Sept. 15, 2014 | Volume XXII, Issue 5

What is a Resource Counselor?

Published: September 18th, 2006

Category: Students

So far this year I have had the pleasure of working with some of you and meeting students within the law school. For those of you who I have not met, I thought that I would take some time to explain the role of a resource counselor and a little bit about the counseling field. As a resource counselor, I am here to listen to any emotional, mental, or personal problems that you might be having. It is not unusual for students to feel stressed or anxious during the school year, and these are some examples of problems in which you might seek my assistance.

Many students have expressed concerns about seeking assistance from the resource counselor based on a fear that confidentiality will be breached. Services rendered by the resource counselor are not shared to any member of the staff unless permission has been given or an extreme circumstance arises (i.e., harm to self or others).

I encourage you to seek help for any situation that you are having difficulty managing, no matter how great or small. No instance of anxiety, depression, or like problems will be disclosed to anyone. These discussions will have no bearing on one’s ability to gain employment or insurance based on what is discussed within the law school or particularly with the resource counselor.

Mental health professionals practice in a variety of settings, including independent practice, community agencies, managed behavioral health care organizations, integrated delivery systems, hospitals, employee assistance programs, and substance abuse treatment centers. Mental health counselors provide a full range of services including crisis management, psychotherapy, alcoholism, and substance abuse treatment, in addition to many others.

However, counselors, such as a resource counselor, have no formal training in curriculum management, advising on school related issues, or career services. There is staff in place to assist you in these matters, namely the assistant deans and career services office.

Counseling professionals abide by a strict code of ethics and laws that regulate their practice. At any time, you have the right to access your records or refuse services. Additionally, the law states that, “Mental health counselors have a primary obligation to safeguard information about individuals obtained in the course of practice, teaching, or research.

“Personal information is communicated to others only with the person’s written consent or in those circumstances where there is clear and imminent danger to the client, to others or to society. Disclosure of counseling information is restricted to what is necessary, relevant and verifiable.” Therefore, by law, your rights as a client are protected.

I hope that this clarifies any misgivings of the work that is done with the resource counselor or any recommending staff. Please feel free to email me at noblesw@law.ufl.edu with any questions that you might have to set up an appointment. I look forward to meeting and talking with you soon.

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