Counseling Services Confidentiality

Risk and Benefits

Counseling can have risks as well as benefits. Because counseling often involves discussing challenging aspects of your life, you may experience uncomfortable feelings such as sadness, guilt, anger, frustration, loneliness, or helplessness. On the other hand, counseling can also lead to positive resolutions such as solutions to specific problems, improved relationships, and reduction in distress. Be aware the outcome of counseling cannot be guaranteed.

Client Records

In line with ethical standards and the law, McKendree University Counseling Services maintains appropriate records. These records include: dates of service, appointment time, general topics addressed, symptoms noted and the type of intervention provided by the therapist. Records may contain information including your medical, social, and treatment history as well as your goals and progress throughout treatment. Your records are kept secure and never become a part of your academic record.

Limits of Confidentiality

McKendree Counseling Services are required by law to inform you of the limits of confidentiality. Information about you can only be released with your written authorization except in the following situations where no authorization is required.


      • If you are under the age of 18, you may be seen for 5 sessions without parental consent. We must have permission from the parent or guardian in order to participate in more than 5 sessions of counseling.

      • If you present an imminent, serious risk of physical or mental injury or death to yourself.

      • If you communicate a specific threat of imminent harm against another individual.

      • If you report a child may be a risk of abuse or neglect.

      • If you report that an individual who is protected by state law (e.g. the elderly or those deemed incapacitated) has been abused, neglected or financially exploited.

      • If mandated by the Court to participate in counseling. Your attendance in sessions and record may be subject to review. Clarify this with your therapist.

If you exhibit concerning behavior that is addressed at the Student of Concern Meeting, the therapist may only share pertinent information that can be used to develop a plan for success at McKendree. The Student of Concern meeting is an interdisciplinary team that consists of members from Student Success, Res. Life, Vice President of Student Affairs and Counseling Services. These members work together to devise a plan to help students achieve success at McKendree both academically and emotionally.