Short-term counseling is appropriate if you need several regularly-scheduled appointments with a counselor to help clarify issues, identify effective strategies to cope with difficult situations, and make positive changes in your life.

Monthly calendar icon showing one day every two weeks marked with a checkmark

How can short-term counseling help me?

Short-term counseling is appropriate for addressing problems such as:

  • You often experience depression and anxiety
  • You need help understanding a pattern of unhealthy relationships and setting boundaries with others
  • You are struggling with an eating disorder or substance misuse
  • You’re having difficulty managing stress or grief
  • You are dealing with sexuality or identity issues
  • You need help managing ADHD

How it Works

How do I get started?

To get started with short-term counseling, you will need to set up a brief 15-minute phone screening with a counselor. The counselor will ask you a few questions to make sure short-term counseling is the right option for you. To set up a phone screening:

  • Log in to the SHC Portal
  • Click Appointments
  • Select CWS Phone Triage

We need to speak to you by phone to make sure short-term counseling is right for you. Many problems may lend themselves to Single Session Counseling, Group Counseling, or a Wellness Workshop instead – or long-term therapy with an off-campus counselor.

How soon can I meet with a counselor?

The first meeting with your assigned counselor will generally be within 10 business days of your phone evaluation.

But I can't wait that long!

Short-term counseling isn’t the best option if you have a specific, pressing concern. It’s an ongoing relationship for when you need several appointments to dig into your concerns and start making positive changes in your life.

If you need to speak with a counselor sooner, we’ve got you covered!

Need help finding a solution to a day-to-day problem or specific concern?

Schedule a single session! Since these issues don’t require an evaluation before getting started, they’re generally available within a week.

Have a time-sensitive or urgent concern?

Call the Wellness Exchange at (212) 443-9999 to arrange an urgent same-day counseling session or speak with a counselor by phone.

How will I meet with my counselor?

Counseling appointments are available in person and virtually. For virtual appointments, you can speak to your counselor on Zoom or by phone.

Due to state licensing requirements, the SHC is only able to provide virtual appointments (telehealth) to students who are physically located in New York State at the time of the appointment. If you are located outside New York State, learn about your options. If you have any questions, let us know during your phone screening.

Who will my counselor be?

You will work with the same counselor throughout your time in short-term counseling. 

How many appointments can I have?

You will typically meet with your counselor on a biweekly basis. The frequency and exact number of appointments will be decided by you and your counselor based on your clinical needs.

What if I need more than that?

If you need more than a few appointments – or if you want to meet with a counselor more frequently (weekly or twice weekly) – short-term counseling isn’t the right choice for you.

Instead, you should explore long-term care in the community so you can have ongoing sessions with a counselor and the assurance that they will happen weekly or even more frequently.

CWS does not provide long-term therapy, but we can make referrals for counseling resources in the community. We make every effort to identify providers who are affordable or in-network with your insurance provider. You can also contact your health insurance provider to find a long-term counselor in your network, ask your friends and family for recommendations, or search for a counselor near you on PsychologyToday.

While short-term counseling focuses on developing effective strategies to manage difficult situations, long-term therapy tends to be a more in-depth exploration of how your past, thoughts, or experiences may affect your life today.

It may take a few weeks to find a long-term therapist who is accepting new clients and a good fit for you. This can feel frustrating. But if you need long-term therapy, it’s important to establish a relationship with a therapist that you like and trust who can work with you for as long as you need.

If you're interested in referrals for long-term therapy in the community, call the Wellness Exchange at (212) 443-9999 for assistance.

More Counseling Options