director who will assign the student to a counseling team member. The assigned counselor will reach out to the student within two business days, to schedule an intake appointment.
- One member of the Counseling Services team is available during business hours on a daily basis to assist students with immediate mental health needs.
- Students in distress can walk in to the Health Center on their own, or may be accompanied by a faculty or staff member, or by a fellow student or family member.
- To reach a counselor by phone or alert Health Center staff during business hours that a student is in need of an urgent walk-in appointment, please call 304-876-5161.
- If you reach the Health Center voicemail, please leave a message.
- If the phone is busy, please try again, or report directly to the Health Center, or Counseling Services offices on the ground floor of Gardiner Hall between the hours of 8:00am – 4:30pm Monday through Friday.
For mental health emergencies (imminent risk of harm to self or others), please call 911.
For immediate, non-emergency mental health support outside of business hours, please call or text 988, or one of the hotlines below:
Available Counseling Services:
- Support students in overcoming specific personal, interpersonal, or educational problems.
- Provide opportunities for students to develop self-management, problem solving, and leadership skills.
- Motivate students to reduce harmful behavior and increase healthy, life-affirming behavior.
- Provide education, assessment, and consultative services in the areas of mental health and well-being.
Free confidential counseling is available on campus to all students. We focus primarily on short-term counseling. Referrals to outside agencies for more extensive or comprehensive services are also available; however, Shepherd University will not assume the cost for these outside services.
In case of a life-threatening emergency, call 911, or 9-911 from a campus phone. Always notify your resident assistant of an emergency if you live on campus.
Each illness has its own symptoms, but common signs of mental illness in adults and adolescents can include the following. If you are experiencing these symptoms, please seek mental health support.
- Excessive worrying or fear
- Feeling excessively sad or low
- Confused thinking or problems concentrating and learning
- Extreme mood changes, including uncontrollable “highs” or feelings of euphoria
- Prolonged or strong feelings of irritability or anger
- Avoiding friends and social activities
- Difficulties understanding or relating to other people
- Changes in sleeping habits or feeling tired and low energy
- Changes in eating habits such as increased hunger or lack of appetite
- Changes in sex drive
- Difficulty perceiving reality (delusions or hallucinations, in which a person experiences and senses things that don’t exist in objective reality)
- Inability to perceive changes in one’s own feelings, behavior or personality (”lack of insight” or anosognosia)
- Overuse of substances like alcohol or drugs
- Multiple physical ailments without obvious causes (such as headaches, stomach aches, vague and ongoing “aches and pains”)
- Thinking about suicide
- Inability to carry out daily activities or handle daily problems and stress
- An intense fear of weight gain or concern with appearance
If you are responding to a distressed student, use ALGEE from Mental Health First Aid:
- Assess for risk of suicide or harm: Ask direct questions and if the person is at risk for harm, seek professional help immediately. You can call 911, go to the nearest emergency room, or call a crisis line.
- Listen non-judgmentally: Use empathy and listen carefully with an open mind to what is being said.
- Give reassurance and information: Offer encouragement and emotional support, as well as practical steps or resources.
- Encourage appropriate professional help: Mental health needs treatment for better recovery outcomes, such as talk therapy, medication, family support, vocational support, and so on. Let them know there is assistance available.
- Encourage self-help and other strategies: Encourage the person to use self-help strategies or seek support from family, friends, and others. Peer support locally or online can also be a resource.
24 Hour Crisis Lines
- EastRidge Health Systems: 304-263-8954 or 855-807-1258
- Berkeley Health Center Emergency Psychiatric Services: 304-350-3338
- National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-TALK
- Trans Lifeline: 877-565-8860