Counselling & Career Services
Helping You Shine Your Brightest
What's Happening in Counselling & Career?
During Office Hours
- Contact Us for an appointment
If you are experiencing a personal emergency a counsellor may be available as soon as possible. Please note these spaces are reserved for emergencies such as in the case of recent assault, suicide risk or crisis situations.
- Walk-in Wednesdays
Individual counselling appointments are offered every Wednesday, starting at 8:45am (first come, first served)
2019 Workshops & Groups Schedule
- For campus emergencies contact Security at 403-329-2345 or dial 911
- Familiarize yourself with Risk & Safety Services Policies on the UofL Campus
Sexual Violence Awareness & Support
Book an appointment with one of our Career Coaches here.
- Security at (403) 329-2345
- Distress line of Southwestern Alberta at (403) 327-7905 or 1 888 787-2880
- Other Community Resources
- If you would like to report worrisome or concerning behaviour you can complete a Behavioural Intervention Report.
It's Free! Counselling, workshops and group sessions are available free of charge to all registered students.
- You can expect to do most of the talking.
- Your counsellor will probably ask brief, clarifying questions and make interpretive comments.
- They may also ask typical assessment questions about your symptoms, medications(s), past counselling, or drug and alcohol use.
- The counsellor will evaluate your situation, help you establish specific goals, and identify possible strategies for making change.
- It is up to you to determine what you want out of the counselling experience.
- You need to be an active participant, honest about yourself and ready to fully participate in the sessions.
- It is expected that you will work collaboratively with your counsellor to establish goals and tasks for therapy, and that you be willing to work towards those goals by completing mutually agreed upon tasks.
- You cannot attend sessions while under the influence of drugs or alcohol. If it becomes apparent that your judgment is impacted by drugs or alcohol, your counsellor may end the current session and ask you to come back.
- All our counsellors are highly experienced and well-trained generalists who are committed to their own professional development. You may see a Registered Psychologist, a Provisional Psychologist, a Clinical Social Worker, or a Graduate Practicum Counsellor. We are a teaching facility, and our Graduate Practicum Counsellors are supervised by another counsellor on staff.
- No. Our approach to counselling is collaborative and unless there is an immediate safety concern, we do not see mandated clients.
- Our counsellors use many different types of therapies. We have training in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), Process-orientated therapy, Solution Focused therapy (SFT), Feminist Therapy, EMDR, Positive Psychology and Mindfulness based approaches.
- Your counsellor may suggest a variety of techniques, some of which may seem strange to you. If you have any questions or don't feel comfortable practicing certain exercises such as certain relaxation techniques, it’s important that you tell your counsellor. You have the right to stop any exercise at any time during any session.
- Although your counsellor will be supportive, they also should challenge you. As you begin to process new ways of thinking you may feel annoyed, tired or upset. Other times you may leave a session feeling much lighter. Change can be difficult in the short-term, but it's usually positive in the long-term. If you have any concerns please talk to your counsellor.
- The length of individual sessions and the duration of counselling depend largely on your specific needs, but generally last for 45‐50 minutes.
- We offer short-term counselling, averaging between 3-10 sessions. Your counsellor can help assess the amount of support you need.
- Individual sessions are usually scheduled once every week, or once every two weeks but you and your counsellor may decide to meet more or less frequently depending on your individual needs.
- If long-term counselling is required, we can refer you to an outside agency. For more information please see our Community Resources page.
As a professional, your counsellor is part of an association that has rules about the types of interactions they are allowed to have with clients. A counsellor cannot
- Be your therapist if they are related to you or if they are your friend
- Be your supervisor, teacher, or evaluator while engaged in counselling with you
- Have any kind of romantic or sexual relationship with a former or current client, or with any people close to a client
- Have any other kind of business relationship with you besides the therapy itself
- Give or receive gifts from clients except tokens with personal meaning to the therapy process
It's important to feel safe with your counsellor so if you realize you're not comfortable with your counsellor, or aren't getting what you need from the counselling process, you have a right to request a referral. Ideally you will be able to talk to your counsellor about what would be a better fit and they can transfer your file to another counsellor who may be a better fit for you.
Likewise, your counsellor has a right to feel safe in their work and can ask that your care be transferred. This can occur if the counsellor believes their personal values, experiences or reactions will interfere with their ability to provide you with the best care possible.
If you have serious concerns about your counselling and believe that your counsellor will be unwilling to listen and respond, or that they have behaved unethically, you can contact Barbara Williams, the Coordinator of Counselling Services at (403) 317 2845 to discuss your concerns. We take criticisms and suggestions seriously and will try to respond with care and respect.
- Because your counsellor is concerned about protecting your confidentiality, they will not approach you if they see you in the hallway or in the community. This practice is meant to protect your confidentiality.
- As professional counsellors, we are bound by strict rules of confidentiality. As a result, we rarely provide detailed information about a student’s situation and cannot confirm if they are a client with our office.
- We cannot speak to your friends, parents, teachers etc. without your permission. If you would like us to share information with other people, such as an academic advisor or doctor, you must give us written permission.
- You have the right to change your mind and revoke that permission at any time.
Your counsellor is legally bound to break confidentiality if they believe:
- You are in imminent danger of harming yourself
- You will harm another person
- A child is being abused, neglected or is a witness of abuse
- A dependent adult is being harmed or abused
- If your record is subpoenaed
During your first visit you will complete our intake form. On that form you can indicate if it's okay for our office to contact you via phone or email. If it is, we may contact you in these ways.
- Phone - If our receptionist is phoning you, the number will come up as blocked on your phone. If your counsellor is contacting you from their direct line, their name and extension number may appear on your phone.
- Email - Please be aware that email is not completely confidential. Any email received or sent to your counsellor will be printed out and kept in your file.
By signing this form you are authorizing Counselling Services to release information about you or your situation to a specific recipient.
- To another agency for referral purposes
- To your counsellor to enable them to discuss your situation with another individual or agency
Note: Others may not be bound by the same confidentiality rules as U of L Counselling Services. If you have any concerns about the nature of information being shared please discuss it with your counsellor. You have a right to see any letters written by your counsellor before they are shared with other agencies or departments.
- Intake and Consent to Counselling forms
- Copy of your transcripts
- Case notes
- Copy of any letters written on your behalf
- (If a returning client) Previous case file
- (If signed) Consent for release of information
- You have full access to your file and may request it at any time.
- You may request that your counsellor copy the case notes as counselling proceeds, so you can keep your own file.
- No. Files are protected and we cannot speak to other people or departments without your written permission.
- Limits to this confidentiality exist should an immediate, high risk of harm to yourself or others arise.
- At Counselling Services, we utilize an on-line calendar. This means that the receptionist and the other counsellors employed by Counselling Services may see your first name, last initial and ID number in the calendar. If you would prefer, ask that your initials are entered only.
- Although the calendar is password protected, there is a risk that third parties may see your first name and last initial in the system.
- If a court subpoenas a copy of the calendar, a third party may also see those details.
- We keep files in locked cabinets in an alarmed area. We use a shared filing system which means that our receptionist and other on-site counsellors have access to where your files are stored.
- A file is officially closed when you and/or the counsellor agree you don't need to attend sessions anymore
- If, following initial contact with us, we have not heard from you for a period of 30 days
- Files are shredded after 10 years
Sometimes students experience extreme extenuating circumstances which are beyond their control and impact academic performance. In these situations, your professor or advisor may refer you to Counselling for a "letter of support" for accommodations due to a personal problem.
The counsellor's role in this process is to work with the student to:
- Explore and assess the student’s personal and academic situation
- Explore all options available to the student
- Decide if they deem that the student’s request for a letter of support warrants consideration.
If the counsellor agrees to write a letter of support, the student will need to complete a release of information form, allowing your counsellor to write the letter. It is the responsibility of the student to meet with their advisor or the involved faculty member to give them the letter, complete any additional paperwork and to work out the details of the accommodation. The letter in no way guarantees that the student will be granted the accommodation, but simply argues that, in the counsellor’s professional opinion, the request warrants consideration.
To learn more about the various types of academic accommodation please refer to:
University of Lethbridge Calendars ACADEMIC REGULATIONS
Our Career Counsellor can help you: create a career vision & path, as well as help you uncover your interests.
Our Career Coaches can help you with: Resume & cover letter review, Networking, Job search, Interview prep & Career building
If you feel you need help in both areas, feel free to book an appointment with both our Career Counsellor & our Career Coach!
For Career Counselling, please see our front desk to fill out the appropriate paperwork & book an appointment.
For Career Coaching, you can book an appointment online, through Career Bridge
No. Our Career Team takes a narrative approach. If you have more questions about this approach, feel free to book an appointment & discuss your future career with a Career Coach or Counsellor.
Yes! Our Career Coaches are happy to schedule appointments with Calgary campus students, students on practicum & alumni through the video conferencing platform, ZOOM. Please select "video-conferencing" as the mode when booking your appointment online.
Career Coaching is available to prospective students, current students & alumni!
Faculty & Staff
Faculty and Staff play an integral role in students' well-being. Due to our small campus size and our close interactions with students, you may easily come across a student who is clearly in distress. The following resources are provided to help you manage this type of situation.
Employee and Family Assistance Program (EFAP)
The UofL EFAP is a confidential resource provided to help faculty, staff and family members (who are under the benefit program) enhance their personal and workplace function.
The EFAP offers:
- Identification and assessment of personal, family and work-related problems;
- Short-term counselling and consultation
- Referral to appropriate services and resources