Welcome to the website for Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) at Western Carolina University. CAPS is one of many departments at Western Carolina University that is committed to supporting your student’s personal, social and intellectual development in a diverse community and to enable them to develop as well-rounded and healthy individuals. This page is intended to provide you with information about our services and the ways in which we can be helpful to you and to your Western student.
Being one of the most influential adults in a college student’s life tells us that you probably know more about him or her than anyone else. It is likely that you’ll notice changes in mood or behavior that could be an indication of emotional or psychological distress sooner than others. Also, students tend to turn to their parents and other key supporters when making important decisions. We value your input and support; please feel free to contact us if you have any questions or concerns.
How can Counseling and Psychological Services help you?
We are available for consultation by phone or by appointment. We invite you to call if you have concerns about your college student. While this website provides a lot of information, sometimes it’s easier to have a one-on-one interaction to learn about our services and any other resources that could assist in your particular situation.
What about confidentiality?
Your student may have already told you about our services or other assistance being accessed. Whether or not this is the case, confidentiality laws prohibit us from sharing any information about a student’s counseling contacts without documented permission. Confidentiality is an important part of establishing trust and effective counseling relationships. However, confidentiality considerations do not prohibit us from discussing ways in which parents or other loved ones can be helpful in dealing with the issues that their Western student is confronting.
What can you do?
- Speak to him or her when you notice something unusual; don't ignore disturbing behavior.
- Communicate directly in a caring manner describing the behaviors that are cause for concern.
- Use "I" language that focuses on what you notice or what you feel.
- Avoid being critical or judgmental.
- Educate yourself about campus resources.
- Don't bring up concerns in the midst of an argument.
- Be willing to listen to what he or she has to say.
- Ask directly how you can best be of help.
- Encourage responsibility by helping him or her to problem solve and identify potential options.
- Recommend counseling as an objective, outside resource.
Resources and Activities for Parents, Family & Concerned Loved Ones
- Books for Parents
- Family Weekend
- Family Association
- Gambling Resource
- Getting Back on Track After the Emergency Room or Other Mental Health Crisis
- Health & Safety Concerns - Student Affairs
- Jackson County Family Resource Center
- Jed Foundation
- REACH of Jackson County
- Self-Injury / To Write Love On Her Arms
- Sexual Assault/Domestic Violence Resources for Jackson County
- Student Affairs Resources
- Student Emergency Fund Information
- Take Care of Yourself
- Transitional Issues
- Veteran Resources
- What A Difference A Friend Makes - For Supporters/Friends of Mental Illness