Student Wellbeing counsellors can deliver information sessions to staff about:
- supporting students in distress (reference guide provided below)
- the role of the Counselling Service
Counsellors can also be contacted through Student Wellbeing on extension 1226 to discuss concerns about individual students or student-related issues.
Student Wellbeing counsellors do not provide counselling services for University staff. USC staff experiencing difficulties should discuss their situation with their supervisor or Human Resources.
Staff and their families can access the Employee Assistance Program for a range of professional counselling services.
Counselling services are available within the local community and staff with private health care cover may be eligible to claim these services. Alternatively, staff may be eligible for counselling from a private psychologist under the federal government’s Better Access to Mental Health Care Initiative. A Medicare rebate is available to help cover the costs of these consultations.
University staff, parents and other students may be the first to notice when a student is not coping. If you recognise that a student is having difficulty and you respond with interest and concern you can play a vital role in helping them access appropriate assistance.
Students may become distressed for any number of reasons including:
- poor physical health
- psychological issues (including anxiety and depression)
- relationship problems
- family pressures
- home sickness
- transition to university
- competing priorities
- substance abuse
- lack or loss of direction
- heavy academic workload
Student Wellbeing provides a free and confidential counselling service for USC students, staffed by registered psychologists and social workers with extensive experience in student counselling.
What action should you take?
Contact USC Security on extension 1122 (all hours) if you consider the situation is urgent, and are concerned that:
- there is an immediate risk of suicide or self harm; or
- there is a risk the student may harm others
The student is distressed, but not likely to cause harm to self or others
If the student will accept help, call Student Wellbeing ext.1226 (ensure you use language such as "this is an urgent matter relating to a student in distress"), or escort them to the Student Wellbeing client services desk, ground floor, building E.
If the student will not accept help, encourage the student to seek help from Student Wellbeing, their doctor, a mental health professional or family member.
The student is experiencing problems or not coping in an area of their life
Indicators that a student is experience problems or difficulties could include:
- overly nervous or teary
- poor appearance or personal hygiene
- noticeable weight gain/loss
- procrastination, worsening academic performance, repeated requests for extensions
Encourage the student to make an appointment to see a counsellor at Student Wellbeing. If appropriate, let them make the appointment from your office.