Health Services

Let’s Talk: FAQ’s

Q. What is “Let’s Talk?”

A. “Let’s Talk” is a program that provides easy access to informal confidential consultations with a counselor from Psychological Counseling Services. The counselor holds walk-in hours in Paresky on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday afternoons from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. No appointment is necessary.

Q. What happens at a visit to “Let’s Talk”?

A. Appointments are first-come, first-served. Usually there is not much of a wait. The counselor will listen closely to your concerns and provide support, perspective, and suggestions for resources.

Q. How is “Let’s Talk” different from meeting with Psychological Counseling Services counselors in the Health Center?

A. At the Health Center counselors in Psychological Counseling Services provide ongoing counseling, which usually consists of weekly or bi-weekly 40 minute appointments, made in advance. “Let’s Talk” is not formal counseling: it is a drop-in service where students can have an informal consultation with a counselor from time to time, conveniently located in the center of campus at Paresky.

Q. Who should visit “Let’s Talk”?

A. This service is open to all Williams students and is the best fit for the following people:
1. students who are not sure about counseling and wonder what it’s like to talk
with a counselor;
2. students who are not interested in ongoing counseling but would like the
perspective of a counselor;
3. students who have a concern about a friend and want some thoughts about what
to do.

Q. I think I have a problem that would benefit from counseling, but I don’t know anything about counseling. Would going to “Let’s Talk” help me figure out what to do?

A. Absolutely. The counselor will talk through your issue with you and help you determine the best way to get help.

Q. I’m reading this right now and trying to figure out where to go to get help because I’m in an immediate crisis. Can I go to “Let’s Talk”?

A. If you’re in an immediate crisis, it’s best to contact the on-call counselor by calling the Health Center during Health Center hours at x2206 or x2353 and by calling Campus Safety at x4444 when the Health Center is closed. The “Let’s Talk” drop-in service is not a crisis intervention service.

Q. I’m currently seeing a counselor at Psychological Counseling in the Health Center, and I would like to talk to someone sooner than my next appointment. Can I go to “Let’s Talk”?

A. If your next appointment is not soon enough, it’s best to contact your counselor or call the administrative assistant, x2353, to see if your counselor can see you sooner.

Q. I’m currently seeing a counselor at Psych. Services, and I’m not happy with how things are going. Can I go to “Let’s Talk” instead?

A. The best thing to do in this situation is to talk directly with your counselor. Counselors are eager to get your feedback, positive or negative. Oftentimes an open conversation about your concerns helps smooth out any wrinkles. If, after talking with your counselor, you prefer to transfer to someone else, just ask your counselor directly, either in person or by contacting the administrative assistant at x2353.

Q. What else do I need to know?

A. Although “Let’s Talk” counselors are professionals, “Let’s Talk” is not a substitute for psychotherapy or formal counseling and does not constitute mental health treatment. “Let’s Talk” counselors provide informal consultations to help students with specific problems and to introduce them to what it’s like to speak with a counselor. The “Let’s Talk” counselor can help you determine whether formal counseling in Psych. Services would be useful for you and, if appropriate, assist you in scheduling an appointment.

Q. “Let’s Talk” visits are confidential. Are there any limits to confidentiality?

A. Conversations with the “Let’s Talk” counselor are confidential, with a few very rare exceptions. Counselors may need to share information in an emergency when there is an immediate threat of harm to self or others. Counselors are required by law to report when a minor, elderly person, or someone otherwise incapacitated and unable to act on his/her own behalf is being abused. “Let’s Talk” counselors keep brief written notes of their contacts with students, and in the event that there is an emergency or a student is referred to Psych. Services, other Psychological Counseling staff counselors may see these notes. Finally, these notes can be released in the unlikely event of a court order. “Let’s Talk” visits are never noted on a student’s official college record.

We don’t want anything to be a barrier to students accessing help. If you have further questions about confidentiality, we encourage you to discuss them with the “Let’s Talk” counselor.

If you have any additional questions, please contact Margi Wood, “Let’s Talk”
Coordinator, at x2353.

The “Let’s Talk” program is modeled in part on the “Let’s Talk” program at Cornell
University. We are indebted to our colleagues there for the name and idea; some of
the material on their website has been duplicated here with permission.
Special thanks to Matt Boone, LICSW, Cornell’s “Let’s Talk” Coordinator, for sharing
his expertise and experience.