Psychological Services

We live in a society in which we frequently encounter demands and pressures that negatively impact our sense of well-being and our ability to function at our best. As a student, you are not immune to such pressures, and may occasionally benefit from the services of our psychological counseling staff. We are available to help you understand and cope with issues such as self-esteem, self-direction, anxiety, depression, motivation, and loss. We can help you learn how to handle relationship difficulties with loved ones, friends, or family, and conflicts with your peers.

Services are free to all registered students and completely confidential.

Services Provided for Students

Individual Therapy

Why do people usually seek therapy?

People ask for our help:

  • when feelings of depression get them down
  • when anxiety gets in the way of concentrating and studying
  • when relationships with loved ones have more conflict than peace
  • when anger about discrimination is too much to bear
  • when reality and fantasy become confused
  • when using alcohol or drugs has gotten to be too much
  • when they feel like they'd really like to kill themselves or somebody else
  • when uncertain what academic path would bring true satisfaction
  • when needing to recover from trauma that happened long ago
  • when wanting to learn how to speak up for themselves

These are just a few of the reasons that students like yourself have decided to call Psychological Services to request therapy. Our quality assurance surveys show that the overwhelming majority of students who use our services experience significant relief and newfound direction.

Our permanent staff consists entirely of Ph.D.-level psychologists with several years of clinical experience, all licensed by the State of California. (Our unit is also a training site for doctoral students in their last year of preparation for the Ph.D.)

Why, you may wonder, does the university provide such an important and vital service? Because we directly support the University Mission by empowering you to resolve personal issues, you are freed to focus effectively on your academic goals, and to benefit from all that CSUDH has to offer. We invite you to use our services.

Do I have to be in Psychological Services?

No. Please call the psychological services office immediately if you are in crisis; we will do everything we can to help you. But, don't think that you have to be in crisis to use our services. In fact, our therapists advise that you come in to talk long before problems erupt into a crisis.

What about confidentiality? Who will know what?

You can be assured that everything you tell your therapist will be completely private and confidential, and will not be revealed or released to anyone outside of the counseling office (on- or off-campus) without your written consent, unless it is necessary to prevent injury to yourself or others, or as otherwise required by law. We encourage you to discuss any concerns you have about confidentiality or privacy in your first visit with your therapist. All psychological counselors at CSUDH take their ethical and legal obligation to maintain confidentiality very seriously.

Is there a fee for psychological services?

No. The fees you pay for tuition and student activities allow you to utilize the psychological counseling services here on campus. Although these services would cost between $75 and $125 or more per session outside of campus, they are provided to currently enrolled students at no charge.

However, if you are an Extended Education student, there will be a $15.00 initial consultation-intake visit fee. Each additional visit will cost $5.00.

How long does a typical session last?

Individual therapy sessions are typically held for 45 minutes once a week.

How will I know what to talk about in sessions?

There are no specific criteria for what or how to talk about your issues in session. Most therapists would probably agree that the more you participate, the more you can expect to gain from the experience. All of the psychological staff at CSUDH believe that it is important for the client to feel comfortable and safe in counseling, and want you to be the judge of how much you will share, about what, with whom and when.

What if I don't feel comfortable with a particular therapist?

Sometimes you may feel it is important to speak to someone of a particular gender, cultural, or ethnic background. If you feel uncomfortable with a therapist for any reason, please discuss this with him or her for a possible referral. You have a right to feel comfortable with the therapist you choose. Our staff will honor and appreciate your honest and direct feedback.

Counseling seems like such a cloudy thing. How can I tell if I have actually benefited?

By the end of your sessions, you might be less upset, more in charge of your life, and have more satisfying relationships with friends and family. And when your relationships are smoother, you will probably have more energy and focus to accomplish the things you want and need.

Workshops and Presentations

Psychological Services staff are available to do presentations on a variety of mental health topics. Examples include stress management, healthy self esteem, diversity & multicultural issues, and dealing with grief and loss. If there's a topic you'd like a presentation on, let us know and we'll see if we can accommodate you.

Group support workshops are available throughout the year. The Fall 2019 support groups will meet in the lobby of Psychological Services (unless otherwise indicated) and are as follows:

  • Dating & Relationships: Facilitated by Dr. Bruce Wallace and Dr. Normal Quintero. This ten-week group is designed to offer support to students regarding dating relationships. Group members will learn effective communication techniques, differences between healthy and unhealthy relationships, tools to establish and maintain connections, and skills to manage heartbreak. Fall 2019 dates: Tuesdays, beginning September 10, from 2:30 to 3:30 p.m.
  • Managing Your Anxiety: Facilitated by Dr. Suzanne Herschenhorn, a series of 4-WORKSHOPS using, art, neuroscience, self-regulation, and strategies for managing anxiety. These workshops will help you to understand the basic physiology of anxiety (signs/symptoms; how it manifests in the body and mind). You will recognize your individual signs/symptoms and triggers. Lastly, you learn to manage your anxiety using effective strategies such as art, breathing/relaxations, visulaization, mindfulness, and tapping (Meridian-Based EFT: Emotional Freedom Techniques)Fall 2019 dates: Fridays, TBD and will be located in the Loker Student Union.
  • MOM's Support Group: Facilitated by Dr. Katie Johnson, this weekly support group will provide a space to discuss the joys and challenges of raising children, attending school, and balancing life's responsiblities. Fall 2019 dates: Wednesdays, beginning September 18, from 9:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m.
  • T-Time: LGBTQIA+ Support Group: Facilitated by Dr. Sergio Mancilla, this weekly support group will provide a safe and confidential space for the LGBTQIA+ community to come together, share their stories, and support one another.  Fall 2019 dates: Wednesdays, beginning September 11, from 1:30 to 2:30 PM.
  • Home: Facilitated by Norma Quintero, Ph.D. and Arlin Gonzalez, M.Ed., this support group is designed to offer support to students affected by immigration laws, processes, political climate, and/or status.  This will be a confidential safe space to discuss your concerns, learn methods for self care, and provide you with resources to create an empowered community of support.  Fall 2019 dates: This group will meet in LSU 110A (TDSC) from 4:00 to 5:00 PM on the following dates:  September 10, October 1, October 22, November 12 and December 3.
  • Drop-in Group: Facilitated by Dr. Suzanne Herschenhorn, this support group is an opportunity to share with others and receive support on any issue or concern that you want to talk about. No sign-up or pre-registration required. Fall 2019 dates: Tuesdays, beginning September 3, from 1:00 to 2:00 p.m.
  • RIO: Recognition, Insight, Openness - Rio is a 3-week psycho-educational workshop series designed to help students learn quick and useful tools and develop a clearer sense of what they would like to change in their lives.  To participate in RIO you must be referred by a psychologists in Psychological ServicesFall 2019 dates/times: RIO will be offered several times a week during the semester.  Currently the dates times are:  Mondays at 1:30 p.m., Tuesdays at 1:30 p.m., Wednesdays at 11:00 a.m., Thursdays at 10:00 a.m. and Fridays at 11:00 a.m.

Presentations are offered in the Women's Resource Center and Career Center.

Pre-Doctoral Internship Program

** Not currently active **

Description of Training Program

Since 1987, CSUDH has served as a training site for graduate students who are working toward a doctoral degree in clinical psychology. Our training program is CAPIC-approved. Interns are provided supervised experience in clinical assessment, individual and group therapy, development of university outreach programs, and psychoeducational workshops. Licensed professionals provide experientially-based clinical training, using audio tape and individual and group supervision. Professional staff as well as interns present clinical cases in group supervision. Training seminars are provided monthly on various topics of interest to students and staff. The internship provides both short and longer term therapy experiences.


Candidates for the pre-doctoral internships must be fully enrolled in a doctoral program and have some supervised clinical experience. Ph.D. and Psy-D students with advanced doctoral training are preferred. CSUDH is rich in cultural diversity and non-traditional returning adult students. Interns need to have experience with and interest in working with culturally diverse populations.


This is a part-time paid internship with full benefits. Students are provided a private office with late model computers, printers, Internet, and email services. They are also afforded access to the CSUDH Library, sponsored attendance at professional conferences, parking privileges, vacations, and holidays. The internship typically begins late-August and runs through mid-June.


For questions about applications contact:

Janie MacHarg
Student Health Center Director
Student Health & Psychological Services
1000 E. Victoria Blvd.
Carson, CA 90747

(310) 243-3818

What To Do in Case of Emergencies

Please consult our Emergency page to contact the appropriate agency or authority.

Faculty and Staff Consultations

Faculty and staff are encouraged to contact us for individual consultations regarding issues with disturbed or disruptive students. We can help you to identify strategies for dealing with such situations, and provide you with referral resources as appropriate. We also encourage you to contact us if you feel you are the target of any kind of harassing, intimidating, or threatening behavior by any member of the campus community that is causing you emotional distress and/or concern for your safety. If, of course, you feel you are in any kind of immediate danger, you should contact the university police directly.

All consultations will be kept confidential, although in helping you to develop a plan of action, we may suggest involving other university departments (e.g. University Police, Faculty Affairs, Human Resources Management). In addition to individual consultations, we can arrange for presentations to be given to groups or departments on the following related topics:

  • Workplace Violence
  • Assisting Troubled Individuals

For more information, please contact:

Dr. Janie MacHarg
Director, Student Health & Psychological Services
(310) 243-3818

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