The Counseling Center is dedicated to the enhancement of personal growth and is committed to the idea that an individual’s emotional/psychological, spiritual, intellectual and physical well-being combine to make life satisfying. Professional counselors assist in helping students understand their abilities and potential, help students through changing circumstances and the transition from one stage of life to the next, and help students grow in the midst of personal difficulty.
A university environment is exciting and stimulating. It can also be stressful. Balancing classes, tests, work, relationships, family and friends can place new demands on time and energy. At times, students may feel overwhelmed. Many students find it helpful to discuss personal concerns with a professional counselor who takes the time to listen and understand. Counselors also assist students in setting goals, overcoming barriers, assessing resources and planning fulfilling, productive lives. A major tenet of counseling services is that personal awareness is an essential and integral part of a rewarding life.
Counseling is a process of becoming more aware of choices and alternatives in order to address a variety of concerns. The interaction between counselor and student is a cooperative effort to meet personal, social, and educational goals leading to a greater sense of choice and a deeper sense of self-confidence.
Most students come for counseling when they find their usual ways of managing problems aren’t working. Others are interested in enriching their lives by learning more about themselves. Some reasons for seeking counseling might include:
- Feeling lonely and without friends
- Roommate problems
- Anxiety over studying or taking tests
- Out-of-control behavior
- Sense of depression
- Difficulties with family or other relationships
- Problems with eating and drinking
- Balancing work and school
- Feeling down about one’s self
- Lack of direction in personal goals
Depending on a student’s needs, he or she can meet with a professional counselor for one or two visits or throughout the semester. All appointments are free and confidential.
Short-term groups are an excellent means of addressing shared issues and concerns in a confidential setting. Successful groups that the Counseling Center has offered include:
- Relationships Group
- Women’s Issues Group
- Men’s Issues Group
- Children of Divorce Group
- Freshman Group
- Crisis Response Group
The Counseling Center is available to conduct workshops for students on a variety of topics. Some of our workshops include: Stress and relaxation
- Time management
- Improving communication style
- Assertiveness training
- Recognizing signs of emotional distress
- Managing anger
- Dealing with life transitions
- Acquaintance Rape Prevention
The Counseling Center’s Self-Help Library contains a wide selection of books, audiotapes, videos, and pamphlets on a variety of mental health topics including, anxiety and stress management, sexual abuse, relationships, grief, eating concerns, personal growth, and other important issues. These materials are available to assist students in solving specific problems as well as to promote personal growth and development. Students can borrow these materials free of charge.
- Online Self Help Resources
- Audio/Video Self Help Resources
- Self Help Books Available in the Counseling Center Library
If you are questioning whether a student might be a good candidate for receiving counseling, or if you need further information on making a counseling referral, please take a look at The Counseling Center Referral Guide for Faculty and Staff.
Confidentiality and trust are essential to the counseling process. Consequently, information shared during counseling and the identity of counseling clients will not be disclosed to anyone without the student’s express (usually written) consent.
Conditions requiring exceptions to confidentiality occur very infrequently, and they are discussed with prospective clients prior to beginning counseling.
The Counseling Center is located on the second floor of the Newman Center. We are open from 8:30 A.M. to 4:30 P.M. Monday through Friday. Students can arrange for an appointment by stopping by the Center or by calling the main number, 973-618-3307. Appointments can also be made online by clicking here.
NOTE: If you are experiencing suicidal thoughts or any other mental health crisis, please contact the Counseling Center’s main number (973-618-3307) IMMEDIATELY and indicate you are dealing with an URGENT situation. You can also schedule an URGENT appointment in person by visiting the Counseling Center on the 2nd floor of the Newman Center. If you are experiencing an emergency after hours, please contact 911.
The Counseling Staff
Robin Davenport, M.S., NCC, LPC
Director of Counseling Services
Sr. Deborah Lynch, O.P., M.S.
Suzanne Calgi, MSW, LCSW
Kathleen Prendergast, RN, APN, C
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner