Referral & Counseling Guiding Principles
Departmental policies specify the criteria for referral to treatment for ATOD concerns and the procedural issues associated with referral including timeliness, confidentiality and expected follow-up. Counseling resources include a range of modalities. Services are accessible and scheduling is compatible with class, practice, athletics training and game and travel schedules, so that students can be seen in a timely fashion. Collegial relationship development between athletics and counseling staff contributes to a process that is sensitive to the unique athletics culture and required protocols of counseling and confidentiality.
Evidence-Based Strategies to Address Referral & Counseling
The College Alcohol Intervention Matrix (CollegeAIM) was created by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) to help schools select evidence-based programs for substance misuse prevention. Interventions listed below are rated by higher, moderate or lower effectiveness or there is mixed evidence/too few studies to rate effectiveness. As you develop your action plan, first consider the items below.
- Personalized feedback intervention: in person – individual (e.g. BASICS)
- Alcohol Skills Training Program (ASTP)
Programs developed by past APPLE attendees:
Athlete Guidance and Support - University of California, Davis
- AGS is a student-run mental health resource group within UC Davis Athletics. They focus on on events and outreach and have developed a system to help student-athletes connect with mental health resources.
Health and Wellness Captains - University of Pennsylvanie
- After the 2019 APPLE, a team of Penn Athletics staff and student-athletes created a student-athlete led, peer-to-peer network of student-athletes who are passionate about health and wellness topics.
Student-Athlete Campfires - University of Virginia
- UVA SAMs created a monthly series of "campfire" meetings to allow small groups of student-athletes to talk about mental health issues in an open, honest environment with their peers. The goal is to break the stigma of mental health stuggles so student-athletes feel supported by their peers.
Safe Harbor Program - Illinois State University
- Documents include the drug testing policy, specific sanctions, information on the Safe Harbour program and signature forms. Safe Harbor is a self-referral program for student-athletes with a substance use disorder. The 30 day program exempts students from University drug testing, but not NCAA testing. Students cannot self-refer less than 30 days before NCAA post-season play.
Counseling Policy (p. 13) - Virginia Tech
- Counseling is mandatory for any student-athlete who tests positive. The counselor determines when to terminate counseling, and missed sessions are reported to the substance abuse committee (SAC).
Safe Harbor (p. 37) - University of Mount Olive
- Student-athletes can seek help for a substance use disorder through the Safe Harbor program. Students retain their athletics aid and are not suspended from the team unless medically necessary, Safe harbor counts as a first positive drug test.
Drug Education & Testing Program - Springfield College
- The policy describes the purpose of procedures for drug testing. There is a detailed description of the Safe Harbour program for students who self-refer for a substance use disorder.