Services: Discover what CaPS can offer you
We offer consultation services to students. Consultations typically involve talking with a therapist about a particular issue, perhaps worry about a friend or a question about your own mental health. Students interested in services at CaPS will have a consultation as their first encounter with a CaPS therapist.
We also offer consultation services for staff, faculty, advisors, or administrators. Consultation can address such issues as campus and community services, referring a student to services, and intervening with a student in distress.
CaPS offers free, confidential short-term psychotherapy to students enrolled at the Pittsburgh campus. Having a conversation with a non-judgmental, culturally-sensitive therapist is a good place to start. The sessions provide students the opportunity to speak freely and discuss private, personal issues.
Students seek therapy for a variety of reasons ranging from self-exploration to having a personal difficulty or being in distress. Read more about this in Who goes to CaPS?
If a student is interested in longer-term care or needs more intensive support or frequent visits, CaPS staff can help identify resources in the community.
Groups at CaPS involve a small number of students meeting together, under the guidance of a trained CaPS therapist, to develop greater capacities to support oneself and each other. Groups can provide powerful opportunities for growth, understanding, and connection. They offer the chance to come together with others to share concerns, explore personal issues, deepen self-understanding, try out new behaviors and new ways of relating, and learn new skills.
To read more about how groups can be helpful visit our FAQ page.
Groups for Spring 2018 (pdf). Call or email now to schedule a screening appointment.
Outreach and Educational Presentations
CaPS offers outreach presentations, seminars and discussion groups on a variety of topics. Workshops can be requested by anyone affiliated with CMU and are facilitated by CaPS professional staff or graduate students in training.
We have done presentations on topics like healthy relationships, self-care, resilience and how to help a friend. Presentations are not limited to these topics and can be developed toward your special interest or concern.
For more information or to request an outreach presentation or tabling event, please contact Viviana Ferrer-Medina, Psy.D., Outreach Coordinator at 412-268-2922. We ask that you give us at least two weeks notice before the workshop date.
CaPS is happy to collaborate with University Health Services (UHS) and its Health Promotion initiatives encouraging students to lead a healthy and informed campus life. Please check out their list of health education programs available to the CMU community. We also partner with Health Promotion in offering monthly Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) trainings to the campus community.
In cases when there is a desire or need for longer-term care, specialized care, or a higher level of care, CaPS staff will help students consider resource options in the community that are accessible and affordable. These might include long-term psychotherapy, psychiatric care, psychological evaluations, or specialized care for things like eating disorders and substance abuse problems.
Students who already know they want to connect with services in the community may call CaPS for assistance and to discuss options. You will likely have to use your health insurance to pay for services. Typically, your health insurance will cover a portion of the cost per session. Please note that for those students using the CMU Aetna health insurance, therapy sessions are covered in full with no copayment.
CaPS partners with University Health Services (UHS) to provide transitional psychiatric care. Your first step is to contact CaPS to schedule a consultation to determine your mental health care needs and make arrangements for your medical records. If appropriate, you will then be scheduled with the psychiatrist for an initial psychiatric evaluation. For students whose medication needs fall within our scope of practice, we can provide medication management for a limited period while your team helps you connect with long-term care in the Pittsburgh community and coordinates with your care provider at home. Following your initial visit with the psychiatrist, transitional medication management may be provided in partnership with prescribing clinicians at UHS.
Please note that an evaluation for transitional medication management requires medical records from any previous mental health care providers. We do not provide medication on demand. We will assist students with urgent medication refill needs by connecting them with their previous provider or local emergency center for assistance.
CaPS and UHS do not guarantee that all psychiatric treatment needs will be managed by UHS staff. Refills of controlled substances such as stimulants and benzodiazepines and other treatment needs requiring a higher level of oversight will be considered on a case-by-case basis, after review of previous medical records and psychiatric evaluation at UHS.
CaPS and UHS partner to provide community referrals to students requiring complex and/or long-term psychiatric needs and for specialized issues like a formal assessment for ADHD/ADD medications. We can help you identify and connect with psychiatrists in the community.
It is most often best to participate in therapy while taking medication, as this can offer the greatest gains over medication alone. If you are interested in medication without therapy, we can help determine whether this would be advisable.