How do I make an appointment for Let's Talk?
Let’s Talk is offered on a walk-in basis during regular business hours. Appointments are not scheduled in advance. Students wanting a Let’s Talk appointment are invited to come to the Counseling Center any time prior to 1 hour before closing to allow for adequate time to complete paperwork and meet with a clinician.
Main Academic Year: Mondays - Fridays, 10 am - 4 pm
What happens during a Let’s Talk meeting?
Students will complete brief paperwork before meeting with a Counseling Center clinician. These appointments are first-come, first-serve, so there may be a short wait if the Let’s Talk counselor is already meeting with a student. Meetings are typically brief, about 15-20 minutes. In the meeting, the student will discuss their current concerns, and the counselor will provide support and suggestions for resources and resolutions. Students may receive up to 2 Let’s Talk appointments per semester.
How is Let’s Talk different from an intake, an individual therapy session, or an Emergency appointment?
An intake appointment is an assessment appointment wherein a student and counselor meet to discuss the best course of action for ongoing support (e.g. individual therapy, group therapy, referral off-campus, referral to a different university office), given the student’s history and current concerns.
An individual therapy session is part of a series of formal, consistent, ongoing meetings with the same counselor, wherein the student and counselor continually work on achieving a particular set of goals.
An Emergency walk-in appointment is a one-time, solution-oriented consultation that provides students with immediate support for urgent matters such as suicidal ideation, trauma, a recent death, or self-harm.
Let’s Talk is an informal consultation that is solution-oriented for non-crisis matters. Unlike individual therapy, it is not ongoing support.
Is there a session limit for Let’s Talk appointments?
Students may receive up to 2 Let’s Talk appointments per semester.
Who should use Let’s Talk?
This service is open to all CUA students. Due to the brief, informal nature of Let’s Talk, this service is best for the following people and situations:
- Students who are not interested in ongoing therapy but would like the perspective and professional opinion of a trained clinician
- Students who are curious about ongoing therapy and want to see what it would be like to talk to counselor one or two times
- Students who have a specific problem and want to talk through it with a professional
- Students who are concerned about a friend and want to talk about it with a professional
What kinds of concerns are appropriate for a Let’s Talk appointment?
Let’s Talk appointments are useful for discussing general concerns or time-sensitive issues. Some common reasons for coming to Let’s Talk include:
- Break-up with romantic partner
- Difficulty adjusting to a new situation
- Concerned about a friend
- Stress or anxiety
- Feeling depressed
- Alcohol or substance use concerns
- Academic concern
- Family issues or concerns
- Religious/spiritual concern
- Wanting referral information
- Wanting other academic information (e.g. how to take an incomplete, how to register for DSS)
- Wanting to talk about some other non-crisis/non-emergency concern
- Needing to make an important decision very soon
- Learning if ongoing therapy might be helpful to address concerns
As Let’s Talk appointments are intended to be informal consultations, they are not appropriate for addressing mental health crises or emergencies, such as suicidal ideation, self-harm, or recent assault. Students wanting immediate support for a mental health crisis should instead utilize an Emergency walk-in appointment.
What if my problem is complicated and needs more ongoing support?
Let’s Talk might be able to help you figure out what the next best step is. If your Let’s Talk counselor recommends that you consider ongoing therapy to better address your concerns, your next step would be to pursue referrals that your counselor gives you or, if recommended, schedule an intake appointment to start the process of receiving ongoing, consistent services at the Counseling Center. If you already know from the outset that you want ongoing services, Let’s Talk is an unnecessary step, and you should directly schedule an intake appointment.
When I called the Counseling Center to schedule an intake appointment, I was told that there is currently a waitlist for individual therapy. Can I use Let’s Talk while I’m on the waitlist?
Yes, as long as you understand that Let’s Talk is not a therapy substitute. If you are interested in ongoing individual therapy support, you should still attend your intake appointment so that you can get connected as soon as an individual therapy spot opens up. If you want to use a Let’s Talk consultation to brainstorm solutions for immediate concerns while you are waiting for an individual therapy assignment, that is okay.
My intake counselor or individual therapist recommended a referral to an off-campus therapist. Can I use Let’s Talk instead?
Since Let’s Talk is not a substitute for individual therapy, it would not be a good idea to disregard the professional recommendation for off-campus services. Let’s Talk does not offer regular, ongoing appointments to students.
Why do I have to do paperwork if Let’s Talk is an informal consultation?
The abbreviated version of paperwork that students complete for a Let’s Talk appointment helps your counselor obtain vital information about symptoms and safety risks that then allows them to enter the appointment with an idea of appropriate recommendations. The consent paperwork is required for all students, as it explains important legal and ethical considerations associated with Counseling Center services.
Individuals or groups who would like to reserve a lounge space within the residence halls for a private function should contact their respective residence hall office. Requests for reservations should be received 48 hours in advance of the event. Priority will be given to residents of the hall in which the lounge is located.
I have an individual therapist at the Counseling Center, and I would like to see him/her before my next scheduled appointment. Can I use Let’s Talk?
It’s best to contact your therapist either directly or through the front desk to see if an earlier appointment is available. Remember that for crisis situations, Emergency walk-in appointments are an appropriate option.
I have an individual therapist at the Counseling Center, but I don’t like how therapy is going. Can I use Let’s Talk instead?
It is important to talk to your therapist about your experience and have an honest conversation about your expectations and goals. While this can feel challenging for some students, this kind of communication can help refocus therapy and address your concerns in a direct way. Remember that Let’s Talk is not a therapy substitute, and you will not be able to use Let’s Talk to receive the kind of consistent, ongoing support that therapy provides.