Make An Appointment
To schedule an appointment or to find out more about our services, please contact our office at 716.286.8536. Counseling Services office hours are Monday-Friday, 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Summer hours are Monday-Thursday, 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m., and Friday, 8:30 a.m.-12 p.m.
You may also make an appointment in person at our office, which is located on the lower level of Seton Hall.
Please note that we do not maintain 24-hour access to email accounts. If you are experiencing a crisis afterhours, please dial 911 or contact Niagara University Campus Safety at 716.286.8111. Additionally, Niagara County Crisis Services can be reached at 716.285.3515 and Erie County Crisis Services can be reached at 716.834.3131. Crisis Services are available 24/7.
What Counseling Is
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Counseling is simply a series of conversations between a student and a counselor focused on helping that student to identify the change that they would like to see in their life, recognize the things that may be holding them back and the potential ways in which they can go about making change happen. Appointments usually last between 45-50 minutes and the total number of sessions will be determined by the student and the counselor, based on the student’s individual need.
What Counseling Is NOT
"Advice is what we ask for when we already know the answer but wish we didn't." (Erica Jong)
In the spirit of the quote above and in regard to one of the most sacred principles of counseling, we do not give advice. Counseling is not a place to come to be told “what to do.” Except in cases where safety concerns are present, it is very unlikely that a counselor will tell a student how they “should” act in a particular situation. Instead, counselors help students to see and fully evaluate the options available to them in terms of the student’s own values, goals and circumstances.
The First Visit
Students will be asked to come a little early for their first appointment to complete some paperwork. This will include an explanation of the confidentiality policy at Counseling Services and a brief background questionnaire. Upon completion of the forms, a counselor will meet with the student to talk about his/her concerns and to develop an appropriate plan for treatment. Often, students will be asked to come to counseling every week for awhile in order to help the student develop a level of comfort with the counselor.
Types of Concerns Addressed in Counseling
Counseling Services would like students to consider counseling as an opportunity to explore and share whatever is important to them at this time. It is an open time to talk about any situation, question, or difficulty that may be occurring in a student’s life.
Here is a partial list of concerns that students have brought to counseling
- Relationship problems
- Body-image/Eating concerns
- Stress management difficulties
- Thoughts of suicide
- Roommate conflicts
- Sexuality issues
- Self-esteem concerns
- Difficulty making personal choices/changes
- Test anxiety
- Sleep problems
- Physical or Sexual abuse/assault history
- Death of a loved one
- Self-harming behaviors
Client and Therapist Roles
It has been our experience that the more committed you are to actively participate in the counseling process, the more satisfied you will be with the results of counseling. Also, the more invested you are in your own growth, the more quickly you will see these desired changes occur.
Some Suggested Guidelines for Your Role as a Client
- To enter counseling with an idea of what the problem(s) is/are and how you would like your life to be different.
- To talk about your concerns honestly and openly.
- To follow through on any tasks you and your counselor may establish as weekly goals.
- To be willing to experiment with new ways of thinking and behaving.
- To make a commitment to keep counseling appointments, but if you are unable to do so for some reason please call ahead and cancel.
Your Counselor’s Role
- To listen attentively and empathetically.
- To help you to understand yourself and your situation better.
- To be honest and open in his/her interactions with you.
- To be respectful and supportive.
- To help you to identify more effective ways of thinking and behaving.