GSC approves resolution against travel ban, discusses changes to special fees process

Feb. 8, 2017, 11:43 p.m.

The Graduate Student Council (GSC) approved a joint resolution against the Trump administration’s travel restrictions and discussed changes to the special fees application process. Director of Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) Ron Albucher also presented on expanded after-hours mental health coverage.


Resolution on travel ban

In the aftermath of President Donald Trump’s executive order, the University has released a series of statements on the impact it has had on the Stanford community. Both the Undergraduate Senate and the GSC unanimously passed the joint resolution, which calls on the University to make the repeal of the order “an active and visible priority.”


Joint fees for student groups

Voluntary student associations (VSOs) had the option in the past of applying for joint fees from both the graduate and undergraduate programming budgets. Under the joint fees process, each VSO needed to have its request for fees voted for by the undergraduate and graduate students. Acknowledging low graduate student turnout for elections, the new application process will have groups apply separately for undergraduate and graduate special fees.

The GSC will meet later in the week to finalize the process. Groups that currently receive joint fees have already been notified about potential changes.


CAPS expands coverage

CAPS will be collaborating with Protocol, a company providing after-hours coverage for 170 other colleges and universities, to provide 24/7 mental health services at Stanford. An overstretched 30-person staff and a lack of budget increases for the last nine years has made handling an increasing volume of after-hours calls difficult for CAPS. Albucher anticipates that the collaboration will free up more CAPS counselors during the day.

Education Ph.D. student Rosie Nelson asked about the diversity training that counselors working for Protocol have undergone. Training staff to be mindful of the needs of students from diverse backgrounds has been a challenge at Stanford in the last few years, Nelson added.    

Albucher commented that CAPS takes the issue of diversity seriously and has been communicating with Protocol about the culture and expectations of providing counseling at Stanford. As Protocol therapists are spread across three different call centers and may be licensed in several states, Albucher did not specify the kind of diversity training required for each Protocol therapist.

An open meeting with representatives from Protocol will be held on Feb. 13 at 5:15 p.m. at the Vaden Health Center.


Contact Miguel Samano at msamano ‘at’

Miguel Samano is an opinions editor majoring in Comparative Literature and Chicanx-Latinx Studies. He loves sleeping, drinking night coffee, seeking out new books to read, and eating tacos with friends.

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