Intervention team helps faculty support troubled students

3/5/2009 - By: Natalie Savidge

The reality for any campus community is that some students will find it difficult to deal with the stresses of life, and may experience anxiety, depression or other troubling behavior. The University of Nevada, Reno has responded by creating a team to help support potentially troubled students as well as educate and train faculty to identify and assist students who appear to be troubled.

The Student Intervention Team (SIT) provides support, coordination of intervention services and referrals for identified students, with the goal of reducing incidences of harm to self and others. The team also seeks to increase faculty awareness of signs that may indicate a potentially troubled student.

“The SIT team has become a central communications resource where we come together to share information about student issues and coordinate services, while adhering to strict confidentiality,” said Allison Bussa, Disability Resource Center coordinator. “We provide a safety net for individual students needing a little extra care and attention.”

Bussa and Cindy Marczynski, assistant director of Counseling Services, are co-chairs of the SIT team.

Last fall the Student Intervention Team launched its new website. Staff and faculty members are encouraged to contact the team regarding any student concerns.

“Many problem situations and distressed students resurface and it’s important to track and monitor problems, as well as support identified students,” Marczynski said.

Previously known as the Faculty Consultation Team, SIT is a team of professionals from a variety of campus programs and services. In addition to providing support for students, the team provides training for faculty and staff to help identify and effectively approach students of concern. To schedule department trainings, faculty should submit an online Training Request Form.

Faculty and staff who want to help a student can visit the Web site for a list of common causes or sources of student distress; signs and symptoms of distressed students; signs and symptoms of disruptive students; tips for possible intervention and tips for prevention of classroom disruptions.

Programs and services represented on the SIT team include Counseling Services/Substance Abuse Treatment, Disability Resource Center, Student Conduct, Residential Life, Student Health Center, and Police Services.


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