The information you share in any counseling session will be treated with the highest regard for confidentiality. This means that information will not be disclosed to any outside persons or agencies without your permission. The only time information can be disclosed without your consent is when it is necessary to protect you or someone else from imminent danger. Typically, in your first meeting with a counselor, you will be asked to decide if there is anyone that you would like us to share information with and how much or what type of information is to be shared. Although that may sound pretty simple, the decision can be more complicated than you think.
Because this is such a small campus, it is not unusual for faculty, staff or other students to be concerned for you or somehow involved with your problem. Counselors can also help you at times by acting as an advocate or liaison with your professors or certain campus offices. In cases where a student has violated a school policy and has been mandated to meet with one of the counselors as part of their sanction, they may want the counselor to share only that information which is necessary to indicate compliance. Many students decide it is easier to trust that their counselor has their best interests at heart and release them to exercise clinical judgment in deciding which information to share.
The important thing to realize is that YOU will have control in the decision. In deciding how much information to share outside of the professional helping relationship, the default setting for counselors is NONE. So, even if we believe that sharing what you have told us with another person will be in your best interest, we will ask for your consent before doing so.