Welcome to the Counseling Webpage!
Our work with students centers around the Jesuit philosophy of “cura personalis” or “care for the entire person." Counselors provide students with individual and group counseling services in an effort to promote the personal, educational, social and spiritual well being of each student. A counselor is assigned to each freshman class and stays with that class through graduation. In addition to the class counselor, during the second semester of junior year, students are also assigned a college counselor. Counselors meet with students throughout the year, though students may schedule an appointment with their class counselor at any time.
Counselors work in collaboration with teachers, faculty, administrators, parents and outside private counselors in an attempt to best serve the needs of each individual student. Gonzaga counselors also regularly consult with other private school counselors and private therapists to discuss best practices. Parents should feel free to contact their son’s individual counselor with any concerns they may have about their son, whether at school or at home.
The Counseling Department offers small, close-ended counseling groups on topics such as depression, separation and divorce, anxiety, grief and addiction. The purpose of these groups is to educate the group members and give them a safe space in which they can share their personal story, while also hearing from other students who have faced similar hardships. These groups are composed of students of all grade levels. Students who are interested in participating in one of these groups should notify their counselor.
While some of the Gonzaga counselors are trained in psychotherapy, we are not therapists in our role at Gonzaga. Rather, our role is to provide general, supportive counseling within the context of an academic environment. Consequently, at times it is necessary to refer students for more intensive psychotherapy or psychiatric services outside of Gonzaga. In such instances, the class counselor works closely with the student, his family and the identified therapist to ensure the student's well being and to provide a streamlined continuum of care.
As counselors, we are bound by the Code of Ethics of our individual professions to hold in confidence all that is disclosed during our sessions with students. Because we appreciate the importance of a supportive family system, however, we encourage our students to include their parents whenever possible.
There are legal exceptions to the general rule of confidentiality which require us to break confidentiality in the following situations:
- When we have reason to believe that there is a clear and imminent threat to a student harming himself or another person, we are required by law to disclose information or take other actions to protect those in danger. Protective actions may include contacting the police or seeking hospitalization for the student.
- When we have reason to believe that child abuse has occurred, the District of Columbia requires that it be reported to the Department of Social Services immediately. Child abuse includes neglect, abandonment, sexual exploitation and physical or mental injuries that result in impaired functioning.
- When a court issues a legitimate subpoena and determines that confidentiality is not privileged.
Throughout a student’s career at Gonzaga, his counselor will encourage him to carefully consider the profile of the Grad at Grad 2020. Gonzaga counselors will challenge each student to think critically, act morally, advocate for himself and take responsibility for his actions, while working to discover his potential in all aspects of his life.
Our hope is that the information contained in this site will be helpful. Please be sure to browse the various links available. Technology is a wonderful thing, but it can never take the place of personal contact. Visit with or contact your counselor to ensure that you are fully aware of upcoming events and activities. We are here for the students!