Care Team

Assisting Students in Crisis

The Student Affairs Care Team was formed to respond to students and their families in troubled times, providing administrative, and emotional support. The team is designed to respond quickly to a student experiencing a crisis that can benefit from a rapid and coordinated response from campus resources. The Cal Poly Care Team is chaired by the Dean of Students and has representatives from University Housing, Health and Counseling Services, University Police Department, the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities, and Disability Resource Center.

The Care Team meets regularly to implement swift, effective and accurate communication among University personnel and can serve as a consultative team of student affairs professionals to assist faculty with concerns regarding student distress.

The literature on student transition to college, and subsequent academic success, suggests that students experience a common set of feelings at one time or another, such as homesickness, isolation, mild depression, and a desire for connection and a sense of affiliation with the university community. In addition, the ability to successfully navigate the ups and downs of university life is largely tied to a student's connection to at least one support person within the campus environment that may serve as a mentor or confidant during the transition period. We recognize that faculty often, and sometimes unknowingly, serve as that support person. Being aware of the signs of students in distress, and the resources available to faculty, are critical to early student intervention. Some signs of distress are: depression, inability to concentrate, confusion, persistent worrying, social isolation, increased irritability, bizarre behavior, missed classes/assignments, sudden failing grades, procrastination, dangerous behavior, restlessness, disheveled appearance, mood swings, and indecisiveness.

As faculty, you are encouraged to contact the chair of the Care Team, Dr. Kathleen McMahon when you become aware of a student in crisis, and/or would like guidance in responding to a student. You may also schedule a time to meet directly with the Care Team to discuss a student's situation.

Useful Links

Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities
Care Team
Hunger Program
Health and Counseling Services
University Police Department
Title IX
Dean on Call

The Dean of Students Office Dean On Call Program provides faculty and staff with a 24/7 contact to assist with urgent concerns, or emergency and crisis situations impacting the student community. 

Required Reporting
As faculty, you are encouraged to contact the Dean of Students, Dr. Kathleen McMahon...

Dr. Kathleen McMahon
Dean of Students
Division of Student Affairs
Building 52, Room E11
E-mail: Phone: 805-756-0327



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