Health and Wellness
Good physical and mental health can lead to a more productive and enjoyable college experience. At PennWest California, we care about your wellbeing. Trained professionals are available to respond to your health and wellness needs, and to guide you toward a healthful lifestyle.
Find information for:
- Student Health Center
- Counseling Center
- Dean of Students
- California Campus Drug Free Schools and Communities Act Information
- Global Online Drug Free Schools and Communities Act Information
The Student Health Center on the ground floor of Carter Hall is staffed by a medical director, nurse supervisor, certified registered nurse practitioner and registered nurses.
The health center provides quality health care for students. Healthcare professionals at the center can direct students to other healthcare providers when necessary, work with special populations to address their specific needs, and develop and deliver health and wellness education programs.
Student Health Center
Carter Hall G-53
8 a.m. - 7 p.m. Monday - Friday
To gain entrance to the Health Center call
In case of an emergency after hours, call 911 or Public Safety 724-938-4299
Services at the Health Center include, but are not limited to:
- Assessment/diagnosis and treatment.
- Limited physicals.
- Urgent, emergent care and stabilization.
- Referrals to outside agencies, such as specialists, emergency room, Med Express or outpatient testing, as needed.
- Allergy injections. (We will keep your allergy serum.)
- Depo Provera injections.
- Rapid strep test.
- Urine screening.
- Women's Health Clinic services.
- Education for healthy lifestyles.
- TB Testing.
- Limited Laboratory testing.
Student Health Insurance
Good health is an integral part of your PennWest California experience. Although health insurance is not required for your visit to the University Health Center, PennWest California strongly recommends that all students have medical insurance coverage.
The campus Health Center offers a variety of healthcare services for PennWest California students, but it does not have any contracts for direct payment to any health insurance companies for clinic or ancillary services, and it does not bill any insurance companies directly.
You are responsible for paying all bills for clinic visits, medications, lab work and certain procedures that you may need outside of the PennWest California Health Center.
If you are not currently covered by a health insurance plan, it is recommended that you visit Healthcare.gov to explore your options for coverage on the insurance marketplace.
The Counseling Center advises students on ways to make the best personal, social, psychological and career choices during a time of transition in their lives. Counseling can be very helpful in identifying challenges and obstacles, brainstorming solutions, and working towards personal growth.
Please note: The Counseling Center is not available during PennWest California's summer sessions; regular hours resume at the start of the fall semester. If you need help finding a therapist in your local area during times when the counseling center is closed, contact Rachel Michaels, Associate Director for Wellness, at email@example.com.
FOR MENTAL HEALTH EMERGENCIES: Dial 911 or your local emergency number; call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-8255; text HOME to the National Crisis Text Line at 741-741, or visit your local hospital's emergency room. More hotlines and other resources are listed below. Pennsylvania residents can find a county-by-county list of crisis intervention services here.
To learn more about the counseling center or to request an appointment, please click
The mission of the Counseling Center is to enhance the academic experience at PennWest California by fostering students' personal development, thereby enabling them to attain their personal and academic goals while evidencing integrity, civility and responsibility. To accomplish this mission, the Counseling Center faculty provide quality university level, developmentally focused psychological services for students and provide consultation and education services to the campus community.
- Hours: 8 a.m.-4 p.m. Monday-Friday (fall and spring semesters)
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Counseling Center: 724-938-4056
- Emergency Contacts: Public Safety, 724-938-4357 (HELP) or 9-1-1
- Hotlines and Other Resources
- PLEASE NOTE: Counseling Center faculty emails are not monitored 24/7. If you are in need of immediate emergency assistance, please call 911, PennWest California Public Safety @ 724-938-HELP or go to your nearest emergency room.
Click here for a full list of crisis resources by county in Pennsylvania
The Counseling Center is staffed by licensed professionals who aim to help students overcome personal issues and stressful situations such as:
- Relationship distress.
- Academic difficulties.
- Adjustment disorders.
- Acute trauma.
You can feel comfortable about coming to the Counseling Center. Services are strictly confidential according to state and federal law, and there is no additional charge to PennWest California University students.
Services provided in the PennWest California Counseling Center include:
- Psychological consultation. You may visit the Counseling Center for a psychological consultation or short-term counseling, a referral to a long-term treatment provider, or information about other helpful resources. Services are confidential; visit the center or call 724-938-4056 for an appointment.
- Crisis intervention. If you need help during a crisis, simply walk in to the Counseling Center during regular hours for an emergency psychological evaluation, or call to request a consultation with one of the center's therapists. After hours, call the California University Police Department at 724-938-4357 (HELP) for emergency assistance.
The Associate Director for Wellness offers case management and assistance for all university students seeking guidance and support both on and off campus. All students who wish to meet with a campus counselor will first meet with the Associate Director for Wellness for a consultation prior to a counseling appointment. In addition, general consultation services are offered for all staff and faculty in regard to students of concern.
Possible areas of support include, but are not necessarily limited to the following:
- Students experiencing an acute crisis or who are in a situation that is greatly impacting the student’s ability to successfully engage in daily activities.
- Students who require information or guidance to navigate university and/or community resources.
- Faculty and staff whom are concerned about a student and would like some additional expertise or guidance.
Contact the Associate Director for Wellness, Rachel Michaels, at Michaels_r@pennwest.edu for more information.
Health promotions is an all-encompassing wellness office that helps provide campus resources, education, and programming in relation to college health and wellness. Students who participate in health promotions programs have the opportunity to learn about the importance of health lifestyles, healthy decision making, and about mental and physical health.
- Annual Health Fair
- Alcohol and other drug education
- Alcohol and other drug code of conduct violation programs
- Sexual health programming
- Men and women’s health programming
- The Prevention Awareness Recovery Center (PARC)
- Information about local AA/NA meetings
- Substance use support groups on campus
- Mental wellness programming
- Associate Director for Wellness – 8am-4pm Monday through Friday
- Recovery Center – open 24/7 during spring and fall semesters
Class absences for medical reasons:
Class absences are excused for medical reasons documented by medical personnel, university activities approved by the appropriate vice president or designee, and/or for personal exigencies, as defined by the faculty member. Activities to be recognized as an excused absence include but are not limited to: scheduled athletic competitions; academic competitions in which the student is a participant; military duties; auto accidents; death of an immediate family member; and medical emergencies. Verification of such absences may be required by the instructor, and the student is responsible for make-up work as required by the instructor.
Students with excused absences are permitted to make up missed work and are responsible for all missed assignments without penalty. In cases where there have been significant absences, the student should consult with the instructor and academic adviser to determine if completion of course requirements is possible or reasonable.
(see full class attendance policy) Policy AC013: Class Attendance (pennwest.edu)
Class withdrawals for medical reasons:
Any student (undergraduate or graduate), who decides to withdraw from the University during any academic term, regardless of the reason (including medical), must contact the Office of the Registrar immediately. email@example.com
A university withdrawal beyond the last day to withdraw deadline may be requested to the academic dean for extenuating circumstances (e.g., illness, family tragedy) up through the last instructional day of the semester or term. Such requests must be made in writing to the academic dean over the student’s program (major) and include an explanation as to why the withdrawal did not occur by the deadline, and documentation of the extenuating circumstance(s).
(see full class withdrawal policy) Withdrawals and Refunds | PennWest California (calu.edu)