Let's Talk Drop-In Consultation Service

 

Let's Talk

Let’s Talk consultations:

On Tuesdays 1-3pm and Wednesdays 2-4pm In the Watauga River Room (Rm. 102), Plemmons Student Union

-provided by Appalachian State University Counseling Center
-take place outside the Counseling Center
-free of charge
-confidential
-offered on a first-come, first-served basis
-brief and informal (not a clinical service and not a substitute for ongoing counseling)

Let's Talk FAQ

What is Let’s Talk?

"Let’s Talk" was developed at Cornell University and has been implemented on a variety of college campuses. At Appalachian State, this program is available to enrolled students and provides easy access to informal and confidential support and consultation with counselors from the Counseling & Psychological Services Center (Counseling Center). Any student is welcome to visit any of our locations. There is no appointment or fee necessary. Students are seen on a first-come, first-served basis, and usually there is not much of a wait.

Who should visit Let’s Talk?

Students come to discuss a variety of topics, including:

  • Stress

  • Worry/Anxiety

  • Cultural barriers

  • Building friendships

  • Roommate struggles

  • Difficulty concentrating or paying attention

  • Financial struggles

  • Sadness

  • Adjustment/Culture shock

  • Problems in relationships with romantic partners, friends, family, roommates, faculty, etc.

  • Relationship break-ups

  • Homesickness

  • Academic performance

  • Sleep difficulties

  • Sexual orientation/Gender identity

  • Whether formal counseling may be a good fit for them

Although Let's Talk counselor consultants are professionals, Let's Talk is not a substitute for psychotherapy or formal counseling and doesn't constitute mental health treatment.

Let's Talk is not the best fit to address to psychological emergencies, such as recent traumatic events (e.g. a sexual assault), seeing/hearing things others do not, and concerns for immediate safety (including suicidality or homicidality). In these cases, students should seek help by walking in to the Counseling Center (first floor, Miles Annas Building) or, if outside of business hours, calling 828-262-3180.

Students should also contact the Counseling Center (or other psychological services provider to whom they have been referred) instead of going to Let's Talk in the following situations:

  • Waiting to start services with the Counseling Center or another provider but wanting to be seen sooner

  • Already receiving services at the Counseling Center or with another provider but desiring an earlier appointment

  • Feeling dissatisfied with current services at the Counseling Center or with another provider

What happens at a visit to Let’s Talk?

The counselor consultant will listen closely to your concerns, possibly ask questions and provide support, perspective, and suggestions for resources. When you come to a Let's Talk location, look to see if the office door is open. If it is, please come on in. If the door is closed, knock on the door and wait nearby for a few minutes until the counselor consultant finishes with the person they are talking with and comes to greet you.

What are the Let’s Talk locations?

Let’s Talk is at one location on campus: *

-Plemmons Student Union, Watauga River Room (#102), Tuesdays 1-3pm and Wednesdays 2-4pm

*If you arrive to a location and it looks as though the counselor consultant is not there, check the door sign to see if they have indicated when they will return. If a door sign is not present, Let’s Talk will not be available that day (e.g. due to inclement weather, counselor consultant illness or unavailability); please return the following week.

Let’s Talk visits are confidential. Are there any limits to confidentiality?

Let's Talk provides space for a brief conversation or informal consultation and it should not be confused with or substituted for counseling or therapy services. This is a confidential service; however, we may need to share information with others in the event of:

  • Any immediate risk of you ending your life or seriously harming someone else's life

  • The abuse/neglect of minors, elders, or those who are dependent on someones care

  • Court ordered requests for information

Information shared at Let's Talk is maintained by the Counseling Center and not included within educational records.

Who are the Let's Talk counselor consultants?

The counselor consultants are mental health professionals who are employed by the Counseling & Psychological Services Center and work in that setting as well as working at Let's Talk locations. Check out the bios of the Fall 2021 semester Let's Talk counselor consultants:

 

Ms. Adriana Varela-St.Clair

Adriana Varela-St.Clair, M.A.

Staff Counselor
(Pronouns: she, her, hers)
Licensed Clinical Mental Health Counselor Associate in North Carolina, National Certified Counselor
Graduate Program: Masters in Clinical Mental Health Counseling, Wake Forest University
Masters Internship: Counseling Services, University of North Carolina School of the Arts --->

Adriana enjoys working with college students with a variety of concerns. She is especially interested in helping students experiencing challenges with anxiety, stress, depression, eating concerns, and substance use, as well as issues related to gender and sexuality. She is also passionate about finding ways to bring counseling services to underserved and marginalized students.

Adriana integrates several therapeutic approaches in her counseling practice. She uses a person-centered approach that incorporates mindfulness, solution-focused approaches, and techniques from Motivational Interviewing and cognitive therapies. She focuses on meeting each client where they are, working to center their unique experiences and identities in order to empower them in reaching their goals.

Dr. Matt Morgan

Matthew C. Morgan, Psy.D.

Staff Psychologist

Doctorate Program: La Salle University
Doctoral Internship: Immaculata Consortium: Belmont Behavioral Hospital Outpatient Program

Matt has experience working in inpatient psychiatric hospitals, community mental health clinics, and college counseling centers and has worked with most varieties of psychological distress and illness. He has particular interests in mindfulness-based interventions and psychosis, but believes that all varieties of psychological distress inform aspects of the human experience.

Initially, Matt focuses on building understanding and appreciation of others experience, and drawing out the processes which contribute to distress. After mutually acceptable consensus is reached, he will likely encourage informed and relevant experimentations in self-awareness practices, daily habits, and styles of interaction. Matts primary training is in cognitive-behavioral and mindfulness-oriented treatment approaches, and is informed by a variety of perspectives, including evolutionary, psychodynamic, existential and transpersonal.

 

Let's Talk visits are never reported on a student's official university record.

We don't want anything to be a barrier to students accessing help. If you have further questions about confidentiality, we encourage you to discuss them with a Let's Talk counselor consultant.

If you have other questions not answered above please contact: Dr. Brooke Powers or email her at powersba@appstate.edu

The Counseling & Psychological Services Center at Appalachian State University is deeply indebted to the counselors at the Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) at Cornell University who pioneered and modeled "Let's Talk" and made it such a successful service at Cornell. Appalachian's Let's Talk program is based on Cornell's concept. With permission, some of the material from this website has been adapted or reproduced from the Let's Talk websites of Cornell University, Northwestern University, Southern Utah University, University of Minnesota, and the University of Notre Dame.

Emergency Services

The Counseling Center offers after-hours emergency coverage for urgent mental health concerns such as suicidal thoughts, sexual assault, and other trauma.  Call the Counseling Center at 828-262-3180 and select the option to speak with the counselor on-call.

For additional resources see our Emergency Services page.

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