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Did you know that Webster University has expanded their Counseling Center to the public? We spoke with Catherine Butterly and Milena Claudius, two professors in the Counseling Department, about how the local community can benefit from currently enrolled students in the Master of Arts in Counseling degree fulfilling their internship hours. The Webster University Counseling Center invites English-speaking individuals who might have the need for these services but could not otherwise afford them to get in touch.

Who are the Trainee Counselors?
The profile of these student interns is mainly women; mostly in their 30’s, 40’s and older who are transitioning into a second career. Many are parents themselves. These students come from a variety of professional backgrounds such as lawyers, teachers, journalists, human resources, UN employees, NGOs, the corporate world and more. They have very valuable life experience, and this can be so important in understanding the challenges that their clients face. They are realistic, dedicated, and resourceful with a wide range of life skills.

Some have grown up in international, multilingual contexts, knowing first-hand the difficulties faced by individuals and families adjusting to a new country. All the counselors are passionate about supporting people in navigating difficult life transitions and creating meaningful change.

How it works
The Counselor's role is to listen and to respond with empathy and explore options to assist the client in making their lives more meaningful and manageable. Clients may present with a variety of issues:

  • life adjustments
  • social issues
  • loneliness
  • home sickness
  • relationships
  • exams
  • work stress
  • procrastination
  • sleep problems
  • low mood
  • grief and bereavement
  • identity issues
  • other

Clients from beyond the University will now have access to low budget support. A respectful and private exchange with another human being is one of the best ways to begin understanding oneself. Listening with respect and without judgement is rewarding to both parties. Sessions are offered on a weekly basis for an agreed-upon period of time.

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Cost
The Center is staffed by English-speaking Counselors in-training, who are supervised in follow-up meetings by registered professionals in this field. Confidentiality is strictly observed in the Counseling Center. The fee per 50-minute session is Fr. 25.-.

Languages
While the immediate plans are to provide a supportive space for English-speaking clients, in the future, the center hopes to make these services available in other languages as well. As the Counseling students are from many different countries, there is also a broad range of languages, and the Counseling Department is hopeful that services could eventually be offered in a range of languages.

Contact details
If you are interested, please schedule a first appointment by phone. The Counseling Center will gather some information about your reasons for seeking counseling and based on your needs, match you with one of the trainee counselors.

The sessions may take place in person or via teleconferencing to facilitate those living further afield. At the moment the Counseling interns work in Geneva, Basel, Bern, Zug, and Zurich.

Webster University Counseling Center
076 559 67 76 (call to make an appointment or send a message by WhatsApp)
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
www.webster.ch/currentstudents/counseling.php
Contact 9h-17h on weekdays.

The Webster University Geneva Counseling Center subscribes to codes of ethics based on the Swiss Association for Counseling (SGFB) and the American Association of Counseling (ACA).