Faculty, staff and friends are in a unique position to identify graduate students who might be having academic or personal problems. Making a referral to the Graduate Life Office (GLO) is the first step in helping troubled students find the right resources before problems escalate.
What can GLO do to help?
In addition to referring students to us directly, you can arrange consultations with us about your concerns. The GLO staff will provide advice to faculty and staff by assessing the seriousness and urgency of a situation, identifying appropriate campus resources and giving advice about how to talk with a student. They can intervene directly with a student and they can perform “welfare checks” at the student’s home whether it’s on or off campus. If necessary, GLO staff will convene a case management team to oversee a student’s progress in staying on track to resolve issues and problems.
If you are concerned about a student’s welfare, remember:
- Trust your instincts: if you’re concerned there might be a problem, you’re probably right.
- Explore options early and consult with others as soon as you have questions.
- Call for consultation and ask for help from staff in the Graduate Life Office.
Early Warning Signs
Pay attention to changes in students’ participation and performance. Any one of these warning signs is worth responding to:
- Decline in quality of academic work and performance
- Frequent absences from lab, office, or classes
- Withdrawal from school/departmental activities
- Mood changes
- Unusual or troubling behavior, such as angry outbursts, inappropriately dark humor, vague threats to harm self or others
- Changes in appearance
- Failure to respond to repeated attempts to communicate
- Concerns expressed by other students