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Health Services

Physical health and health maintenance is vital for student success. Our goals are to empower students to take responsibility for their health and to provide accessible services that complement the academic mission.

Nurse practitioners (ARNP) with prescriptive authority provide assessment, evaluation, diagnosis, treatment, and management of general health problems. In collaboration with the Student Counseling Center, the nurse practitioners coordinate medication evaluations and treatment for mental health concerns. Referrals to specialists are provided when medically indicated.

Health Services is located in Watson Hall on the first floor and is handicap accessible from the pedestrian walkway ramp. To schedule an appointment, contact Health Services at 206-281-2231 or visit spu.edu/depts/healthservices for more information.

Student Counseling Center

The Student Counseling Center (SCC) supports the mission of the University by providing brief counseling, premarital counseling, crisis intervention, referral, consulation, and education in order to address the mental health needs of SPU undergraduate students. The goal of the SCC is to help students find solutions to those emotional, social, and mental health challenges that interfere with learning and overall well-being and to educate the campus community about mental health issues.

The SCC is staffed with professional clinical therapists, professional graduate interns, and professional master's level externs who are committed to the growth and development of SPU students. Services include the following:

  • Counseling assessments to help students better understand the issues that are concerning them and recommendations for appropriate actions and/or services.
  • Crisis intervention for students dealing with issues of personal safety and overwhelming stress.
  • Referrals to counseling professionals and counseling agencies in the community.
  • Individual, relational (dating, premarital, marital, family, roommate), and group counseling. A six-session per academic year limit is applied in most cases to students served in the SCC. During times when the SCC has an extensive waiting list, the six-session limit may be reduced in order to serve all students wanting and needing counseling.
  • A special program for the treatment of eating disorders, consisting of a counselor who is a specialist in this area, a registered dietitian to provide nutritional counseling, and the expertise of Health Services to monitor clients medically.
  • In collaboration with the Health Services nursing staff, medication evaluation and management is available for students with more serious mental health problems.

To schedule a counseling appointment, students are encouraged to stop by the SCC to fill out a brief intake form. The SCC is located in Watson Hall on the first floor.

Any student in a crisis situation is encouraged to drop in without an appointment, and SCC staff will meet with the student as soon as possible that day.

Contact the Student Counseling Center at 206-281-2657 or visit spu.edu/depts/scc/ for more information.

Student Records and Confidentiality

Certain items of information about individual students are fundamental to the educational process and must be recorded. This recorded data concerning students is used for only clearly defined purposes and is safeguarded and controlled to avoid violations of personal privacy.

SPU has the responsibility to effectively supervise any access to and/or release of official information about its students. In this regard, SPU is committed to protecting the right of privacy of all individuals about whom it holds information, records, and files. Access to such records is restricted to the student concerned, to parents of a dependent student, to others with the student’s written consent, to officials within the University, and to a court of competent legal jurisdiction.

The following policies have been established to comply with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (hereafter referred to as the “Act”):

Public Information. The Act provides that public “directory information” about a student may be made available to third parties without permission of the student. However, public notices must be given of intent to publish the information, so that those students wishing to withhold information from public access (such as an unlisted telephone number) may do so.

Release of Information.
With the exception of directory information, no information in any student file may be released to any individual or organization without prior written consent of the student. When disclosure of information is mandated by court order or subpoena, the staff member receiving such orders must immediately notify in writing the student concerned, prior to compliance with the legal order.

Information from University records about students is released for approved research purposes only if the identity of the student involved is fully protected.

Student Access. With certain exceptions, official student information collected and maintained by SPU is available for inspection and review at the written request of the student. Clarification of exceptions may be obtained by contacting the university registrar.

A request for general access to all official records maintained by the University must be made in writing to the university registrar. A request for access to information maintained by a particular office may be addressed to the administrative head of that office. When making such a request, the student must provide proper identification.

The designated staff person must supervise the review of the contents of the record with the student. The student is free to make notes concerning the contents, but no material may be removed from the record. Student requests for access to appropriate information must be granted within 45 days of the written request.

If health reasons or extreme distance from the University prevent the student from inspecting the education record, then copies of specific education records will be made. The student must pay all copying expenses in advance of release of the record. Unless stipulated otherwise in the University’s current Undergraduate Catalog, all copies are 25 cents per page.

Confidentiality. The University allows any enrolled student the option of becoming confidential in the computer system to protect his or her identity from outside sources. 

A request for confidentiality must be submitted in person to Student Academic Services.

When an SPU student requests their records and identity to be flagged as confidential, the following ramifications may apply:

  • The University will respond to inquiries about the confidential student as though the student is not known at the University.
  • The confidential student may not obtain any information about records over the telephone, but must appear in person with proper identification to make any inquiry.
  • The confidential student will not appear in any student publications or listings, including, but not limited to, the Commencement brochure and the online directory.

Note: Student loan agencies may have difficulties accessing information necessary to carry out their functions. Since the University will not be able to confirm attendance, the confidential student's loans could possibly be placed into repayment status.

Before graduation:

  • Students graduating from the University should remove their confidentiality status at the time of graduation or at the time he or she leaves the University.
  • If the confidentiality status is not removed, the student may have difficulty obtaining information, and staff may be unable to identify them quickly or easily.
  • Also, keeping this confidential status could prevent future employers from gaining access to educational records.

Students who wish to remove their confidential status must come in person to Student Academic Services with proper identification.

Student Correction of Education Records. Students who believe that information contained in their education records is inaccurate, misleading, or violates privacy or other rights, may request that the University amend the records. The first step is to contact the university registrar or records custodian.

The University will decide within a reasonable period of time whether or not to do so. If the University declines to amend the student’s records, it will inform him or her of the right to a hearing. Upon written request, the University will provide an opportunity for a hearing to deliberate the student’s case. However, a hearing may not be requested by a student to contest the assignment of a grade.

If the hearing panel determines that the student’s challenge is without merit, the student may place in his or her record a statement commenting upon the information and setting forth reasons for disagreeing with the University’s decision. A complete copy of the University’s policy concerning the Act may be obtained by contacting the Office of Student Academic Services.

Students have the right to file complaints concerning alleged failures by the University to comply with the requirements of the Act.

Such complaints should be addressed to

Family Policy Compliance Office

Department of Education

400 Maryland Ave. SW

Washington, D.C. 20202-5901

For a complete listing of student policies and procedures, visit the Office of Student Life.

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