| WHAT CAN A
STUDENT EXPECT AT CAPS?
A student's initial interview with a CAPS professional staff member
is generally arranged by scheduling an appointment. You can assist
this process by offering the student the immediate use of your phone.
It may be helpful for you to know that CAPS basic services are free
of charge to full time students. Initial appointments are free to
all Penn State students.
Students can schedule an appointment by calling
or by visiting CAPS at:
501 Student Health Center
during office hours between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through
The receptionist will arrange for the student to meet with a
counselor as soon as possible. In non-crisis situations, this
may involve a wait of one to two weeks for a first appointment.
In more urgent or crisis situations, an immediate or same-day
intervention may be required.
For example, a crisis might include consideration of suicide,
experiencing a sexual assault or feeling overwhelmed and disoriented
from severe panic.
In order to arrange for a crisis intervention session, the student
should alert the CAPS receptionist to the crisis nature of the
situation. If you feel that a student might be reluctant to ask
for a crisis appointment, you can facilitate the process by making
this request for the student.
Prior to the first visit with the counselor, the student completes
forms eliciting background information. During the
initial interview, the counselor and student begin an assessment
of the student's needs and the ways in which CAPS or other services
might be able to help. Except in rare situations where disclosure
is legally mandated, all services at CAPS are confidential
NEXT: WHAT HAPPENS AFTER THE FIRST SESSION?