Palomar College’s Behavioral Health Counseling Services (BHCS) provides individual, couples, and group counseling services, consultation, outreach, and psychological services to support Palomar College students. Detailed information can be found throughout this website.
Currently enrolled students who have paid the $19 per Fall and Spring semester ($16 during Summer semester) Student Health Fee are eligible to receive services. There is no minimum unit requirement.
Scope of Our Services
Behavioral Health Counseling Services invites all students to make an initial appointment to meet with one of our counselors and discuss their concerns. During this initial meeting, the counselor, in collaboration with the student, will recommend services within Behavioral Health Counseling Services or the community and assist students in obtaining the appropriate services to meet their needs.
When appropriate, students may be referred to services offered within Behavioral Health Counseling Services (BHCS). BHCS offers a brief therapeutic model with an emphasis on developmentally-oriented therapy directed at helping students succeed in the college environment. The level of services including but not limited to the number, frequency, and type of sessions, the appropriateness and availability of supportive resources and programming on-campus and off-campus treatment are determined by a clinical assessment completed by the BHCS clinician/supervisor. When specialized or longer-term services are needed, BCHS can assist in making referrals off-campus professionals, treatment programs, and local community agencies.
Some of the issues that are commonly addressed in short-term counseling in Behavioral Health Counseling Services are:
- Personal Issues: Stress and anxiety, depression, anger, loneliness, guilt, low self-esteem, grief
- Relationship Issues: Romantic relationship difficulties, sexual concerns, roommate problems, family issues.
- Developmental Issues: Identity development, adjustment to college, life transitions
- Academic Concerns: Performance anxiety, perfectionism, underachievement, low motivation
- Other Issues: Effects of trauma, sexual assault, abuse, concerns from childhood or adolescence, spiritual concerns, body image, food preoccupation, healthy lifestyle choices
Students whose needs cannot be accommodated within short-term behavioral health counseling are referred to community resources. Similarly, students whose needs require a particular type of expertise that is not found in BHCS are also referred into the community. Behavioral Health Counseling Services provides referral services either after the initial session or as these factors become more apparent during the course of services. The student’s therapist or Behavioral Health Counseling Services Director or Case Manager can provide referral options that we believe will best meet a student’s needs. In the event a student follows through with seeking support through a community agency or provider, a Palomar College Behavioral Health Counseling Services Case Manager may be assigned to the student and will also follow-up with the student to be sure the referral was facilitated and offer additional assistance in finding resources as necessary.
Some of the issues that are commonly addressed through referral to services outside of Behavioral Health Counseling Services include:
- A desire or need to be seen more than once a week or for conditions that necessitate longer-term therapy
- Students needing specialized care for conditions not available through Behavioral Health Counseling Services including but not limited to:
- Presence of significant drug and/or alcohol problems such substance dependence, primary substance abuse, and/or past failed treatments
- Presence of severe and persistent depression, post-traumatic stress, schizophrenia, and/or bipolar disorder
- Presence of significant or long-standing eating disorder with no period of remission, no previous treatment, or that may pose a medical danger
- Request for psychological evaluation for the purpose of employment clearance or other nonacademic purpose
- Services to fulfill students’ court-mandated assessment or treatment requirements