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Mentoring Manual

Providing advice or counseling on personal issues

Personal counseling often requires you to have access to a student's private information. Faculty and administrators should always be conscientious and careful about handling and discussing students’ private information.

For Mentors: Student counseling services at most universities have a very robust business. This speaks to the challenges of being a student. This can be a particularly intense time for personal and professional growth. The key for every student is to see the counseling service as a resource.

During a summer placement, initiating counseling for a long-term issue is not usually feasible. However, stress from the new placement, in particular with roommates, issues related to self-confidence, and romantic relationships, can be areas where counseling can be effective during the placement period.

Each institution has a different policy on the use of counseling services. If the university will not allow you to use the services, there are typically community services available. The university counseling service should be able to help you identify those services. Most of these services will accept health insurance payment and most health insurance policies cover some short-term counseling.

For Students:

Confidentiality: On a large campus, the Counseling Center offices are typically isolated and separated from your work or study area. So it is quite easy to go there without all your friends knowing your business. Further, the professionals are obligated to confidentiality. Unless you give permission, they cannot even acknowledge that they are seeing you, let alone tell anyone anything about your sessions.

Continuing current counseling: If you are currently in a counseling relationship, it may be important for you to see someone at your placement. This can be arranged, and it would be advisable to have your counselor at your home institution help you set this up. They can brief the counselor at your placement institution, of course only with your permission.


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