Central Penn College - Disclaimer

Central Penn College



This form has been prepared to provide you with information regarding services rendered by the Campus Counselor at Central Penn College. You are encouraged to read and understand this material. The counselor will answer any questions you may have on this or any related material.

In order to make progress in treatment, your active participation in counseling services is crucial. This details your rights and responsibilities.


Prompt service – Counseling services makes all attempts to schedule a student within two weeks of initial contact with the office. Walk-in hours may be made available as more immediate needs may arise.  At some points in the term, there may be a waiting list due to the limitations of the services.

Counseling process – The counseling process contains three main phases – intake, treatment, and preparation for discharge. At the first session, the counselor will review your history, policies, and procedures for counseling services and decide with you the direction of care. The next session(s) will focus on interventions based on goals established for treatment. These interventions are to be evidenced-based and researched by the counselor. Then the counselor will prepare you for discharge with self-help tools and/or community referrals. 

Limitations of counseling services – The ability to receive counseling at Central Penn College is contingent on enrollment and there are regular breaks built into the college schedule.  Referrals to outside providers will occur if counseling under these circumstances is not considered to be the most ethical and appropriate level of care.

Effect of Counseling - The positive effects of counseling on overall functioning are well documented and researched, although it is important to understand that processing certain events, thoughts, and feelings can create discomfort and that may cause someone to discontinue counseling.  This is particularly important considering that counseling at Central Penn College occurs while participating in a rigorous academic schedule.  Most people who participate in counseling notice positive benefits by the end of the first month of treatment (4 sessions assuming weekly attendance).  Your counselor will work with you on determining if other forms of treatment and support will be more helpful should progress not occur within that timeframe.

Counseling Staff Responsibilities

Ethical practice – The counseling staff is held to federal and state regulations and a professional code of ethics. Services are to be rendered in compliance with regulations and ethically.

Respect - The counseling staff believes in respecting the dignity of each person. This respect is demonstrated through keeping appointments, informing you of any change in time necessary, minimizing session interruptions, and giving full attention during sessions. Counseling staff is not often readily available for contact due to sessions. In respect to you, efforts will be made to contact you back within 72 hours. Counseling services’ office hours will be posted each term and are subject to change.

The counselor will participate in the therapeutic relationship with respect towards you and encourage you to educate the counselor on your experience. In group settings, the counselor will monitor the conversation for any intentional and unintentional discrimination towards a person due to race, color, national origin, ethnicity, sex, age, religious orientation, sexual orientation, or disability. Disrespect is never tolerated.

Client Responsibilities

Emergencies - If you are experiencing emotional distress and/or considering harm to self or others, immediately contact Central Penn Security at 717-728-2364. The responding officer will contact counseling staff for mental health concerns after hours and a plan will be formulated to best help you. If it is life-threatening, contact 9-1-1 immediately.

Session Attendance– Counseling sessions are typically 45-60 minutes long. Please arrive promptly to allow benefit of session. If you are going to be late or will be unable to make it, it is your responsibility to contact your counselor via e-mail or phone. At least 24 hours’ notice is required so that any cancelled times can be offered to other students. If you are more than 15 minutes late, your appointment may be rescheduled.  If a client cancels with less than 24 hours' notice and/or "no shows" 3 times within the same term they will be unable to resume counseling for the duration of that term.  The client will be eligible to resume counseling in the following term that they are enrolled.

Cessation of treatment– Clients can discontinue counseling as they notice improvement and your counselor will work with you towards that goal.  This is usually done by staggering sessions from weekly, to every other week, to monthly until stopping entirely.  Clients are also able to resume treatment later if they are still enrolled at Central Penn College.

Excuses from class – Counseling services will not issue students notes or excuses from class. This policy is established because doing so creates an undesirable climate for the counseling staff and disempowers students. It is the student’s responsibility to ensure counseling sessions are scheduled outside of class times. Additionally, the student bears the responsibility to complete assignments and directly communicate with faculty if experiencing an academic issue.

Mandated counseling– Students can be mandated by other Central Penn departments to attend counseling.  It is the student's responsibility to contact Counseling Services to begin counseling.  The Confidentiality Statement explains how confidentiality applies under those circumstances.  Students who are mandated by outside agencies, such as probation/parole, may be referred to community providers after initial intake if it is determined that counseling at Central Penn College is not the appropriate or ethical clinical level of care.

ADA Statement – For students with a disability, Megan Peterson, ADA Coordinator is the contact for verification of disability and establishment of accommodations. Psychological testing is outside the realm of counseling services at Central Penn. The counseling staff may provide external referrals to qualified individuals for psychological testing.