Skip to main contentSkip to main navigationSkip to footer content

Division of Student Affairs
Students of Concern

Division of Student Affairs has been working to create a process by which any member of the community with concerns about a student can bring that concern to the attention of the people on campus who can assist. Often times, students who are experiencing challenges in one aspect of their lives also struggle in other areas. In many instances, students are experiencing levels of anxiety or distress which faculty and staff can provide adequate support through empathetic listening, open discussion of problems, and offering basic advice. There are times, however, when students require more serious intervention and support from the appropriate staff members. The following guide is intended to provide general guidelines for what to do if you are interacting with a student who is experiencing difficulty.

How to Express a Concern:

  • Contact the Office of the Dean of Students at 315-470-6660, 110 Bray Hall
  • Contact ESF University Police at 315-470-6666, 19 Bray Hall
  • Email the Division of Student Affairs at
  • Online Report

Reporting concerning behavior does not have to wait until normal business hours. ESF University Police are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week to assist. In those instances where Student Affairs staff are needed after hours, University Police will contact the necessary Student Affairs staff to assist in responding.

Level of Concern

Low Level of Concern

Behaviors Response

Behaviors that may be negatively interfering with academic or personal success, and may warrant consultation or follow-up with Student Affairs staff.


  • Academic or social performance deteriorates
  • Missing class frequently
  • Falling asleep in class
  • Difficulty adjusting to college life
  • Potential withdraw/leave of absence
  • Changes in physical appearance/hygiene
  • Time management/procrastination
  • Lack of cooperation when requests are made
  • Discussion of transferring

Your expression of interest, concern, and compassion is an important factor in a student seeking out the assistance they need. Often you can help a student by asking some basic questions, listening, offering some basic advice, and referring students to campus resources.

If a student needs more support than you can provide, you can contact Student Affairs at 315-470-6660 or complete a student of concern report by clicking here.

Medium Level of Concern

Behaviors Response

Behaviors that are more than an individual community member should handle, are temporarily manageable and not usually life-threatening, but may be a sign that an individual's coping skills are being challenged. These behaviors may require that the appropriate Division of Student Affairs staff member speak with the student to assess the situation and determine an appropriate response.


  • Attempts to instigate fights
  • Withdrawal from friends
  • Covert or indirect threats
  • Physically acting out in anger
  • Comments about weapons
  • Increased isolation or irritability
  • Emotionally erratic behavior or severe emotional distress
  • Suspicion of drug use or dealing
  • Alcohol problems that impair social or academic performance
  • Behaviors that significantly disrupt classroom or residence hall
  • Increased hopelessness or helplessness
  • Disturbing content in academic work

Document the situation with as much detail as you can and contact the Office of the Dean of Students. The Dean of Students (or designee) will respond and determine whether to convene an intervention team to decide on the appropriate intervention, and take action based on the assessment of the student.

While the behaviors in this category are not likely to be immediately life- threatening, they should be reported at the earliest opportunity.

You can report these behaviors by:

Calling University Police: 315-470-6666

High Level of Concern

Behaviors Response

Conduct poses imminent safety concerns for the student in question, for others, or for the general campus community.


  • Clear intent to harm self or others
  • Physical assault
  • Intense anger
  • Overt threats to kill
  • Showing a weapon
  • Suicide attempt or expression
  • Drug or alcohol overdose

ESF University Police should be called immediately at 470-6666, or call 911

ESF University Police officers are the emergency responders on campus and are trained to intervene in emergency situations. They will also engage other resources as needed. These resources may include outside law enforcement or medical personnel, etc.

Information on this page is based on content developed by Texas A&M University, Iowa State University, and East Carolina University. This content has been adapted by ESF Office of the Dean of Students staff.