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Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is counseling?

Counseling is a confidential process that enables a person to grow in a way that s/he chooses. A counselor can be an additional resource, someone to just listen and provide extra support for you. Counseling Services will connect with, care for, and comfort students to enhance their success and well-being.

2. Who can attend? What are the costs? Where is it located?

Counseling is for currently enrolled students and is free. Counseling Services is located in the Kathleen Manley Building (aka Wellness Center).

3. How long will counseling take? When does it “end”?

The length of each session and number of sessions varies with each student: based on goals wants and needs. Generally, participation is voluntary and the student may stop counseling whenever he/she is ready.

4. What should I expect when I go to Counseling Services?

At your first contact with Counseling Services you will be asked to fill out a student information form and then schedule an appointment for an intake. When you arrive for your intake you can sit in any lobby area: front lobby where students seeing the nurse typically sit or Counseling Services lobby located by using the side door. Your counselor will greet you shortly and ask you to come to their office. The intake will include a description of program services, a discussion of the presenting issue(s), and a brief personal history of the student. After the intake you can expect to continue to meet with a counselor. The length of each session and number of sessions varies with each student and is based on their goals, wants, and needs.

5. What happens during the counseling session?

During the initial session, the counselor and student work towards identifying and establishing goals to the issues that are affecting the student. The following talk sessions allow for the student to process what s/he is experiencing, monitor his/her progress, and receive extra support.

6. Will counseling work for me?

There are many factors involved in what makes counseling successful. Some factors are: student readiness and the right “fit” between client and counselor (see question 10). No counselor can guarantee that counseling is going to be successful for anyone. However, it can be helpful to talk with a counselor about issues that are of concern to you and work on ways that will help you to feel better.

7. What issues do students and counselor work on?

The main focus will be working towards the students personal goals. Issues commonly seen in counseling are (but not limited to): stress, family problems, depression, anxiety, relationships, eating disorders, substance abuse, sexual assault, grief/loss, self-esteem, academic difficulties and suicidal ideation.

8. What about privacy?

Counseling sessions are confidential. Information about students is not released without the written permission of the student, including whether or not the student even walked into the office. Because of legal and ethical constraints, however, Counseling Services may release information without student approval if a life-threatening emergency exists, cases involving child/elder/persons with disability abuse or neglect, by subpoena or order of a judge, or as otherwise required by law.

9. Who provides the counseling?

Our clinical counselors are masters-level licensed clinical social workers. They are trained to provide individual, group, and couples counseling. Counseling Services may also utilize graduate program intern students who provide services under the supervision of a Clinical Supervisor and the Supervising Professor in the intern students' program of study.

10. Can I request a specific counselor?

A student may request a specific counselor by asking for a specific counselor by name; however, this may result in a delay in services. We recognize that not all students connect with a certain counselor and you need to let us know. It is very important to us that students feel comfortable.

11. How do I make an appointment?

To schedule an appointment a student can do any of the following: call (865)471-3350, email the counselors  at counselingservices@cn.eduor come by Counseling Services located in the Kathleen Manley Building next to Burnett residence hall. In the event one might suspect a potential life-threatening emergency students should call 911 and then 24/7 Department of public safety cell phone (865)548-9067. Hours of available appointments are Monday - Friday, 8:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m., with flexibility except during designated school holidays and/or school closings due to weather.

12. What other services does Counseling Services offer?

Aside from individual, couple and group counseling services, Counseling Services offers mental health screenings online, information and referrals to on- or off-campus resources, CLW’s, stress relief activities, teach classes, along with presentations/workshops.

As part of our campus suicide and violence prevention efforts, Counseling Services offers a QPR "Question, Persuade, and Refer" training for interested groups. Please contact us to schedule a time for the training.

14. I'm still not sure counseling is for me. Where can I get more information?

Many students are initially apprehensive about receiving counseling. Our counselors will be more than happy to answer any questions students may have about the counseling process or about counseling services. Please call 865-471-3350 and/or e-mail us at counselingservices@cn.edu

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