Learn more about PNW’s Counseling Center and our services with these frequently asked questions.
The Counseling Center offers a range of counseling and psychological services to the university community. These services include personal counseling for students, couples counseling, group therapy, referral and advocacy and crisis or walk-in services.
The Counseling Center staff also provide outreach and psycho-educational programming, consultation to individuals and other units within the university, participation on university committees and referral to specialized mental health services off campus.
The exact number of sessions are decided by the counselor and the student. The average number of sessions for PNW students is six. The general number of individual sessions is 12 per academic year for currently enrolled students. We will work with those students who want or need longer-term support to provide a referral if necessary. Eligible students must be enrolled in the semester they are seeking counseling services for.
On the Hammond campus, our location is the Riley Center, Suite 104 (2250 173rd Street). On the Westville campus, our location is in the Technology (TECH) Building in Room 101.
If you are 18 years of age or older, your parents won’t be notified unless you sign a “Release of Information” form. If you are under 18, please ask your counselor about the changes to confidentiality. Additionally, a parent/guardian must be present for the first appointment to sign required forms allowing you to receive services.
Completing the intake inventories and any additional documents sent to you via your PNW email prior your appointment allows your counselor time to become familiar with your situation, prepare for your intake appointment and make recommendations for the most effective treatment options for you.
If you have a particular request, (e.g. for a specific therapist or for a specific clinical issue) please note this when you call to make your initial intake appointment. We cannot always fulfill your request.
Unless you have a specific accommodation, you will be scheduled with whichever counselor is available and matches your schedule.
Your appointment could be with a psychologist, licensed mental health counselor, psychology resident or an extern (someone who’s working towards their doctorate degree in psychology and is receiving supervision from a licensed psychologist).
If you don’t feel comfortable talking with that particular counselor and would like to schedule an appointment with a different counselor, please discuss your concerns with your current counselor.
There is no additional fees for counseling services at Purdue University Northwest.
PNW Counseling Center does not employ medical professionals qualified to prescribe psychotropic medications. During an intake or subsequent counseling sessions, medication treatment may be discussed as a treatment option. The Counseling Center staff can provide a referral for medication consultation or for longer-term medication management.
We provide individual, group and couples counseling to ALL currently enrolled PNW students, including both graduate and undergraduate students.
We do not see Purdue University Northwest alumni but can refer alumni to mental health services in the area. If you are an alumna/alumnus who would like a referral, please give us a call at 219-989-2366.
We are providing telehealth counseling via a HIPAA compliant platform. It is preferred that telehealth counseling be conducted via video in a safe, confidential and private place. If video is not available, please discuss conducting your counseling session via phone. The student must be physically located in Indiana during telehealth counseling appointments.
Yes. If you need counseling, you may call us at 219-989-2366 for a list of referrals in the community.
Yes, all students who are currently enrolled at PNW are eligible for counseling services at the PNW Counseling Center.
The Counseling Center staff does not directly ask about legal or immigration status. We recognize stressors related to DACA or undocumented status may contribute to why you are seeking counseling. For this reason, we encourage you to talk with your counselor about this if you are comfortable doing so.
Undocumented and DACA students may experience unique stressors including feelings of uncertainty and fears about the future. The Counseling Center staff is ready to support the emotional and mental wellness of our diverse student body.
To make an appointment, please call 219-989-2366. If it is an emergency please be sure to let us know when you make a phone call.
We do our best to meet with you as soon as possible and accommodate your schedule. Availability for the first appointment varies across the academic year. Most students are offered a first appointment within several days of your request. During high volume times, the Counseling Center may operate under a wait list, during which time a student is provided with outside mental health referrals to avail themselves to while waiting to be seen by a clinician at the PNW Counseling Center.
Students who come to the Counseling Center in acute need are provided immediate services depending on availability or are provided with appropriate referrals. When the PNW Counseling Center is not open, you can call 911, go to the nearest hospital Emergency Room, or call 9-8-8 (National Suicide Lifeline number).
When you make an appointment, you will be asked to complete five computerized inventories and any additional paperwork sent to you via your PNW email PRIOR to your first telehealth appointment. You will be given directions to set up your client portal where you can complete the inventories.
The purpose of the first appointment is to assess your concerns, develop a plan of how to address them. The session can also be used to begin to address any urgent issues. The counselor will answer any questions about the counseling process. The counselor will ask for information about yourself, family background, general health/self-care and important relationships in your life.
The Counseling Center adheres to professional ethical standards and all state and federal laws regarding confidentiality. There are some exceptions by law where confidentiality may need to be broken. These exceptions may be due to risk of harm to yourself or others, child abuse and neglect, abuse and neglect of endangered persons (i.e. elderly), or in compliance with a court ordered subpoena or petition. All other information is confidential unless you sign a written release of information.
No. We cannot release any information about you to a third party without your written consent except in the specific situations described above in the policy on confidentiality.
No. Counseling Center records are kept completely separate from academic records. In the event a student chooses to reveal they are a recipient of mental health services as a factor related to withdrawal from PNW, or re-instatement at PNW, this information may become part of a student’s academic record.
Yes. The Counseling Center provides assistance to students by connecting them with appropriate services when needed. This can help if you are looking for longer term counseling or are considering leaving or taking time off from the university. We can work with you to identify referrals that include focus of concern, your insurance or sliding scale providers.