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In cases where an individual’s behavior poses an imminent danger to yourself or others, contact the University Police immediately at (412) 397-2424.
Talk to the student privately.
Create an atmosphere of openness and acceptance.
- Ask the student to speak with you away from their peers
Summarize what you see as the issue.
- Show the students that you are available to talk, and want to hear from them
- Communicate regularly with your students
- Make students feel appreciated and heard
- Encourage students
Express interest and concern.
- Ex. “I’ve noticed you’re missing a lot of classes.” instead of “Why are you missing so many classes?”
- Ex. “Do you mind me asking why you have had such difficulty handing in your papers on time?”
Be direct and specific.
- Students are more willing to receive help when someone shows concern about them than when they are forced to go.
- Tell the student the specific behaviors that concern you
- If you are wondering if a student is suicidal or wanting to hurt him/herself, it is best to just ask so you know the severity of the issue.
- According to the Suicide Prevention Policy, any RMU employee who becomes aware of a suicide threat or gesture, whether written, verbal, or behavioral, must contact the Counseling Center immediately.
- Please call (412) 397-5900, or escort the student to the lower level of Patrick Henry Center (former Career Center) during business hours (M-F, 9 AM-5 PM). After hours, please call the confidential emergency line at (412) 397-5925. Please note that this phone number is for faculty and staff only and is not to be given out to or used by students.
- If a student tells you their problem or issue, do not judge them, be supportive and listen