The University of Chicago Student Counseling Service (SCS) has a Diversity Committee that plans diversity-related programming for SCS staff throughout the academic year. This programming includes formal trainings conducted by professionals outside of SCS and more informal self-reflection and discussions guided by SCS staff. Through these trainings we learn about specific racial, ethnic, class, religious, disability, sexual orientation, and gender groups and work to increase self-awareness about our own values, beliefs, and biases. Over the last ten years programming has focused on topics including: religion, race, nationality, gender identity, economic diversity, and sexual orientation.
What We Believe
We believe that all aspects of diversity are important and intersect with one another—race, ethnicity, nationality, immigration status, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, ability, religion/spirituality, socioeconomic status, age, body shape/size, and point of view.
We believe that being culturally competent clinicians is integral to providing effective therapy for all students. We believe that cultivating cultural competence is an ongoing process and we must continually learn about and become comfortable with groups of people who are different than us.
We believe stereotypes, prejudice, discrimination, oppression, power, and privilege exist. We recognize these forces cause major life traumas as well as daily hassles. We understand that these societal forces negatively impact the mental health of the people who experience them and it can be helpful to address experiences of discrimination and microaggressions in the context of therapy.
What We Intend
We intend to treat each student with respect and openness. We seek to learn about the experiences, beliefs, and values of the students we meet. We strive to increase our self-awareness about our own values, beliefs, and biases.
We strive to make our services accessible and welcoming to students who may be apprehensive about seeking therapy due to stigma about mental illness and lack of familiarity with the therapeutic process.