Dean of Students  
   

Crisis Response

Aquinas College Students of Concern Committee and Crisis Response Team
 
Purpose
Webster's definition of “crisis” is, in part, “an emotionally significant or radical change of status in a person’s life; an unstable or crucial time or state of affairs whose outcome will make a decisive difference for better or worse.”  In our Aquinas College community we know that crises will occasionally occur and will require a timely response.
 
At Aquinas College we pride ourselves on the fact that many students, faculty, and staff know each other on a first name basis. However, as a result of this closeness, an emotionally significant event or upheaval in one person’s life can have a potentially profound impact on the larger campus community.
 
Our Aquinas College counseling, disability services, campus safety and health and wellness professionals are available to assist students.  All of these professionals provide confidential assistance unless required by law or professional ethics to take action to protect the individual or vulnerable other(s) from serious or foreseeable harm or imminent danger. If there is serious or foreseeable harm or imminent danger to the individual or others, professional ethics and legal responsibilities require steps be taken to protect the individuals involved. 
 
Students of Concern Committee

Mission:

The mission of the students of concern committee is to identify and respond to students that are of a concern to the campus community and assist in their success intervening when necessary and acting as a conduit between key departments and administrators. Recognizing the sensitive nature of this information, the committee operates in strict confidentiality in compliance with all relevant federal regulations
 
Goals:
The goals of the Students of Concern (SOC) Committee are:
  1. To assist in the direction of a student in crisis while paying special attention to the safety and security needs of community members.
  2. To offer counseling, guidance, insight, referrals, and any other feasible type of support needed to members of our community.
  3. To use the experience of crisis, when appropriate, as a teachable moment which may enhance the quality of life for all of those touched by the experience.
 
Members of the Students of Concern (SOC) committee meet biweekly during the academic year to stay ready to respond appropriately to any crisis. Team members are pledged to confidentiality and may be entrusted with highly confidential information. At Aquinas our SOC committee consists of members of our Counseling, Disability, Wellness, Campus Safety, and Residence Life staffs. 
 
In the event of an urgent or emergent crisis, a subset of this committee, the Crisis Assessment Team is activated. The members of this team have completed special training through Priority Health Systems and have been trained to assess and refer the student of concern.  
 
>>AQ Protocol for Helping Distressed & Distressing Students (pdf)
 
Each situation is unique and involves responding to the specific needs of the student of concern. Questions or suggestions about protocols, procedures or policy issues may be directed to the Associate Vice President for Student Affairs, who chairs the Students of Concern (SOC) committee.