Office of Student Development and Academic Counseling

tips

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Tips for Faculty & Staff

What do I do if a student approaches me to talk about a personal topic?
First, find a place to talk. Unless you are concerned for your own safety, we generally recommend talking in a private setting with few distractions and interruptions, such as your office. If you feel hesitant to be alone in a room with the particular student, find a colleague who can join the conversation, with the student’s permission. Or consider leaving the door slightly open and sitting closer to the door than the student. Do listen, validate and offer support while maintaining appropriate boundaries. Don’t feel the need to offer immediate solutions to complex problems. Refer the student to the Office of Student Development and Academic Support (OSDAC), if you feel that the student will benefit from our services.

What do I do with a verbally aggressive student?
If you are in the student’s presence, try to remain calm and deescalate the situation. Speak in a calm and soft tone of voice. Speak slowly. At times, it may be appropriate to ask the student to leave the classroom. If the student shows verbal aggression in an electronic message or on an online discussion board, find a way to communicate with the student in-person. It may be necessary to remove the student’s comment from the discussion board in a timely manner. After the situation has deescalated, in a private setting, inform the student of the inappropriate behavior that needs to change. Provide a specific timeline for making the change. Inform the student of the consequences if the changes are not made in time. Stick with the consequences. It may be helpful to present the student with a written explanation of the requirements and consequences. Refer the student to OSDAC.

What do I do with a threatening student?
A student who threatens to damage university property, or a student who threatens to hurt or kill others need to be intervened immediately. This will be considered an emergency. During regular business hours, please visit us in room 4N-51 or call us at (252)744-2500 and let us know that there is an emergency situation involved. Emergency situations after regular business hours need to be reported to campus police at (252) 744-5080. Student can also be escorted directly to the local hospital emergency service. You may find it helpful to know that the Real Crisis Center offers 24-hour free and confidential crisis intervention counseling at (252) 758-HELP (4357).

What do I do when I am faced with a physically aggressive student?
If a student becomes physically aggressive in your presence, the first step is to ensure your safety. Create space between yourself and the student. Call the campus police at (252) 744-5080. While waiting for the police to arrive, try to remain calm and deescalate the situation. Speak in a calm and soft tone of voice. Speak slowly. If you know the student’s name, use his/her name when talking to them. OSDAC counselor will be available to follow-up at a later date, after the situation has been handled by the campus police.

What do I do with a student who suggests suicide?
Do take the situation seriously, even if the student appears to be joking. Even though it may feel uncomfortable, the literature indicates that it is better to ask if the student is thinking of killing him or herself, than to avoid talking about it. Avoid making jokes about suicide. Avoid making judgmental statements. Do listen and offer support by connecting the student to additional resources. During regular business hours (Monday through Friday, 8 am to 5pm), please visit OSDAC in room 4N-51 or call us at (252)744-2500 and let us know that there is an emergency situation involved. Emergency situations after regular business hours need to be reported to campus police at (252) 744-5080. Student can also be escorted directly to the local hospital emergency service. You may find it helpful to know that the Real Crisis Center offers 24-hour free and confidential crisis intervention counseling at (252) 758-HELP (4357).
Office of Student Development and Academic Counseling
600 Moye Blvd | Greenville, NC 27834 USA
252-744-2500
© 2014 | Terms of Use | Last Updated: 2014-07-22
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