What is counseling?
Counseling provides an opportunity for individuals to learn to make better decisions, improve personal skills, develop increased confidence, overcome blocks to personal effectiveness, and acquire a keener awareness and appreciation of their needs and the needs of others. Counseling will involve the student exploring and expressing feelings, examining beliefs and ways of thinking about the world, reflecting on patterns of behavior, and working toward making healthy changes.
Your first appointment
Your first visit will include a brief period of time discussing your present concerns. This session will help both you and the counselor decide how the Counseling Center services can best help you. These services may consist of individual or group counseling at the Counseling Center or possibly a referral to another office on campus or an off-campus service that may be more appropriate to your needs.
If it is mutually decided that additional individual sessions at the Counseling Center are needed, an appointment will be set for this. You and your counselor will determine the frequency and length of your counseling sessions. During an early visit with your counselor, you will work on establishing goals for counseling.
Because of the large number of students requesting counseling, the Wayne State College Counseling Center provides short-term counseling, which means that counselors recognize the limited time available to students and attempt to help them remain effective members of the Wayne State College community.
Depending on when you request counseling and what the current demand for counseling is at the Center, you may have to wait a few days to see a counselor. We recognize that coming to counseling often takes courage and resolve, and waiting can be frustrating when you are doing something important. Please know that the Counseling Center is doing its best to accommodate as many people as possible with a minimal wait.
Cancellations and no-shows
Personal commitment to counseling is crucial for success. We encourage you to keep all appointments scheduled with your counselor. If you must miss a session due to illness or an emergency, please call the Counseling Center at 402-375-7321 to cancel the appointment as far in advance as possible.
If you “no-show” for a session, please call the Counseling Center to re-schedule as soon as you become aware that you have missed your appointment. If you miss three or more sessions in a semester, you will need to speak with your counselor regarding ongoing regularly scheduled appointments.
Confidentiality and records
Counseling often involves sharing sensitive, personal, and private information between a student and their counselor. Recognizing this, laws and ethical guidelines require that all interactions with the Counseling Center, including content of your sessions, your records, scheduling of or attendance at appointments, and progress in counseling are confidential. No record of counseling is contained in any academic, educational, or job placement file.
Exceptions to confidentiality
For the vast majority of students, no exceptions to confidentiality are made. However, there are some exceptions to confidentiality which you should know about before you begin counseling:
- The counseling staff at the Counseling Center operates as a team within the college. Therefore, from time to time, your counselor may consult with other counseling staff members or receive supervision from a clinical supervisor. Additionally, Counseling Center staff may consult with the Dean of Students or Vice President of Student Affairs.
- You may request, in writing, that the Counseling Center release information about your counseling to professional persons you designate.
- If there is evidence that an individual poses a clear and imminent danger of harm to self and/or others, a counselor is legally required to report this information to the proper authorities. Appropriate medical or law enforcement personnel will be notified to ensure the safety of the student and the community. Information about a student may be released to the Behavioral Intervention Team when appropriate for evaluation of safety and well-being.
- Counselors are required to report physical and sexual abuse of minors or the elderly to the State Department of Social Services.
- A court-ordered subpoena can require the Counseling Center to release information contained in records or require a counselor to testify in a court hearing.
The WSC Counseling Center will use a variety of ways to communicate with you. We may telephone, text, and use the WSC email system. If you are experiencing a mental health emergency, please call or visit the Counseling Center during regular business hours. When the Counseling Center is closed, please contact campus security and they will connect you to a counselor.