The SCS is committed to excellence in training within the context of our comprehensive service delivery system that offers clinical, career, training and developmental/preventive services to a diverse university community while honoring the mission, vision, and values of the agency.
The philosophy of the SCS reflects the belief that the delivery of high quality counseling services, the professional development of staff, and the formal training of pre-professionals are intimately intertwined. The historical commitment to training is extensive, and occurs at several levels, including masters and doctoral-level practicum trainees, doctoral psychology interns, new staff supervision for licensure, and the ongoing professional development of our staff.
In mid-March 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic necessitated changes to clinical service delivery, outreach/programming initiatives, and administrative operations at Student Counseling Services (SCS). All clinical services, outreach initiatives, training seminars, meetings, and supervision sessions were transitioned to online delivery using a HIPAA compliant Zoom platform. Following the quarantine period, most of our staff continued to work from home. Illinois State University closely followed the State of Illinois five phase Restore Illinois plan for guidance regarding the safe re-opening of campus for the fall 2021 semester and in August of 2021, the entire Student Counseling Services staff returned to the office full time. Student Counseling Services continues to deliver some clinical services in person, whereas other services, such as group therapy, continue to be delivered through a HIPAA compliant Zoom platform. Staff and trainees have returned to gathering for in-person meetings, training seminars, and supervision sessions while wearing face coverings. Since Student Counseling Services is classified as a “health care facility,” staff is required to wear face coverings in common spaces, during meetings, and while delivering clinical services. If staff members wish to remove their face covering while alone in their own offices, they are permitted to do so. Commonly used areas and “Zoom rooms” for students are subjected to additional cleaning measures. Illinois State University will continue to follow the benchmarks for the Restore Illinois plan. This means that if infection rates climb, the state may revert to prior phases, which may necessitate that more staff and trainees work from home. University-issued laptops and access to all clinical applications have been provided to staff and trainees. However, internet access will not be provided by the University; therefore, individuals are responsible for ensuring they have a reliable and secure Internet connection. During the uncertainty caused by COVID-19, there have not been any budgetary threats to our internship, externship, or postdoctoral residency programs and at this time, we do not expect there to be.