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Counseling FAQs

Here you’ll find answers to common questions students and faculty have about our counseling services.

What types of counseling does the staff provide?

The Counseling Services staff provides personal counseling services for the OTC community. We provide our services primarily in a private office setting meeting one-on-one with a counselor. Although, we provide some services in a small group setting or through Internet based services via webcam. Our staff also works closely with our Academic Advising to provide advising/educational planning services.

Do I need to make an appointment to see a counselor?

Occasionally individuals can walk in and see a counselor on the spot. However, to ensure an uninterrupted, private meeting with a counselor, our staff asks individuals to come by or call in advance to schedule an appointment.

Does the staff provide distance (email, Internet) counseling?

Staff have access to email through OTC and are happy to respond to student/client inquiries that are general in nature. Because email is not a secure medium and we cannot guarantee confidentiality of content, counselors encourage individuals to come in and visit in person to discuss private issues. We also provide webcam counseling services, which is confidential and secure, at our Lebanon and Waynesville Education Centers.

What are the office hours?

Office hours are Monday through Thursday, 7:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. and Friday 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on the main campus in Springfield.

Office hours are Tuesday 8:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. at the Richwood Valley Campus.

Webcam services are also available. Please contact our office at 417-447-6974 or email counseling@otc.edu to arrange webcam counseling or to arrange an appointment at either Lebanon Education Center, Table Rock Campus or Waynesville Education Center.

What types of degrees and credentials do the counseling staff hold?

Counseling Services counselors hold masters’ degrees in counseling from accredited counseling programs, are supervised by Licensed Professional Counselors and/or retain the required certification and/or licensure in their particular area of expertise.

James Carpenter, Coordinator of Counseling Services
M.S. Counseling
National Board Certified Counselor
Licensed Professional Counselor

Tricia Bremer, Counselor (part-time, Main Campus-Springfield)
M.S. Counseling
National Board Certified Counselor
Licensed Professional Counselor

Doug Greiner, Psychologist (part-time, Main Campus-Springfield)
PhD, Counseling Psychology
Licensed Psychologist

Jennifer Holum, Counselor (part-time, Richwood Valley Campus)
M.A. Counseling
Provisionally Licensed Professional Counselor

Robert Keyes, Counselor (part-time, Table Rock Campus)
M.S. Counseling
National Board Certified Counselor
Licensed Professional Counselor

Lindsay Sorbo, Counselor (Lebanon Education Center)
M.A. Counseling
National Board Certified Counselor
Licensed Professional Counselor

Joyce R. Bateman, Assistant Dean of Students
M.S.Ed. Counseling
Licensed Professional Counselor

What will happen if I do not want to sign the Information and Consent document?

We will be happy to work with an individual for one scheduled session in which we present the document. However, without a signed and dated Information and Consent form on file, we will not be able to schedule any further counseling appointments.

I recently set up an appointment for personal counseling. What can I expect on my first visit?

When you arrive for your appointment, a member of our department staff will greet you and inform your counselor your arrival. They will ask you as a new counseling client (in the privacy of your counselor’s office) to read and sign the Counseling Services Information and Consent document prior to the start of the session. Staff will also ask to inform the counselor how you prefer to be contacted (if at all) in the event the counselor must reschedule a future appointment. Once you and our staff complete these necessary “housekeeping” tasks, you will begin visiting with your counselor about the reasons you are seeking counseling services.

What is the difference between personal and career counseling?

Individuals (or small groups) who seek personal counseling (sometimes referred to as mental-health counseling) often have issues that are interfering with their life satisfaction. Common examples of personal counseling issues may include (but are not limited to) struggles with anxiety (test, performance and/or generalized anxiety), depression, stress, relationship communication, abuse, grief or post-traumatic stress disorder. Counselors are available to work with minors (under the age of 18) for personal counseling issues; however, minors will need to obtain parent or guardian permission if he/she wishes to participate in more than one personal counseling session.

Individuals who seek career counseling want assistance in career or college major decision-making. Career counseling may involve researching careers, learning about the process of career decision-making, taking career assessments and studying related college major opportunities. For additional information on career counseling, please see Career Employment Services .

OTC designed its Academic Advising services to assist new and returning students in developing educational and career plans, selecting appropriate majors and courses and accessing campus resources. For additional information, please see Academic Advising.

Are services available for currently enrolled, college students only?

Personal counseling services are available to currently enrolled post-secondary students. If you are an employee of OTC, our services will refer you to community counseling agencies following your first appointment with an OTC counselor. (NOTE: for information about counseling and career assessment services available to OTC’s Career Center students, please visit the Career Center website).

Are there any fees for counseling services?

There are no fees for our individual or group counseling services.

What types of services are available for OTC employees?

Counseling Services in the form of classroom presentations and consultation regarding students of concern are available to OTC employees. We encourage employees to visit our Employee Resources link for details concerning these services.

The professional counseling staff of OTC’s Counseling Services Department primarily focus on promoting student health and development. Due to limited staff and resources, we are not able to offer on-going, individual counseling services to college employees. College employees are, however, eligible for one, individual consultation and referral session at no charge.

Employees who desire to take advantage of this consultation and referral session should call (417) 447-6974 for further information. If you are a full-time employee of OTC, we also encourage you to contact OTC’s current insurance provider to locate mental health professionals who are preferred providers.

Will the staff give me a diagnosis for a mental disorder if I come in for personal reasons?

Counseling staff may provide screenings for mental disorders (including depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress, substance abuse, eating disorders and bipolar disorder) but we do not make mental health diagnoses. We do work closely with an individual’s referring physician, mental health or social service provider. We well-verse ourselves in the wide variety of diagnoses that these referring agents may make.

What kinds of community referral resources are available?

Since we intend our counseling services to be short-term, referral to an outside agency may be helpful.Our department has an extensive network of mental-health, social service and physical health referrals. Many of our referrals provide services at a reduced or at no cost to the client. To receive a referral recommendation, individuals can call our department, come in for an individual meeting or visit our website link for community referral resources (pdf).

What does it mean that services are “confidential”?

Counseling Services adheres to the American College Association (ACA) Professional Code of Ethics. Counseling files are not a part of the college records, and other cannot access them without the student’s written permission.

We provide our individual personal counseling services in a private setting. Clients can be assured that information they share with their counselor in this setting remains confidential. Information about our clients and their issues is released only in specific mandated circumstances. Examples may include: if a client threatens harm to him or herself or to a third party; in cases of child or elder abuse/neglect; or if a client gives the counselor written permission to disclose information outside the confines of the counseling office.

My instructor referred me for counseling. Will the counselor talk to my instructor after I complete my counseling session?

Without written permission from a client, counselors may not disclose any information about a client to anyone outside of the counseling department. This includes disclosing information to concerned instructors, OTC administrators or loved ones. Occasionally, when an instructor refers a student to the counseling center, the student can give permission to confirm with the instructor that the student did come in for a counseling session. Again, we only disclose this information with the client’s expressed written consent to do so.

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