A welcome letter from the director of CAPS

Sept. 25, 2016, 8:14 p.m.

Welcome to the incoming class of 2020, transfer students, first-year graduate students and all returning students to Stanford’s campus. As director of Counseling and Psychological Services, more commonly known as CAPS, I am excited about embarking on a new academic year, which will offer much promise and challenge.  

I especially welcome students from traditionally underrepresented groups. Your presence adds great value to the Stanford family as we continue to learn from and support each other.  

Each one of you is either embarking on or continuing a journey of self-discovery. Your time at Stanford will not only stretch your cognitive and creative abilities but also your emotional resilience. You will accomplish things you never felt you could, but you also may experience frustration, setbacks, losses and even failure. And it is during those times that being part of a community fully committed to your well-being is so important.

Finding the unique balance that works for you is an important part of this journey.

I encourage all of you to use your time fully and wisely, remembering to pay attention to self-care. Getting enough sleep, eating a healthy, vitamin-rich diet, exercising, socializing and building satisfying relationships are all important. One of the advantages of studying at Stanford is the large support network behind you to encourage you, especially during difficult times.

CAPS is part of a family of services within Vaden Health Center that can support you, answer your questions about mental health and provide treatment. We have a large staff, composed of individuals who bring different life experiences, training and skills. CAPS professionals represent a variety of cultural, religious, ethnic, racial and language backgrounds as well as gender and sexual identities. All of us are here because we value the opportunity to work with you.

If you feel that you are overextended, reach out to a friend, a Resident Assistant or Community Associate, a Residence Dean, Graduate Life Dean or a Resident Fellow. Staff at the university’s community centers, the Office for Religious Life, Academic Skills Coaching and Vaden also are good sources of support, as are other staff, faculty or family members.

If you find it difficult to come see us at Vaden, you can visit us in several locations across campus, including some of the community centers or in the engineering or medical schools. Just let us know you are interested a non-Vaden location when you call.  

Be assured, no matter where you see us, you will receive the highest-quality mental health services from staff trained in evidence-based treatments. Furthermore, your care is confidential, complying with federal and California law as well as ethical standards of the American Psychological Association and the American Psychiatric Association.

If you have any difficulty accessing care, please reach out to me directly so I can facilitate the process. Our goal is the mental health and well-being of the entire student body.

You may also consider helping us improve our services by participating in CAPS’ Student Advisory Committee. This is a monthly meeting between concerned students — graduate and undergraduate — and CAPS staff to obtain input and collaborate on solutions to access and care. If you are interested in assisting, I invite you to contact me for the date and time of our first meeting.

Once again, congratulations to you all! Welcome (back) to Stanford, and best wishes for a productive year. 

– Ron Albucher

Director of  Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS)


Contact Ron Albucher at albucher ‘at’ stanford.edu.

The Daily is committed to publishing a diversity of op-eds and letters to the editor. We’d love to hear your thoughts. Email letters to the editor to eic ‘at’ stanforddaily.com and op-ed submissions to opinions ‘at’ stanforddaily.com.

Login or create an account