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Document Type

Open Access Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)

Degree Program

Education (also CAGS)

Year Degree Awarded

Spring 2014

First Advisor

Sharon Rallis

Second Advisor

Maureen Perry-Jenkins

Third Advisor

Ryan Wells

Subject Categories

Counseling Psychology | Higher Education | Student Counseling and Personnel Services

Abstract

Over the past 10 years college counseling centers (CCCs) have been urged to broaden their focus considerably and to serve the entire campus community due to increases in student mental health issues. Engaging in outreach efforts is one way to address campus wide needs. However, few research efforts have been conducted to systematically investigate how outreach is practiced at a small college. The dialogue around outreach has focused on single programs at large institutions rather than the network of interventions that occur on a campus. The purpose of this study is to understand the web of relationships between a counseling center and the college community. This qualitative case study describes the various outreach activities of a small college counseling center from the perspective of the counseling center staff and members of the college community. Using ethnographic tools (i.e., semi-structured interviews, focus group, and context analysis), this study describes the different systems the counseling center navigates to serve the college campus. The study identifies how members of a counseling center develop a shared pattern of outreach behavior. This study adds to the literature in several ways: it increases our understanding of how a small college counseling center supports the campus community and provides a model or framework for how outreach is performed on a smaller campus.

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