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Dean of the College

Vassar College


  • Initiate conversation
    • Express gratitude for student showing up to this meeting (“glad to see you”), express understanding that it can be hard to uphold meetings (student has missed previous meetings), ask if there’s anything going on that they want to talk about that’s made it hard to come to meetings
  • Describe observations, express feelings
  • Ask open questions


  • Provide empathy and validation
  • Normalize and reduce stigma
  • Ask what kind of support they would like (problem-solving, listening, referrals)


  • Want to make sure to submit SSN form
  • Suggest reaching out to Class Dean for overarching academic support
  • If need support in specific classes, suggest Academic Support & Learning Resources (Writing Center and Quantitative Reasoning Center)


  • Explore cultural context
  • Family relationships/expectations
  • Urgency of necessary academic connections
  • Look at busy academic times—common to come up when exams start, NRO period, etc