Make an Appointment

Welcome! Thank you for choosing CAPS for your care. CAPS provides short-term mental health services for enrolled students. When a student’s needs require a different level of care, CAPS works with students to transition care to community providers. If a student is currently seeing a professional for therapy and can continue to work with them, we often encourage the student to continue care with their current provider. 

The only way to initiate services at CAPS is by calling us at 703-993-2380 Monday to Friday from 8:30am to 4:00pm.

  • If this is your first time using CAPS services, you will need to call between 8:30am and 12pm Monday to Friday for an initial check in.
  • If you have previously used CAPS services and are interested in reconnecting with mental health support, you will also need to call between 8:30am and 12pm Monday to Friday for an initial check in.
  • If you are experiencing a crisis, please call us at 703-993-2380. If you are in crisis after our business hours or on weekends, please select option 1 in our phone system to be connected to an afterhours crisis counselor.

Step 1: Initial Check-In

Call CAPS at 703-993-2380 between 8:30am and 12pm Monday to Friday to complete an initial check-in. The drop-in clinic is first come first served, and our appointments for Initial Consultations (see step 2 below) are usually filled early. We encourage you to call our office earlier in the morning if possible as demand for services varies and spaces may become limited for a same day appointment. This is the first step in starting services with CAPS, or re-initiating services if you have been a previous client at CAPS. Our front desk staff will ask you for your name and G#. A counselor from CAPS call you back as soon as possible from a Mason number, or may call you from a blocked, private, or restricted number. The counselor will speak with you for a few minutes to obtain information on your current mental health needs and determine next steps for your care.

Step 2: Initial Consultation

The next step in our process is a brief consultation intended to assess your current mental health needs and get you connected with appropriate resources. You will be emailed paperwork to submit online before the appointment. This appointment will take place over Zoom Secure, an encrypted video platform. If you are not able to log on within 5 minutes of your appointment time, or do not have internet access, a counselor will call you instead.

You should plan to be in a private place for this appointment. During the 15-20 minute appointment, a CAPS Clinician will listen with care, consider your goals and obstacles you’re facing, discuss resources and therapy options, and collaboratively develop a plan to provide you with the support you need. These may include a recommendation to engage in group or individual counseling at CAPS, assistance in connecting with a community provider, and/or a referral for a psychiatric evaluation.

Please note: Students must be physically located in Virginia and have access to a private space with a secure internet connection at the time of receiving services. Students located outside of Virginia may still be supported with a case management appointment in order to try to connect you with a provider in your area.

After completing an Initial Consultation, the clinician you meet with will discuss next steps. Options for support may include: 

  1. Scheduling you for a longer intake appointment in order to receive time-limited individual therapy services at CAPS. We offer this in person and virtually. 
  2. Participation in other services offered through CAPS including group therapy, virtual skills-based workshops, online self-help, time-limited psychiatry, and learning services.
  3. Referrals to off-campus treatment in which case your clinician will help you find appropriate, affordable, and accessible treatment provider(s). 
  4. Consultation with a different office on campus such as Student Support and Advocacy, Disability Services, and Student Health Services.

CAPS provides training for doctoral-level interns and externs, so you may work with a clinician who is under the supervision of a licensed clinical staff member at CAPS. We are glad that you are exploring options for assistance. Please contact us if you have any additional questions or concerns. 

*Please note, if you are concerned about your ability to keep yourself or others safe or are currently experiencing significant emotional distress, we encourage you to contact CAPS Monday through Friday between the hours of 8:30 am and 4:00 pm for a same day Crisis Consultation with an on-call clinician.  You may also access CAPS after normal business hours by calling our main number at 703-993-2380 and select option 1, in order to speak with a crisis counselor.