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Hamel Health and Counseling Center

Why Counseling?

The purpose of Counseling Services is to help students cope with stressful situations that arise during the college experience. The goal of Counseling Services is to allow for students to enhance their experience at Merrimack and maximize their potential as students and members of the community.

Meeting with a counselor can bring and develop perspective and introduce coping skills, whether adjusting to your new independence, learning how to cope with stress, learning how to deal with a traumatic event, how to handle relationships with others, how to manage change, or how to gain a better understanding of your world. 

Common Issues Addressed: A-Z

Academic Stress, Adjustment, ADD/ADHD, Alcohol Use, Athletic Performance, Anger, Anxiety, Body Image, Cultural Issues, Depression, Discrimination, Disordered Eating, Divorce. Eating Disorders, Family Issues, Financial Hardship, Friendships, Grief/Loss, Graduation, Happiness, Identity, Illness, Injury, Isolation, LGBTQ issues, Medication, Mental Illness, Relationships, Roommates, Safety, Self-Injury, Sexuality, Sexual Assault, Substance Abuse, Suicide, Time Management, Transitions, Wellness, Worry

Counseling Staff

The Counseling staff is comprised of 3 full-time and 1 part-time counselors, all of whom are licensed mental health professionals. The Office Manager handles scheduling appointments for all health and counseling staff.

Short-term, individual counseling 

Counseling Services uses a short-term therapy model, focusing on assessment, intervention, problem-solving, and support. The length of counseling sessions and the frequency of sessions vary; some students may find one - three sessions to be beneficial, while others may prefer to meet throughout a semester. 

Some students have behavioral health issues that are better addressed with a specialist or through long-term therapy; some students prefer to see a provider off-campus. In these instances, the discussion would involve a referral to a community provider.

All students and situations are unique; the initial meeting allows the student and clinician to determine what would be most beneficial. 

Local Referrals

If you are interested in seeing a local provider, we have a listing of psychotherapists, specialists, group therapy options, outpatient services, and specialty resources. Feel free to contact us at any time to request information or discuss options.  


Ethical and legal considerations prohibit us from sharing any information about a student’s counseling sessions without expressed written consent (this includes parents, professors, coaches, roommates, friends, significant others, etc.). Confidentiality is absolutely necessary for a trusting and effective counseling relationship. All meetings with a counselor are protected by confidentiality. What is shared between a client and counselor is considered protected and cannot and will not be shared unless there is an expressed request by the student or an emergent safety concern. 


During business hours, a counselors are available for crisis assessment or consultation. Call 978-837-5441 for immediate assistance. When you call, you will be asked if you would like to speak with the counselor-on-call immediately, receive a call back within 2 hours, or receive a call back before the end of the day.

Students may also walk into the Center for urgent matters. 

After regular business hours, on weekends, and on holidays, a counselor-on-call is accessible to triage crisis situations by phone. The counselor is accessed by speaking with a Residence Life staff member or by calling Campus Police Services x5911. The counselor will return your call in a timely manner to discuss the circumstances.


At any time, faculty, staff, parents, or administrators are encouraged to contact Counseling Services to discuss concerns for a student at any time. You are always welcome to accompany a student into the Center.


If you have concern about a medical, mental health or safety issue that cannot or should not wait, please call Campus Police at x5911, dial 911, or go directly to the nearest emergency room.