CAPS grapples with increase

Over the past decade, the rate of students using college counselling resources has increased across the United States, according to Seton Hall’s Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS).

According to Dr. Priti Shah, assistant director of CAPS, CAPS experienced a 68 percent increase in crises services in the past year. This statistic refers to students who needed assistance based upon varying psychological emergencies.

After the death of Seton Hall student Myles Mislavsky last September, Shah said David Romano, a member of the Active Mind’s Speaker’s Bureau spoke about his experience, suicide and treatment. Romano presented to over 115 men from Greek life.

Jill Cancela/Staff Photographer

“CAPS also continues to offer Campus Connect suicide prevention gatekeeper training for the university’s faculty, staff, and students. Campus Connect is an experientially based training aimed to increase participant’s knowledge about suicide statistics, risk and protective factors, warning signs, and referral resources,” Shah wrote in an email. “It also teaches participants how to use empathic listening and communication skills to ask individuals if they are thinking about suicide so that an appropriate intervention or referral can be made.”

Shah claimed that in the past year over 300 university staff, administration, faculty and students participated in Campus Connect training.

Rishi Shah, the president of the Student Government Association, said the student life department within the SGA has addressed concerns regarding CAPS. After the induction of the Presidential Cabinet, the SGA conducted a student-led review on concerns raised by the student body. Shah wrote the SGA is aware that the department is in the hiring process to replace a counselor, “which is expected to alleviate some of the backlog that they are currently experiencing.”

“It is the responsibility of Student Life to report these concerns back to CAPS,” Shah wrote in an email. “The Presidential Cabinet forwarded concerns to Student Life and CAPS Administrators and are now working on a program to combat stigma surrounding mental health. These events will take place in the near future.”

Thomas Schwartz can be reached at thomas.schwartz@student.shu.edu.

Author: Thomas Schwartz

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