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Student Health Services

Mental Health

  • Facilitator Questions
    • What has been the biggest difference you have experienced or think you will experience from your last school to Clemson University?

    • Are the stressors you experience the same as before or different?

    • What are some ways you have been involved during the past few weeks here at Clemson? What are some things you may consider getting involved in this semester?

  • Academic Resources

    Go to your instructor’s office hours! They are there to help you; it’s their job, and they will appreciate you putting forth the effort to ensure your own success. They can be some of the best connections you make during your time at Clemson University.

  • Fast Stats

    In 2022, our data for Clemson University students found that: 

    • 38% of Clemson students reported that stress impacted their academic performance. The next two highest mental health concerns were anxiety and depression (NCHA, 2022). 

    • 28.4% of Clemson students have received professional mental health care services in the past year (NCHA, 2022).

    • 1 in 5 U.S. adults will experience mental illness at some point in their lives whether it is stress, anxiety, depression or other mood disorders (SAMHSA, 2020). 

    These are cases that have been reported. Many mental health illnesses go unreported for a variety of reasons. Everyone copes with mental health in different ways and may identify mental health concerns at different points in their life. 

  • Resilience

    Resilience or grit is the ability to overcome and draw strength from difficult situations.

    The good thing about resiliency is that it has been conclusively shown to be a skill that everyone can learn, develop and practice.

    What builds resilience?

    • Hanging on through a challenge

    • Learning from an experience

    • Strong relationships – getting involved on campus with people that are passionate about the same interests, causes and areas of study that you are; creating a support system here at Clemson

    • Seeing your current situation as a turning point – separate the past from the present; understand that after every set back is a chance to learn, grow and move forward towards success and happiness

    • Humor and realistic optimism – expecting a favorable outcome, being hopeful and positive in all aspects of life, and not dwelling and focusing on the negatives and unfavorable situations

    • Appropriate environmental supports

    What thoughts and behaviors make it harder to become resilient?

    • Negativity bias – bad experiences are more impactful than positive ones

    • Denial – difficulty accepting the event or experience

    • Victim mentality – “why does this always happen to me?”

    • Placing blame – on yourself or others

    • Comparing yourself to others – everyone is on their own path to success; just focus on becoming the best version of yourself

    • Avoidance – not talking about it and not seeking support

    Protective factors for resilience:

    • Supportive family and friends

    • Regular physical activity – any type of exercise/physical activity that you enjoy

    • Mindfulness meditation and/or faith based services – spiritual expressions/positive affirmations that fit who you are as an individual

    • Access to health care

    • Strong social relationships with positive peer influences and mentors

    • Characteristics including social skills, problem solving abilities, autonomy and sense of purpose

    • Community programs


    Take a minute to write 1–2 strategies you plan to incorporate into your life that could build resilience when faced with stressful situations.

  • Minority Stress

    Minority stress refers to the type of stress experienced by individuals from stigmatized minority groups (Meyer, 2003).   

    This type of stress can be experienced through microaggressions, achievement stress (i.e., feeling intellectually inferior or less capable than one’s peers), and racism and discrimination (Carter, 2007; Diemer, 2007; Smedley, Myers, & Harrell, 1993). 

  • Stress

    Stress usually shows up as an emotional or psychological state of tension, but it’s common to also physically “feel” stressed out because of the physiological and hormonal changes caused by stress. Here are some symptoms that indicate a high level of stress:

    • Changes in sleep patterns

    • Changes in eating patterns

    • Increased frequency of headaches

    • Being more irritable than usual

    • Recurring colds and minor illnesses

    • Frequent muscle aches and/or tightness

    • Being more disorganized than usual

    • Increased difficulty in getting things done

    • Greater sense of persistent time pressure

    • Increased frustration and anger   3


    Learn More About Stress

    Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS)

    Online Mental Health Screening

    File a CARE Report

    3 Stress - ULifeline. (n.d.). Retrieved from  URL

  • Depression

    Signs of depression are listed below: 

    • Persistently sad, anxious, irritable or empty mood

    • Loss of interest in previously enjoyable activities

    • Withdrawal from friends and family

    • Trouble sleeping or sleeping too much

    • Fatigue and decreased energy

    • Significant change in appetite and/or weight

    • Overreaction to criticisms

    • Feeling unable to meet expectations

    • Difficulty concentrating, remembering details and making decisions

    • Feelings of worthlessness, hopelessness or guilt

    • Persistent physical symptoms such as headaches, digestive problems or chronic pain that do not respond to routine treatment

    • Substance abuse problems

    • Thoughts of suicide or suicide attempts


    Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS)

    Online Mental Health Screening

    File a CARE Report


    Source: ULifeline

  • Suicide

    If you believe a person is at immediate risk to harm themselves or others, you must contact emergency services and get help.

    More often than not, individuals who are contemplating suicide will give some warning of their intentions to a friend or family member. All suicide threats, gestures and attempts must be taken seriously. Here are some warning signs that a person may be at risk for suicide:

    • Talking about feeling hopeless or having no reason to live

    • Talking about feeling trapped or in unbearable pain

    • Talking about wanting to die or to kill oneself

    • Talking about being a burden to others

    • Withdrawing or feeling isolated

    • Looking for a way to kill oneself, such as searching online or buying a gun

    • Having access to self-destructive means

    • Increasing the use of alcohol or drugs

    • Acting anxious or agitated; behaving recklessly

    • Sleeping too little or too much

    • Showing rage or talking about seeking revenge

    • Displaying extreme mood swings

    Asking the Question: QPR

    QPR, or “question, persuade, refer,” allows you to help an individual until expert care arrives. Just like in CPR you are not a heart surgeon, in QPR you are not a counselor but you do have the power and skillset to help an individual say safe.


    Have you ever worried that asking someone about suicide might cause it to happen? It’s not uncommon for a lot of us to worry about that, and even those of us who know better, still find ourselves feeling uncomfortable about asking directly when confronted with a person who is in crisis. The most commonly held myth regarding suicide is that talking about it will make it happen; however, the opposite is actually true. Bringing up the subject and discussing it is one of the most helpful things you can do, as it helps a person who is thinking about suicide feel understood and demonstrates that you understand the amount of suffering that the person is experiencing (Campus Connect, Syracuse University). The most important thing is to just ask. When you do ask, here are some things to remember:

    • Go ahead and ask

    • Ask open-ended questions

    • Be persistent

    • Be direct and specific; use words like suicide and killing yourself

    • Let the person talk and engage in active listening

    • Make sure you are somewhere private so they can speak freely

    • Be prepared - make sure you have resources (names and numbers) available to use then and there


    In this step, remember to

    • listen and give them your full attention,

    • don’t rush to judgment,

    • make sure to offer and emphasize hope in any form and

    • when they are finished speaking, then ask: “Will you go with me to get help?”

    It is important to note that your willingness to listen can rekindle hope and make the difference.


    On Clemson’s campus, you can refer and go with the person to   CAPS, located in Refern Health Center.

    If the individual discussed a plan with you, do not leave them alone. Again, go with them to CAPS and/or call 911.

    For QPR to be effective, remember to also tell the person why you want them to live - I am there for you/on your side. You also want to get others involved, like friends and family, in addition to CAPS.

    Don't be sworn to secrecy. Seek support. Offer hope that alternatives are available, but do not offer glib reassurance. Take action. If possible, remove means, such as guns or stockpiled pills.


    Learn More About Suicide

    Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS)

    *An after-hours CAPS counselor is available and can be reached by calling the Clemson University Police Department at 864-656-2222 and asking for the CAPS counselor on call.

    Online Mental Health Screening

    File a CARE Report

    Emergency Contacts

  • How to Get Help

    When should you use the CARE Report, and when should you call 911 and the police for depression/suicidal thoughts?

    • If you think there could be a threat of harm to self or others, please call 911 immediately.


    Student Health Services

    Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) 

    • 864-656-2451
    • CAPS is located in Redfern Health Center and is the University's only facility for personal counseling, psychological testing, outreach and consultation. An after-hours counselor is available and can be reached by calling 864-656-2451 and selecting option 2.

    Clemson University Police Department (CUPD) 

    Tigers Together to Stop Suicide 

    988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline

    • Call or text 988
    • Free, Confidential, 24/7

    Crisis Text Line

    • Text “HELLO” to 741-741
    • Free, Confidential, 24/7

    Suicide Prevention Lifeline 

    • 1-800-273-TALK

    Office of Advocacy and Success

    my.Clemson App


    • An ombuds is an independent, informal, neutral and confidential resource who provides assistance to members of the University community in exploring options to resolve problems, complaints and conflicts when normal processes and procedures have not worked satisfactorily.

    LGBTQ Task Force

    Sexuality and Gender Alliance

    Student Veteran Resource Center

    Student Accessibility Services


    • ULifelineis an online resource for college mental health.

    Additional Resources on Mental Health

Student Health Services
Student Health Services | Redfern Health Center, 735 McMillan Road, Clemson, SC 29634