Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS)

Counseling and Psychological Services will open 3/25/20 and will be operating remotely until further notice. We will begin provision of clinical services by phone or video on Wednesday, 3/25/20. All previously scheduled appointments will need to be rescheduled starting 3/25/20. Please note that an on-call counselor is available 24/7 by calling our phone number at 707-664-2153 and following instructions to talk to a counselor immediately.

If you are in immediate danger of harming yourself or another, please call 911 or go to your local emergency room. The CAPS resources page on our website also has helpful information for coping during this difficult time.

Tips for Coping with Coronavirus Concerns

Welcome to Counseling & Psychological Services at Sonoma State University. Our purpose is to support student mental health and wellbeing. To accomplish this, we offer short-term individual and group counseling, workshops, crisis intervention services, consultation, referral, training, and outreach. All currently enrolled students who pay the mental health fee (a mandatory campus fee paid at registration) are eligible for our services. There are no per-session charges for our offerings.

We strive to acknowledge, accept, and support the perspectives of a diverse campus population. This includes, but is not limited to, race/ethnicity, gender, age, sexual orientation, ability, religious/spiritual affiliation, socio-economic status, and immigration status. All are welcome here.

We have moved! We are now located in 17A, behind Salazar Hall

Office Hours

Mondays 8:00 AM to 4:00 PM

Tuesdays - Fridays 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM*

*Some evening appointments are available by request on a limited basis

For immediate response when you are in crisis and CAPS is closed, you can reach an on-call counselor at (707) 664-2153. For emergency situations that involve immediate risk of harm, please call SSU Police Services at (707) 664-4444 or 911 for the fastest response.


Confidentiality is an essential part of all counseling relationships. The CAPS staff adhere to the ethical standards of our profession as well as to state and federal laws relating to confidentiality. Therefore, you can be assured everything you say to your counselor is confidential unless you give us written permission to release information to a third party. There are some legal exceptions to confidentiality including situations in which your counselor determines that you are at imminent risk of harming yourself or others; child, elder or dependent adult abuse is suspected; and unusual legal exceptions including court ordered releases of information. Your counselor will discuss these exceptions with you at your first meeting.

Our Counseling Services

Crisis Counseling

We offer crisis counseling on a walk-in basis. Please arrive as early as you can during our office hours (8 am – 4 pm Mondays, 8 am – 5 pm Tuesdays – Fridays) and no later than one hour before our office closes. After hours, we have an on-call counselor available at (707) 664-2153. Crisis situations describe students who are currently (or within the past two weeks) experiencing any of the following situations:

  • Current intent to harm yourself or persistent suicidal thoughts
  • Recent release from a psychiatric hospital, or recent suicide attempt
  • Current intent to harm another or thoughts of harming another
  • Hallucinations (seeing/hearing things that don't exist or that others don't see/hear) or other serious symptoms of psychosis
  • Death of a loved one that is significantly impacting your functioning
  • Acts of discrimination, hate, or systemic oppression that are currently impacting functioning
  • Recent physical assault/abuse, sexual assault/abuse, violence or threat of violence
  • Crisis related to basic needs (homelessness, hunger, etc.)
  • Concern about the immediate safety of someone else

If you or someone else is in immediate danger of harm to self or others, do not hesitate, call 911 or come to CAPS (during working hours) immediately.

Single Session Therapy

Single session appointments are designed to focus on a key concern within 45 to 50 minutes. You choose what to focus on and the counselor will work with you to gain insight, shift thinking patterns, teach you coping skills, or suggest outside resources for the future. Please call CAPS at (707) 664-2153 to schedule your single session. We will try to schedule you within two weeks. Occasionally, single session therapy may be available during same-day hours or as due to last minute cancellations. Call or stop by CAPS to check on availability.

Initial Consultation for Ongoing Individual or Group Counseling

The initial consultation is a 20-minute session that is the starting point for receiving ongoing (not crisis or single session) services from CAPS. During this initial meeting, the counselor will collaborate with you to decide how to best meet your needs, whether at CAPS or within the community. If you would like an initial consultation, please drop by our office during our same-day hours, from 10:30 am to 4 pm, Monday through Friday. Wait times may vary depending on the same-day counselor’s availability. If you are unable to attend during these time frames, let us know and we will see if an alternative time can be found to schedule the consultation.

Regular Sessions

During the initial consultation, you and your counselor may determine regular individual therapy would be best for treating your concerns. We utilize a short-term model of therapy with the number and frequency of sessions determined by you and your counselor (upper limits of sessions are 10 per academic year though most students are seen for fewer sessions). These sessions are usually scheduled every other week or less frequently. If counselor availability becomes limited or if your issues are better served with more frequent or lengthier therapy, specialized services, or a higher level of care, your counselor will work with you to find resources for treatment in the community.

Relationship Counseling

Utilizing a short-term model, we offer counseling for two or more students who are having difficulty within their relationship. Relationship counseling is available to romantic and/or sexual partners, roommates, or friends. All students receiving relationship counseling must be currently enrolled at SSU and have paid the mental health fee.

Group Therapy and Workshops

Depending on your concern(s), group therapy can be as effective as, or more effective than, individual therapy. We offer a variety of groups ranging from skills-focused groups to relational groups (please see Current Workshops and Groups for a current listing). Some groups and workshops are drop-in while others require preregistration and regular attendance. The number of group sessions and workshops attended are unlimited.


There may be a time when you become concerned about the mental health of an SSU student and would like guidance about how best to communicate or cope with your concern. You may come in during our same-day hours (Monday through Friday 10:30 am to 4 pm) and meet with an available clinician to discuss your concerns.

How to See a Counselor

1. Single Session Therapy

Please call CAPS at (707) 664-2153 to schedule a single session therapy appointment. We will try to schedule you within two weeks. Limited single session appointments may be available during same-day hours or due to last minute cancellations. Call or stop by CAPS to check for availability.

2. New Clients for Regular Therapy

If you are interested in exploring ongoing therapy, first-time, non-emergency visits are seen on a drop-in basis. Please stop by Monday-Friday between 10:30 am and 4 pm to see the first available counselor for an initial consultation. Wait times will vary.

3. Current Clients

If you are a current client (for this academic year) who sees a CAPS counselor regularly, please stop by or call to schedule your next appointment.

4. Same-Day Drop-In hours

Same-Day Drop-In hours for initial consultations are Monday - Friday between 10:30 am and 4 pm. For crisis situations, please come in as early as you can during our office hours (Monday, 8 am 4 pm, Tuesday through Friday, 8 am to 5 pm) and no later than one hour before our office closes.

5. Groups

Please check our Workshops and Groups page (located under "Counseling Services" from the Navigation Menu). Many of our groups are drop-in and don't require pre-registration.

Emergency Numbers

SSU Police Services
(707) 664-4444 or 911

CAPS, including after-hours phone support
(707) 664-2153

Confidential Advocate - Susan Pulido
(707) 664-2698

Sonoma County Crisis Line
(707) 576-8181

Verity, Sonoma County’s Rape Crisis and Trauma Center
(707) 545-7273


CAPS webpages provide information only. If you want to talk with someone or make an appointment, please call us or stop by during office hours. Communication over the internet is not secure so we do not provide any online counseling. Please do not email information you consider privileged or confidential.

Take a mental health screening here!