Assisting Students

See Something, Say Something, Do Something

University of Oregon faculty and staff are in a unique position to demonstrate compassion for UO students in distress. You may be the first person to see something distressing in a student. The university requests that you act with compassion when assisting students. Students exhibiting troubling behaviors in your presence are likely having difficulties in various settings. Trust your instincts and say something if a student leaves you feeling worried, alarmed, or threatened! Sometimes students cannot or will not ask for support. Do something! Your expression of concern may be a critical factor in saving a student’s academic career or even a life.

Emergency Crisis

Call 9-1-1 and you will be connected with appropriate service

When a student:

  • Is a victim of an attack or is in physical danger
  • Appears to pose imminent danger to the safety of themselves or others
  • Exhibits behavior that makes you feel unsafe

Non-emergency Concern

UO Counseling Services: 541-346-3227

During business hours you will reach the front desk receptionist, who can direct you to an appointment or service. Any time Counseling Services is closed, this phone number switches to an After-Hours Support and Crisis Line staffed by a mental health professional.

  • Debilitating anxiety and/or depression
  • Alcohol and/or drug abuse
  • Non-imminent suicidal and/or violent thoughts or behaviors
  • Possible psychosis or mania
  • Significant eating disorder

Student Conduct and Community Standards: 541-346-1140

  • Inappropriate behavior
  • Disruptive to a class, residence hall, or any other campus location

Student Care Team: 541-346-1138

  • Personal tragedy or significant event that may impact a student’s ability to stay in school
  • When multiple issues impede student success
  • Activities or events that have an impact on safety of the campus community

Sexual Harassment or Sexual Misconduct—First review your employee responsibilities. If you are a designated reporter, learn more about how to report at If you are a student-directed employee, please call the Title IX consult line at 541-346-1200 and an advocate will return your call within two business days. 

  • Sexual assault
  • Dating or domestic violence
  • Gender-based harassment or bullying
  • Stalking

Academic Difficulty—call Academic Advising 541-346-3211

  • Missing one or more classes within the first two weeks of the term
  • Low or no engagement in the classroom
  • Isolation from other students
  • Poor performance early in the term

If you are not sure please consult your supervisor, department chair, or associate dean.

Indicators Something May Be Wrong

Academic Indicators

  • Sudden decline in quality of work and grades
  • Repeated absences
  • Disturbing content in writing or presentations (e.g., violence, death)
  • You find yourself doing more personal rather than academic counseling during office hours
  • Classroom disruptions

Safety Risk Indicators

  • Unprovoked anger or hostility
  • Making implied or direct threats to harm self or others
  • Academic assignments dominated by themes of extreme hopelessness, rage, worthlessness, isolation, despair, or suicidal ideations/violent behaviors

Psychological Indicators

  • Self-disclosure of personal distress that could include family problems, financial difficulties, depression, grief, or thoughts of suicide
  • Excessive tearfulness, panic reactions, irritability, or unusual apathy
  • Verbal abuse (e.g., taunting, badgering, intimidation)
  • Significant and persistent mood change
  • Expressions of concern about the student by peers

Physical Indicators

  • Marked changes in physical appearance including deterioration in grooming, hygiene, or weight loss/gain
  • Excessive fatigue/sleep disturbance
  • Intoxication, hangovers, or smelling of alcohol
  • Disoriented or “out of it”

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) permits communication about a student of concern in connection with a health and safety emergency. Observations of a student’s conduct or statements made by a student are not FERPA protected. Such information should be shared with appropriate consideration for student privacy. The Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) does not prohibit the sharing of personal observations and knowledge about a student among campus officials when there is a legitimate concern related to campus safety.

Referring a Student

The Student Care Team was formed to address concerns about student behavior that may be disruptive to the integrity of the learning environment. The Student Care Team also functions as an interdisciplinary problem-solving group where multiple departments and personnel are working collaboratively to support students. The Student Care Team provides presentations and workshops on dealing with disruptive or distressed students and provides guidance on the encouragement of positive community standards.

When to Refer

  • If your efforts to manage a significant classroom behavioral issue have not resolved the problem
  • If you are concerned about the welfare of a student, yourself, or other students
  • If a student asks for help in dealing with personal issues that are outside your role as a faculty or staff member
  • If you have referred the student for assistance in the past and there seems to be no improvement, or things seem to be worsening
  • If you are concerned about a student, do not hesitate to notify the Student Care Team

How to Refer

Student Care Team referrals can be made by contacting the Office of the Dean of Students at 541‑346‑1138 or Please include:

  • Your name and relationship to student
  • A phone number at which the Student Care Team can reach you
  • The student’s name and ID number
  • A brief, factual explanation of your concern or observation, including key dates, times, and locations
  • What has been done so far to address the concern—conversation with student, consultation or check-in with colleagues—and the student’s response to those efforts

Remember that in any given situation there are probably several ways to address your concern for a student’s distress. Please contact the Student Care Team to discuss your concerns and your options.

Does the Referral Need the Student’s Participation?

Simply put, no it does not. There may be times when the student is not receptive to help or support. In addition, you may not have direct contact with a student and can still make a referral or report your concerns.

Referring a Parent

Parent and Family Programs staff is a resource for parents and family members of students. The staff is trained to help parents and family members navigate the university, with the end goal of empowering and serving students.

When to Refer

  • If there is a non-emergency wellness concern from a parent or family member of a student.
  • If a parent or family member has questions beyond your ability to help, needs additional support, or wants to provide feedback.
  • If a parent or family member is looking for additional ways to be involved at the university.

Why to Refer

  • Parents and family members are partners in student success and their contacts can often lead to students connecting with appropriate services and resources.
  • Parents and family members are frequently the first people students consult in difficult circumstances.
  • Directing parents and families to the best next step can reduce frustration and avoid a delay in a student getting support.
  • Parents and family members may have additional information relevant to students of concerns.

How to Refer

Parent and Family Programs referrals can be made by contacting the Parent and Family Programs at 541‑346‑3234 or

Trainings Available

Trainings are available for faculty and staff on de-escalation techniques and violence prevention and response methods. The trainings are taught by professionals at the UO Police Department, Counseling Services, and Emergency Management, and are offered regularly and by request. Call 541-346-3588 for more information or to schedule a training.

Employee Assistance Program

The UO contracts with Canopy to provide a comprehensive employee assistance program for eligible employees, their dependents, and eligible household members. The services are at no cost to eligible employees and include short-term professional counseling and assessment, legal and financial consultations, 24-hour crisis counseling and more. Canopy is located off campus and offers confidential services. More information about the program is available from Human Resources, 541-346-3159, or you can call Canopy directly at 1-800-433-2320 to schedule an appointment.