Counseling Center eases the barriers for students from any community to access mental health services.
The University Counseling Center (UCC) is the heartbeat of mental health services for UND students. Located at McCannel Hall, the UCC is staffed by licensed counselors, psychologists and social workers who offer in-person and tele-mental health services.
Carolyn Broden, ’16, ’18, is UCC’s Assistant Director of Substance Use Services and Outreach. Licensed in both mental health and addiction counseling, Carolyn sees students from all populations and communities on campus. Each session is catered to the person sitting in front of her.
“I am a person of color, I went to UND, and I’m from Grand Forks … but what works for me isn’t always going to work for someone else,” she explained. “As a provider, I can’t make decisions for an entire population based on what works for one person. So, my job is to figure out what therapy methods work on an individual basis and give my client the platform to speak on what works and what doesn’t.”
A large focus of UCC is providing coordinated care for its clients. For clients who have lacked access to necessities, this can be the essential piece to mental health and well-being. “We use our resources and sessions to identify barriers to getting basic needs met. Because when you’re struggling with significant mental health issues, it can make coursework and classroom learning very difficult,” Carolyn said.
For instance, when a student is facing food insecurity, they are introduced to the Food for Thought Food Pantry. Students with health concerns are connected to Student Health Services. All services are included in student fees so that cost isn’t a barrier to care.
Crisis response is also a large part of UCC’s role in providing community-specific care. After the plane crash killing Aviation student John Hauser in October, UCC quickly created an Aviation student support group offering drop-in counseling sessions for students at the John D. Odegard School of Aerospace Sciences. Carolyn has been a regular presence on site. She leaned on her experience starting the BIPOC support group for students to process the racial unrest of 2020.
“When something like that happens, our team jumps overnight. In this case, it wasn’t ‘How in the world are we going to make it work?’ It was, ‘How soon can we get there, who do you need and what can we do?’” said Carolyn.
Carolyn also serves on the Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Task Force and as an Inclusion Ambassador. As such, one of her missions is to ramp up the publicity of UCC to all communities across campus so students are ever aware of the open invitation to pay a visit or make a call.
When you’re struggling with significant mental health issues, it can make coursework and classroom learning very difficult.
UNIVERSITY COUNSELING CENTER SERVICES
Counseling Services are available for UND students that are enrolled in the current semester. UCC offers a variety of services so that every student can get the help they need. Services are available both in person and via telehealth services.