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Faculty and staff are often the first to identify and respond to students who struggle with a wide range of mental health issues during the course of their academic experience. CAPS recognizes a faculty or staff member’s role as crucial with the potential to positively influence student’s attitudes about mental health care. We know the stigma about accessing mental health services cause some students to suffer needlessly.

Students may share very personal information and confide in you, both through your contact with them personally in the office or classroom, and through their academic work. You may find yourself become concerned about a student’s mental health or well-being. We want you to know that there are services and resources available to address the needs of students.

  • We invite you to partner with us to identify students at risk, reach out to them, or report your concerns through the ICare reporting process.
  • Any student having an urgent mental health need or experiencing a psychological crisis can contact CAPS (607-274-3177) for immediate support. Our daytime emergency hours are 1:30 pm– 3:30 pm, Monday through Friday. If an opportunity arises where we can be of assistance to you (e.g., concern about a student’s welfare or concerns affecting the mental health of the campus community) please feel free to call CAPS to consult.
  • If you feel a student is at immediate risk of harm, please do not hesitate to contact Campus Safety at #607-274-3333.
  • We also offer printable resource cards and a statement of mental health support to include in your syllabus.

Syllabus Insert for Faculty

In an effort to prevent potential negative outcome of students in distress, the following statement was generated as a guide for faculty to consider guiding discussions about faculty response to mental health crisis or for including in their syllabus in the future:

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Syllabus Insert:

Diminished mental health, including significant stress, mood changes, excessive worry, or problems with eating and/or sleeping can interfere with optimal academic performance. The source of symptoms might be related to your course work; if so, please speak with me. However, problems with relationships, family worries, loss, or a personal struggle or crisis can also contribute to decreased academic performance.

Ithaca College provides no-additional-cost mental health services through the Center for Counseling and Psychiatric Services (CAPS) to help you manage personal challenges that threaten your personal or academic well-being.

In the event I suspect you need additional support, expect that I will express to you my concerns and the reasons for them. It is not my intent to know the details of what might be troubling you, but simply to let you know I am concerned and that help (e.g., CAPS, Office of Case Management/ICare team, Health Center, Office of Religious and Spiritual Life, etc.), if needed, is available.

Remember, getting help is a smart and courageous thing to do -- for yourself and for your loved ones.

Imagine the spontaneous dialogue that ensues following the open-ended question: “what keeps people from seeking counseling when its benefits have been proven?” or, “what are some of the things you‘ve heard from others that reinforce the stigma about accessing mental health care?”

Reducing the stigma about accessing mental health care can lead to a culture on the IC campus where students seek professional help when it is needed. We invite you to work with us toward reducing the stigma about accessing mental health care so that students are not afraid to seek professional help by sharing the above statement with your class about mental health care.

Sincerely, 
All of us at IC Counseling and Psychiatric Services