Responding to Student Emergencies

The University encourages and will support staff and faculty decisions to respond to students in distress. Students in distress often display behavior that may pose a threat to self or others. Such behavior may include:

  • Suicidal gestures, intentions, or attempts
  • Other behavior posing a threat to the student (e.g., drug abuse)
  • Threats or aggression directed toward others
  • Demonstrated inability to care for oneself

Campus resources for responding to mental health emergencies are:

For consultation with a mental health clinician, call Counseling and Mental Health Services (CMHS) at 486-4705. CMHS is open Monday through Friday, 8:30 to 4:30. During these times, you may also walk the student to CMHS, located in the Health Services Annex, behind the Student Health Service. A clinician is available to see the student immediately in a crisis.

They are on call for emergency consultation 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, when school is in session. Call 486-4705 for information about after hour coverage. A clinician will be contacted by beeper to consult with you or the student.

If the student requires immediate medical attention or hospitalization or is unmanageable (e.g., aggressive, hostile, refusing care), or if you feel directly threatened by a student or feel others are at risk, do not hesitate to call campus police at 911.

What You Can Do

  • Move the student to a quiet and secure place if possible.
  • Enlist the help of someone else so the student isn’t left alone and you aren’t left alone with the student.
  • Listen attentively and respond in a straightforward and considerate way.
  • When contacting a campus resource, have available as much information as possible, including your name; the student’s name and location; a description of the circumstances and the type of assistance needed; and an accurate description of the student.
  • Alert the Dean of Students Office at 486-3426 or CMHS at 486-4705 as soon as possible.