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FAQ

Who is eligible for services?

All currently registered UMBC students (undergraduate and graduate) are eligible for an initial appointment. During that appointment, you and your counselor will determine the most appropriate services. This may include individual or group counseling at the Counseling Center, self-help resources, or referral to a community provider. There is no charge for services provided at the Counseling Center.


What about confidentiality? Will other people find out what I’m saying?

Counseling Center staff are legally and ethically required to keep the information clients share with us confidential. As a result, both your attendance and any information you share in counseling will not be revealed to anyone (family, faculty/staff, friends, etc.) outside of the Counseling Center unless you provide written permission to do so. The rare exceptions include a) when there is clear and imminent danger that someone’s life is at risk, b) in the case of apparent or suspected abuse of a child or dependent adult, or c) under enforceable court order.


How do I make an appointment?

You may call the Counseling Center (410-455-2472) or come in person to our office at the Student Development & Success Center. We will let you know of available times for an intake appointment. “Walk-in” intakes are available for urgent or emergency situations. It is helpful to arrive approximately 30 minutes prior to your first appointment in order to fill out intake paperwork.


What can I expect in counseling?

During your first appointment, you can expect to be asked some questions about your current situation and your counselor will listen closely as you describe your experiences. Sometimes, an initial appointment is extended across more than one session in order to get a better idea of what’s happening. Together, we will assess your needs and come up with an effective course of action. This may involve a variety of possibilities such as ongoing individual counseling, referral to a more appropriate counselor (at the Counseling Center or an outside provider), a medication consult, group counseling, or self-help resources.


Is there a charge for counseling services?

There is no charge for services provided at the Counseling Center.


What if I’m late or need to cancel?

Counseling is likely to be most beneficial when you attend sessions consistently. Also, it is important to be on time for scheduled appointments. If you need to cancel/reschedule or you realize you will be late for your appointment, please call the Counseling Center (410-455-2472) by 9 am the day of your appointment to let us know.


What if I think I need medication?

The Counseling Center has a psychiatrist on site part-time (16-20 hours/week) who can prescribe medications when appropriate. This service is provided for students actively engaged in ongoing counseling at the Counseling Center. If you and your Counseling Center counselor together believe medication may be an effective option, your counselor will make a referral and an appointment with the psychiatrist. The Counseling Center psychiatrist will evaluate your situation and determine if medication is appropriate. Alternatively, the Counseling Center referral coordinator may help you get connected to services in the community, utilizing your insurance provider, when appropriate.


How do I make a referral to someone else?

To recommend counseling services to a UMBC student, first determine the student’s willingness to go to a helping resource. Reassure the student that it is an act of strength to ask for help. Remind them that campus counseling services are free and confidential. Offer to help make the initial contact by calling or coming with the student to the Counseling Center.