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Mrs. Ragan Summers, M.S. Ed.
Director of Counseling &
Disability Services
Desk: 904.470.8231
After Hours: 904.415.7902
Fax: 904.470.8028


 The Edward Waters College Office of Counseling and Disability Services is confidential, safe and friendly atmosphere for students, faculty and staff. We provide a variety of ongoing services, support and assistance for personal, academic and developmental issues, which impact the overall learning environment of students. 

With an increase of mental health demands by college students across the world, we continue to promote healthy alternatives to combat mental illness and disabilities. We seek to increase the awareness and knowledge of topics relate to college students. 

Office Location:
CHOICES Center
1710 Pearce St.
Jacksonville, FL 32209

Office Hours:
M-F: 8:00AM – 5:00PM

Resources

Counseling Services

 MISSION 

To assist Edward Waters College students in achieving their personal, educational, and career goals. Counseling and Disability Services is an integral part of the College’s total learning environment. Counseling and Disability Services provides students with a safe environment where personal concerns can be openly explored and discussed with professional counselors. 

 GOALS AND OBJECTIVES 

  1. To promote student growth and development as well as the enhancement of self-awareness and understanding in achieving personal and academic growth.
    • To provide intervention through outreach and educational awareness programs. 
    • Seek collaborations with faculty and staff in order to increase student participation in programs, and workshops.
    • Provide consultation to facilitate programs and workshops of educational relevance.
  2. To assist in resolving emotional, social and developmental deficiencies related to academic progress.
    • Provide on-going individual and group counseling.
    • Provide stress management, sexual assault, domestic violence, and other pertinent workshops.
    • Provide consultation and reasonable accommodations in adherence to the American Disabilities Act.
  3. To develop an on-going relationship with community agencies for consultation and referral purposes when deem necessary.
    • Consult with mental health and disability service professionals regarding agency services, policies and procedures.
  4. To promote outreach and consultation to faculty and staff for those students who express emotional, personal and social, and academic deficiencies.
    • Provide faculty and staff with information pertaining to counseling and disability services.
    • Develop referral process and form for faculty and staff usage.

Counselors are required and must keep all information and records maintained by the College that is related to counseling services confidential. Because of confidentiality constraints, counselors cannot talk with you about a student you have referred without a written release from that student. Counselors are required to abide by College rules as well as by law to break confidentiality, if: 

  • Their client threatens to harm themselves or someone else; 
  • There is knowledge of sexual or physical abuse to a minor); and/or, 
  • There is a court order mandating that the office release records. 

**Please remember that because of confidentiality constraints, counselors cannot talk with you about a student without a written release from that student. 

Email Disclaimer:

We discourage people from contacting us via e-mail regarding personal problems. The nature of e-mail is such that we cannot guarantee the confidentiality of your correspondence, nor do we find e-mail communications as useful as in-depth, face-to-face contact. Moreover, we cannot guarantee that we will read e-mail right away or respond in a timely fashion. 

Students can be referred to Counseling and Disability Services for individual counseling. Individuals who are hostile, suicidal, and/or addicted to drugs and alcohol are immediately referred outside the Center. If it is an emergency and/or a student presents clear and imminent danger to self or others, please contact Campus Security and/or dial 911. 

Because of confidentiality constraints, counselors cannot talk with you about a student without a written release from that student. Also, please submit concerns within a 24 hour period, unless it is an emergency. 

Personal Counseling can help you to recognize what is upsetting you, clarify your goals, focus on your studies, and find ways of dealing with difficult situations. These can range from conflict with parents, death of a family member or friend, break-up of a relationship or feelings of stress, depression and/or anxiety. Brief individual or group counseling is available. 

Group Counseling supports small numbers of students experiencing similar concerns. 

Disability Accommodations provides equal opportunity to qualified disabled persons in accordance with the requirements of Americans with Disabilities Act. 

Outreach and Awareness workshops and class presentations on various topics relevant to students’ personal growth and mental health concerns are available by request. Please allow three (3) days in advance for workshop or presentation requests. 

Free information handouts/videos are available on various topics. A partial list of available topics include: 

  • AIDS 
  • Depression
  • Drugs and Alcohol
  • Domestic Violence/Dating Violence
  • Eating Disorders
  • Greif
  • Mental Illnesses
  • Types of Prescription Drugs
  • Sleep Problems
  • Stress Management
  • Suicide

 

DRUGS AND ALCOHOL 

Counseling and Disability Services align its programs with the college’s commitment to making good faith efforts to achieve a drug and alcohol free environment for its students. Referral services are available upon request. Please refer to the Edward Waters College Student Handbook for related policies and procedures. 

HIV/AIDS AND SEXUALLY TRANSMITTED INFECTIONS 

Testing is available and referrals are made to community service agencies when appropriate. 

SEXUAL ASSAULT/DOMESTIC VIOLENCE 

In accordance with the Title IX of the Education Amendment of 1972 and the Campus SaVE Act (SaVE) 2013, counseling and disability services align its programs with the college’s commitment to provide a conducive place of work and learning, free from discrimination and harassment. The Office of Counseling and Disability Services is designated as an office that guarantees confidentiality. For formal complaints, please contact our Title IX Coordinator. Please refer to the Edward Waters College Student Handbook for related policies and procedures. 

When deemed appropriate, the Director of Counseling and Disability Services may recommend that a student is seen outside of the college for a psychological assessment. Based upon the outcomes of the assessment, the Vice President of Student Success and Engagement may determine whether or not the student may continue matriculation at the college. 

  • Emergency intervention-students behavior represents imminent danger to self and/or others. 
  • Formal Complaint-students behavior interferes with or interrupts the overall learning environment of the campus community.
  • A consultation will be held with the student regarding a recommendation for a psychological evaluation/assessment.

The student is responsible for obtaining the psychological/assessment within three (3) days of notification. Community referrals will be determined by the Director. 

A release form must be signed by the student that will allow the college to receive results of the evaluation/assessment. Copies of the outcomes will be maintained in a locked file cabinet in Counseling and Disability Services. 

Assessment results must be received within 5 (five) business days. At that time, there will be a review of the documents. A decision will be made within 3 (three) days and the student will be notified in writing. 

PRIOR MENTAL HEALTH HISTORY 

All students are strongly encouraged to immediately inform and participate in an intake interview with Counseling and Disability Services if they are currently under the care of a mental health professional, have a history or current mental health diagnosis and/or currently taking any prescribed medications to treat a mental health diagnosis. Failure to abide by this policy may result in a temporary “mental health administrative leave”. 

MENTAL HEALTH ADMINISTRATIVE WITHDRAWAL 

A student suffering a mental health episode to the degree that his or her condition may pose a direct threat to the health or safety of the student or others and/or that, if not addressed, may be detrimental to the best interest of the College (i.e., the condition may impede the educational progress or well-being of other students), will be strongly recommended by the College for 

Counseling and Disability Services does not provide transportation. 

Injuries: EMS/ Dial 911
Suicide: EMS/ Dial 911
Alcohol/Drug Abuse: EMS/Dial 911
Psychiatric Assessment: As determined appropriate

D.E.N.S. Committee (Discussing Emergency Needs of Students) 

Mission 

The DENS Committee is a team of campus professionals who respond to reports of concern regarding the well-being of students in distress and/or crisis. 

How DENS Can Help? 

DENS seeks to proactively respond to concerns about any disruption to a safe and productive living and learning community. We reach out to students quickly and make sure they connect with the resources useful in their situation. We address issues including (but not limited to) situations of self-harm or threats to others, family difficulties, stress management, mental health concerns, addictions, and others as deemed necessary. 

Report a Concern, Violation, or Problem 

To report any concerns about the behavior or personal well-being of students to Counseling and Disability Services (CDS), please complete and submit a referral form within a 24 hour period, unless it is an emergency. If your concern is purely academic (excessive absences, poor performance) without any knowledge of personal well-being issues, please follow your department’s policy and procedure regarding academic issues. If a student discloses that he or she has a disability, please refer the student to Counseling and Disability Services. If you have questions or concerns, please contact us at 904.470.8231 or 904.415.7902. 

Report Sexual Misconduct 

Employees have a duty to report any incident of sexual misconduct, such as sexual harassment or assault to the Title IX Coordinator. See the Sexual Misconduct, Sexual Assault, and Sexual Harassment Policy. The Office of Counseling and Disability Services guarantees confidentiality. 

Immediate Action Required 

For immediate concerns related to persons making threats to harm themselves or others; that pose a significant threat to the college and/or its community; or for other emergency issues, 

please immediately dial 911 and/or Campus Security. Please remember that because of confidentiality constraints, information cannot be disclosed about a student without a written release from that student. Also, please submit concerns within a 24 hour period, unless it is an emergency. If you have questions or concerns, please contact us at 904.470.8231 or 904.415.7902. 

RELAXATION ROOM HOURS AND GUIDELINES 

The relaxation room hours are Monday-Friday from 10:00 a.m.to 5:00 p.m. and Wednesday 9:00 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. (closed during Chapel) and 2:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m. 

The relaxation guidelines are: 

  • Completion of a brief stress factor inventory prior to using the room. 
  • Sessions in the Relaxation Room are limited to 30 minute including 15 minutes in large recliner massage chair with soft lighting and soothing music.
  • Only two (2) persons in the room at a time, please be courteous.
  • No shoes so please wear socks.
  • No food or drinks.
  • No cellphones, disrespectful behavior, or loud noises in the area.
  • Leave the Relaxation Room in the same condition you found it.

Disability Services

Edward Waters College provides equal opportunity to qualified disabled persons in accordance with the requirements of Americans with Disabilities Act. Individuals should complete an application requesting accommodations, submit documentation from a licensed physician, psychologist, or psychiatrist (not older than three years) describing their disability, and upon approval, meet with a counselor for an intake interview. 

Accommodations are academic adaptations that do not compromise academic standards or the master of essential course elements, but provide students with disabilities an equal opportunity to succeed. A referral system for students with disabilities is in place through counseling and disability services. 

Who is Eligible for Disability Services?

Any enrolled EWC student with a limitation that substantially limits one or more major life activities, such as walking, learning, and performing manual tasks, is eligible for disability accommodations. Students requesting services and accommodations are encouraged to register by submitting an application and disability documentation provided by a licensed/certified professional. 

Where do students register for disability services or accommodations?

Counseling and Disability Services is the office responsible for determining eligibility and appropriate reasonable accommodations for EWC students with disabilities. We assist the college in fulfilling its legal responsibilities mandated by Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990. These laws require institutions to provide equal access and physical access to educational programs for qualified students with disabilities. The student is responsible for being a self-advocate and registering for accommodation with the Counseling and Disability Services. 

What is the process for a student to register for disability services?

A student is eligible for accommodations if he/she is a person with a disability (to include temporary disability), has identified themselves to the Counseling and Disability Services, and has presented disability documentation provided by a licensed/certified professional to the college as required by the Counseling and Disability Services based on documentation guidelines. 

Upon approval for accommodations, the student will be contacted for an intake interview. The student is responsible for delivery of letters to faculty/staff. A student can give written permission to have letters emailed to their instructors. 

NOTE: Accommodations are effective after the student submits appropriate and complete documentation in accordance with the Counseling and Disability Services’ documentation requirements, completes disability registration, and has presented and discussed the accommodation letter with the faculty/staff member. Accommodation letters should be provided as soon as possible to assure accommodations are being implemented. Accommodations are not retroactive. 

Counselors are required and must keep all information and records maintained by the College that is related to counseling services confidential. Because of confidentiality constraints, counselors cannot talk with you about a student you have referred without a written release from that student. Counselors are required to abide by College rules as well as by law to break confidentiality, if: 

  • Their client threatens to harm themselves or someone else; 
  • There is knowledge of sexual or physical abuse to a minor); and/or, 
  • There is a court order mandating that the office release records. 

**Please remember that because of confidentiality constraints, counselors cannot talk with you about a student without a written release from that student. 

Email Disclaimer:

We discourage people from contacting us via e-mail regarding personal problems. The nature of e-mail is such that we cannot guarantee the confidentiality of your correspondence, nor do we find e-mail communications as useful as in-depth, face-to-face contact. Moreover, we cannot guarantee that we will read e-mail right away or respond in a timely fashion.

The guidelines describe information to validate: (1) the existence and that the limitations imposed by it rises to the level of being disabling, (2) the impact on the individual’s educational performance and (3) the need for accommodations for students registering with the Counseling and Disability Services at Edward Waters College. Accommodations are provided based on the impact of the disorder, not only on the diagnosis of a condition. 

The intent of using documentation guidelines is not to exclude students from use of services, but to ensure that those with legitimate disabilities who have current functional limitations receive appropriate accommodations. 

If the documentation is incomplete or inadequate to determine the extent of the disability or reasonable accommodations, then Counseling and Disability Services may require additional documentation. A self-report may be required and completed to accompany documentation. 

The following is a list of documentation guidelines for various disability categories: 

  1. Documentation Guidelines for Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) 
  2. Documentation Guidelines for Learning Disabilities (LD)
  3. Documentation Guidelines for mobility or physical impairments, systemic or chronic illnesses, hearing or visual impairments, psychiatric disorders or other disabilities 

A student has a disability that qualifies under the Americans Disability Act (ADA) and requires accommodations; he/she should contact Counseling and Disability Service for information on appropriate policies and procedures. Disabilities covered by ADA may include learning, psychiatric, physical disabilities, or chronic health disorders. Students can contact the Counseling and Disability Service staff if they are not certain whether a medical condition/disability qualifies. 

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Textbook lending is an accommodation used to provide an alternative format of textbooks to assist students with disabilities. The textbook is property of Follett Bookstore and is being loaned to students for use in classes while enrolled at Edward Waters College. After the semester ends, all books need to be returned to Follett Bookstore during the college’s final exam week. However, if it is lost, stolen, or not returned to Follett Bookstore, the student will be billed 100% of the retail price. 

Counseling and Disability Services has established the following policy regarding Service Animals and Support Animals, to assist individuals with disabilities. Being mindful of health and safety concerns of the campus community, Edward Waters College generally limits the presence of privatelyowned animals on campus. However, the College will reasonably accommodate persons with disabilities who require the assistance of Service or Support Animals, as appropriate. The Director of Counseling and Disability Services, who oversees disability services, is responsible for implementing this policy and for guiding students with disabilities in documenting their specific request for a necessary accommodation. Each request will be evaluated on a casebycase basis, considering the needs of the individual and the concerns of the College community. The successful implementation of this policy requires the cooperation of all students, faculty, staff and visitors of the EWC community. Edward Waters College reserves the right to amend this policy as circumstances require. 

Any member of the College community may report an alleged violation of College policies, including, but not limited to a violation of the provisions set forth by the college. If a student is not satisfied with the accommodations provided, he/she may engage in the grievance process to resolve the situation. If you wish to file a grievance pertaining to disability or other services, please refer to the Edward Waters College Student Handbook for policies related to the above topic. 

Records are stored in locked files. No files should be left in office overnight. Full records are retained until 7 years after the last date of service delivery, and then destroyed.