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For Parents

The Office of Student Life, in cooperation with other offices, is dedicated to fostering the welfare and independence of your student. Through purposeful guidance and exposure to adequate resources, we are committed to providing a culture of care on our campus. As a Jesuit institution, one of our leading values is cura personalis, a Latin phrase meaning "care for the person". Caring for the personal development of the whole person (emotional, mental, spiritual, physical) is a community effort including support from families, peers, faculty, and staff. The Office of Student Life is attentive to advocating for students and involving them in the process at hand. At times, we do this in partnership with parents. The Office of Student Life is available to parents to address questions and concerns. Please read on for additional information and resources.

How to Recognize a Student in Distress:

  • Significant deterioration in quality or quantity of work
  • Repeated absences
  • Missed assignments, exams, or appointments
  • Written or artistic expression of unusual violence, social isolation, despair, or preoccupation with suicide or death
  • Repeated requests for special accommodations, e.g., paper extensions, make-up exams, etc.
  • Patterns of perfectionism. e.g., the inability to accept any grade but an A
  • Overblown or disproportionate response to grades or other evaluations
  • Direct statements indicating distress or loss
  • Angry or hostile outbursts, yelling, or aggressive comments
  • Withdrawn from others, low motivation
  • Excessively demanding or dependent behavior
  • Failure to respond to outreach from family, friends, or professors
  • Shakiness, tremors, fidgeting, or pacing
  • More animated than usual, euphoria, overly enthusiastic
  • Paranoid, excessively vigilant, fear that others are going to cause harm
  • Extreme disorganization or erratic performance
  • Deterioration in physical appearance or personal hygiene
  • Excessive fatigue, exhaustion, falling asleep in class
  • Visible changes in weight, statements about change in appetite or sleep
  • Noticeable cuts, bruises, or burns
  • Frequent or chronic illness
  • Disorganized, rapid or slurred speech, confusion
  • Unusual inability to make eye contact
  • Coming home bleary or red-eyed or smelling of alcohol or marijuana
Aggression Extreme withdrawal Medical issues or concerns
Alarming writings or drawings Failing grades Missed multiple classes without contact
Anxiety Family abuse Non-responsive to outreach
Attempted suicide Feels that they have been unfairly or is being targeted  Overly stressed or overwhelmed
Bizarre or erratic behavior Financial issues Preoccupation with guns, ammunition or weapons
Depression Flat affect or extreme lack of responsiveness Preoccupation with fire or bombs
Disconnected from reality Grief and/or significant loss Self-injurious behavior (cutting, burning, etc.)
Drug abuse/dependence Homelessness Significant change in behavior, hygiene, or self-care
Eating disorder (anorexia or bulimia) Hostility Significant change: academic performance
Extreme rudeness Incoherent or slurred speech Suicidal thoughts expressed


How to Help a Student in Distress:

When in doubt, let someone know that you're worried about your student. If you know that they may be struggling with personal, emotional, or academic difficulties, the most direct way to get them support is to submit an online Student of Concern Referral Form . Upon retrieval, a member of the Office of Student Life will then reach out to the student to offer support and resources. Reports can be made anonymously.

If you're aware of a specific issue that you think is important for the Office of Student Life to be aware of, please submit the appropriate reporting form listed on this page.

For more urgent concerns, please reference the contact listing below:

If a Student . . .

Contact . . .

is in possession of a weapon

Campus Safety at 408-554-4444 or 911

is an imminent harm to self or others

Campus Safety at 408-554-4444 or 911

is a potential harm to self or others

Cowell Center at 408-554-4501 and Office of Student Life at 408-554-4583

is a victim of recent violence, abuse, or sexual violence

Cowell Center at 408-554-4501 or Wellness Center at 408-554-4409 or Title IX at 408-551-3043

has been a victim of past violence or abuse

Cowell Center at 408-554-4501 or Wellness Center at 408-554-4409 or Title IX at 408-551-3043

is experiencing psychological distress impairing the ability to learn effectively

Cowell Center at 408-554-4501

is verbally or emotionally abusive

Cowell Center at 408-554-4501 or Office of Student Life at 408-554-4583

is engaging in conduct contrary to that in the Student Handbook

Office of Student Life at 408-554-4583

has engaged in academic dishonesty

Office of Student Life at 408-554-4583

is having difficulty managing academic load or stress

Drahmann Center at 408-554-4318

is experiencing family or personal crisis or loss and needs to miss classes

Office of Student Life at 408-554-4583

is suspected of alcohol or drug use interfering with academic effectiveness

Cowell Center at 408-554-4501 or Wellness Center at 408-554-4409

is having financial difficulties

Financial Aid at 408-551-1000

is a victim of bias, harassment, or discrimination

Office of Student Life at 4583 and Title IX at 408-551-3043 


  • Faculty Notification: When a student is unable to contact professors about an absence due to hospitalization, incapacitation, or a family crisis, they may contact the Office of Student Life to have their faculty members notified. The student will be included in the notification and is responsible for following up with each professor regarding the missed class time as soon as the student can do so. For additional information, please click here.

  • Food Insecurity Program: If a student does have reliable access to sufficient quantities of affordable, nutritious food, please request support through the Office of Student Life. Support can be requested directly by the individual or others on behalf of the student.

  • Off Campus Living: The Off Campus Living Office supports students in their transition to off campus living including assistance in finding housing and managing off campus living responsibilities.
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