CAPS focuses on free student mental health help

The Counseling and Psychological Services department provides students with mental health options, including one-on-one and group sessions. The CSULB department is part of Student Affairs and is free for all enrolled students.

“It’s one of the resources that’s available on campus. Nobody has to come in and be prepared to pay, thankfully,” Amanda De Loera-Morales, CAPS director, said.

She said if a student were to make a future appointment to see a counselor, the wait time between making the appointment and seeing the counselor is up to two weeks. Students can set up these appointments through a phone call to the department or by walking in and scheduling one.

Morales said if students need more urgent help, the department would link the student with a service that is more suited to their needs. This takes the form of one of their crisis counselors. There are also after hour services that are done by a contracted service. Students would simply call the same number for CAPS and be switched to this service.

The department has a team of 20 on-campus counselors available to students. Their disciplines range from licensed clinical social workers to psychologists. Morales said, in the past, students have asked her how bad they have to be to seek mental health assistance.

“In the end, this is a space for you if you feel that it would be helpful to connect to another resource to help navigate whatever struggle, whatever is going on. It’s not a matter of being this, that or feeling this bad, if you feel you have a need, we are available to you.”

The department works as a counseling space for students to use and there are a variety of different types of counseling options for students to take advantage of at CAPS. Morales said students have the option for one-on-one sessions, either in-person or on Zoom. There are also group or community sessions.

Group sessions focus on different themes. They range from anxiety, to depression and grief, for which there’s help available. There are also drop-in sessions for students who may not want to commit to a group session. Morales said sessions like these can just be quick, informal chats with a counselor, compared to traditional sessions.

CAPS also has upcoming workshops for this semester. Students need to be referred by a clinician in the department. One example of these groups is Resiliency Reboot, a four-week workshop to help students with resilience and coping. This workshop is held on Wednesdays from 1:30 p.m. to 2:45 p.m. It runs from Sept. 6 to Sept. 27.

Christopher Leal, CAPS Outreach Coordinator, said the counseling services for CAPS are located in Brotman Hall on the second floor.

Counseling and Psychological Services is on the second floor of Brotman Hall in room 226.
Long Beach, Calif: Cal State Long Beach students can get free assistance in working on their mental health at the Counseling and Psychological Services on the second floor of Brotman Hall in room 226. Photo credit: Juan Calvillo

“Our CAPS office is located in Brotman Hall 226 and our office is open Monday through Friday 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.,” Leal said.

CAPS can be reached at 562-985-4001. For more information, check out the CAPS website.

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