What if my student calls in distress?
- Be supportive and open to the information
- Assist in problem solving, but try not to rush to the rescue.
Encourage him/her/them to visit the Counseling and Wellness Center (941-487-4254, Monday-Friday 8 AM- 5 PM).
If your student indicates that they are in immediate danger, contact the Campus Police at 941-487-4210.
Ways to address student concerns
Wait – and take a breath.
- Give yourself time to process what your student is telling you, and LISTEN
Think carefully about your response.
- A student may fear disappointing you.
- Be honest and direct.
- Show support and acceptance
Acknowledge their feelings.
- Reflect that you understand how a situation may be difficult for the student.
- This is not the time to talk about how it is difficult for you.
- Acknowledge your own feelings.
- Be honest about your feelings
Take some time.
- If your feelings are too strong to deal with right now, or if your student is too emotional, take time to think about what needs to be discussed and talk in a couple hours.
Keep your discussion as objective as possible.
- Try to listen more than talk at first. Don’t respond yet. Get the facts.
- Try to remain calm and thoughtful about the reality of the situation and options moving forward.
- If there are limits to what you will support, be clear about them.
- If you have expectations moving forward, spell them out.
Utilize your resources.
- Depending on the concern your student has there are several resources on campus which can assist them:
- Counseling Center
- Disability Services
- Advisor/Provost Office
- Library/Academic Resource Center