Worried about your student’s use of alcohol or other drugs? - Health and Wellness Center - Penn State Altoona

Counseling & Psychological Services

Worried about your student’s use of alcohol or other drugs?

If you have concerns about your son or daughter’s use of alcohol and/or other drugs, do not ignore them.

Here are a few suggestions:

  • Try to remain calm
  • Be honest about your concerns with your son or daughter, but don’t be accusatory. Don’t speak in generalities, use specific examples that have led to your concern. For example, “I’m worried about your drinking because ...
    • you mentioned that you had blackouts (couldn’t remember part of the evening)”
    • your grades have been falling and several times you missed your morning classes because you were hung-over”
    • I’ve noticed your tolerance to alcohol has increased”
      For example, “I worried that you may be using drugs because…
    • you have been running out of money and can’t explain why”
    • I found a pipe (or needle, or pills) in your laundry”
  • If you need to speak with someone about your concerns, call the Health and Wellness Center (814-949-5540) and ask to speak with Essie Auker, the Certified Advanced Alcohol and Other Drug Counselor. Although she cannot speak directly about your student, she can offer some guidelines.
  • Encourage your son or daughter to seek options through the Health and Wellness Center. Confidential counseling with the Certified Advanced Alcohol and Other Drug Counselor is available.

Websites that may be helpful:

The Counseling Center is staffed by licensed counselors who provide both individual counseling and case management services. The Center's staff is dedicated to assisting students in their pursuit of personal and academic growth, to help students gain a better understanding and appreciation of themselves, and to support students as they make important decisions about their lives. Contact the Health and Wellness Center at 814-949-5540 to schedule an appointment or schedule through the Online Student Access secure portal.

Come see us
Mon - Thurs — 8 a.m. - 8 p.m.
Fri — 8 a.m. - 5 p.m.