Get Help for a StudentIs someone you know exhibiting signs of distress? When we notice that someone else may need help, it is important to offer support. Some things that you can do to help a student struggling with mental health:
- Reach out to the person. Let them know that you care about them and notice a change in them. Conversations about mental health or suicidal thoughts can be hard and often people worry about saying the wrong thing. Seize the Awkward is a great resource for family, friends, professors and loved ones to learn how to have these difficult conversations as well as understand the importance of them.
- Follow a guide. See our Guide to Communicating with Students in Distress for strategies and steps to follow when referring a student to counseling.
- Share a self screening tool. Encourage the concerned student to use our online mental health screening tool and follow its suggestions about next steps. These anonymous screenings cover areas of mental health, including depression, anxiety, academic distress, eating concerns, frustration level, family stress, and alcohol use.
- Learn more about mental health concerns and how to help. WVU students, faculty and staff have free access to Kognito Training, an online training program that teaches skills for communicating with others about mental health concerns.
- Help the student schedule an appointment. You can use our online scheduling tool or call the center.
- Call the Carruth Center about your concerns. You can talk with a counselor to get suggestions about how to help the person that you care about. Anyone may contact us regarding their concerns for a student. This may include faculty and staff, parents, RAs and other residence life staff. Speak to us if you are concerned about the well-being of our students.
- Emergency Situations. If someone is talking about suicide or hurting someone else, contact emergency services immediately to keep the concerned student safe.
What do we do when
a student is in crisis?
As faculty and staff members, you are often the first responders when our students are in distress. This video provides tips for managing a crisis as it applies to students but can be useful for any person on campus in a similar situation. Please note that if you see someone who is in imminent risk, call 911 immediately.
The Carruth Center provides consultation services to others who are concerned about the well-being of our students. We can listen to your concerns about a student and offer tips/advice about how to get the student some help. This may include faculty and staff, parents, RAs and other residence life staff. Anyone may contact us regarding their concerns for a student.
Parents, Guardians and Families
Parents/Guardians frequently have concerns about their students and want advice or information about available resources on campus. They often find it helpful to let our staff know their concerns, and receive suggestions about things to do or say (or not say!).
Our staff is available to speak with you during our business hours, or after hours for emergencies. However, due to confidentiality concerns, we cannot confirm or deny any student is being seen or discuss a student’s treatment without their written consent.
If you have not already visited the Mountaineer Parents Club website, we encourage you to do so. They staff a toll-free helpline (1-800-WVU-0096) designed to provide direct and immediate help for parents who have questions or concerns that do not appear to fall within the typical categories of frequently called WVU numbers.
Faculty and Staff
Faculty and staff may contact the Carruth Center if they encounter troubled students and are unsure how to help them. Simply call 304-293-4431 and ask to speak to a staff counselor. This number can also be used for after-hours emergencies.
We also work closely with the Office of Accessibility Services, should a faculty or staff member suspect a student has a learning or testing disability. Often, a referral from an instructor may tip the balance for a student who is hesitant about accepting our services.
If you are concerned about a student and it is not an immediate crisis, you can also
submit a referral to the CARE Team. If this is an emergent situation or
an immediate threat to self or others, please contact the
following 24/7 resources. Completing a CARE referral in lieu of emergency services
will delay a response.
If you are working with a student that is in a Crisis or Emergency Situation, please see our Emergency Resources.
Our center is oriented to the needs of students. If you are a faculty or staff member
who would like assistance for yourself, please contact the
WVU Faculty and Staff Assistance Program, a free and confidential problem-solving
resource, at 304-293-5590.