In the event that a student attempts suicide, makes a threat or gesture of suicide, harms or attempts to harm himself or herself or undergoes severe emotional distress (e.g. displays delusional thought content, reports hallucinations) that compromises the student’s or others’ safety:
- Report such behavior to the NSU Police Department (757-823-9000) immediately.
- The NSU Police Department will assess the situation and take appropriate action.
- The student will then be required to undergo an evaluation by a Counseling Center counselor at a location determined by the NSU Police Department.
In cases where a student’s safety or the safety of others is not an issue, any member of the NSU community can refer a student to the Counseling Center (757-823-8173) for counseling in one of three ways:
- If you are meeting with the student you can contact the Counseling Center during this meeting and note that there is a student who you would want to meet with a counselor. Please let us know if you would like the student to be seen the same day. Then have the student speak with the Counseling Center staff member, who will schedule the student to meet with a counselor.
- You may bring the student to the Center located in Room 312 Student Services Building, and have the student schedule an appointment in person.
- You may ask the student to contact the Counseling Center and schedule an appointment.
If you would like to know if the student has followed up with the referral, by law the student will have to sign an Authorization to Release Information form in order for the Counseling Center to be permitted to acknowledge the student’s attendance.
When to Refer a Student to the Counseling Center
Emergency and Non-Emergency Referrals
Emergency Referrals: Faculty and staff should immediately report any of the following behaviors to the NSU Police Department at 823-9000:
- Statements of wanting to hurt oneself
- Expressions of self-loathing/suicidal intent/aggression
- Written essays or verbal statements
- Problems testing reality
- Individual insists that he or she is behaving normally while other people perceive the behavior to be abnormal
- Talks about giving up important life goals and/or expressions of hopelessness
- Delusional beliefs
- Individual believes he/she has magical powers or that they are someone famous or important
- Individual believes he/she has an intimate relationship with someone who is just an acquaintance
- Belief that he/she is being followed, watched, or judged without objective proof
- Seeing objects/people, or hearing sounds/voices that are not there
- The individual may appear to be looking at something or listening to a sound that is not there
- The individual may be having a continuous dialogue with self
- Bizarre and aberrant behavior
- Beyond what would be considered simply unusual or unconventional
- Actions and words that cause people around him or her to become fearful
- Engaging in reckless behaviors
- Racing thoughts and rapid speech (mania)
- Very fast, difficult to follow, pressured, or nonsensical speech (e.g., individual’s speech is incoherent or does not relate to topic that is being discussed).
- Excessive use of alcohol or other drugs
- Visible intoxication, or showing signs of withdrawal (i.e., sweating, vomiting, or muscle spasms)
- Excessive emotions, lack of emotions, or inappropriate emotions
Non Emergency Referrals: Other situations are of concern, but immediate action is not needed. Faculty and staff can intervene by discussing counseling options with the student and referring student to the Counseling Center located in Room 312, Student Services Building (823-8173).
- Student reports having interpersonal/relationship issues
- Student appears sad or tearful
- Student appears anxious or stressed
- Student reports difficulty adjusting to college
- Student discloses past trauma or physical/sexual assault
- Abrupt change in student’s presentation (i.e. dress or speech)
| ||After Hours|
| ||Call NSU Police Department at 823-9000 to gain access to the on-call counselor|