UH Hilo Care Team

UH Hilo Care Team

Supporting Students During Covid-19: University and Community Resources for UH Hilo Students

If you need to report an emergency, call UH Hilo Campus Security at (808) 974-7911.

Care Team Purpose

Students experience a wide-range of challenges and adjustments while attending college. As students are adapting to these changes there are times at which severe stress may result in distress or disruptive behavior.

The UH Hilo Care Team is a multi-disciplinary team who receives referrals about students whose behavior raises significant concerns and reasonably suggests that the behavior, physical and/or emotional state:

  • Presents safety issues for the student or others; or
  • May hinder the student’s ability to meet expected standards of conduct or achieve academic requirements; or
  • May be evidence of severe emotional distress

You may make a referral to the Care Team by completing the online reporting form or by contacting Tim Moore , Interim Dean of Students, at (808) 932-7610.

If there is an imminent threat of danger or an emergency please contact Campus Security at (808) 974-7911

When cases are referred to the Care Team, the team will assess the situation and develop a plan to provide supportive intervention services to help the student meet expected standards of conduct and to avoid the situation escalating to crisis level. It is important to share as much information as possible in submitting a care team referral, including steps taken to address the situation you are reporting; specific responses/behaviors from the student; communication chains (as appropriate); and any other specific information that can help the team mitigate the concern(s) being reported.

Please note that many times the student can be assisted with direct referrals to other offices for assistance. A helpful resource guide can be found at Campus and Community Resources including the UH Hilo Student Emergency Fund and program overview. However, when in doubt, always refer.

Behaviors of Concern

Signs that a student may be in distress and warrant a referral to the Care Team may occur in the following ways:


The student’s conduct is clearly and imminently reckless, disorderly, dangerous, or threatening including self-harm behavior.


Call 911 or Campus Police.

The student shows signs of distress but I am unsure how serious it is. My interaction has left me feeling uneasy and/or really concerned about the student.

Consult with and/or refer to the Counseling Center.

I’m not concerned for the student’s immediate safety, but he or she is having significant academic and/or personal issues and could use some support or additional resources.

Refer students to an appropriate campus resource (if known) and/or submit a care referral (if not sure of the appropriate resource to refer a student to)


  • Communication that is threatening or suggests extreme distress
  • Academic work significantly deteriorates in quality
  • Pattern of missing assignments, appointments, or classes
  • Multiple requests for extensions, procrastination, excessive worrying/perfectionism


  • Marked deterioration of hygiene, appearance or dress
  • Appearance of intoxication or being under the influence of drugs while in class or other settings
  • References to suicide
  • Inability to communicate such as garbled, slurred, disjointed, or incoherent speech (or writing)


  • Threats to harm others or angry, or volatile behavior
  • Repeated and/or frequent displays of bizarre or unusual behavior
  • Angry outbursts/crying/extreme levels of disruptive activity or conversations
  • Withdrawal from friends, social groups, or disclosure of self-harm

Responding to a Disstressed or Disruptive Student

Student in Distress Response Protocol

Is the Student in Immediate Danger?


(e.g. the student has expressed thoughts of suicide or a plan to die by suicide)

No or Unsure?

(e.g. you notice a change in mood, appearance, or performance or a student shares with you that they are struggling with university-life and/or academic expectations)

  1. Listen to the student in a non-judgmental way and let them know you are there for support.
  2. Consult with the Associate Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs and Dean of Students at 808-932-7472 or submit an online referral to the Care Team.
  3. Refer to appropriate campus resources such as Counseling Services, Advising, Kilohana, etc.

Is the Student On-campus With You?


(stay with them and connect them with resources immediately by walking with them to Counseling Services (SSC E-203) or call Security for support at (808) 974-7911. Calling 911 is always an option as well.)


(Stay connected with them via phone and listen with compassion, letting them know you are there to support them while connecting them to available resources such as 911. If via email, see url for example.)

Always Refer Students who are in Distress to the Care Team

by calling (808) 932-7472 or submitting a care referral

All Disclosures for Title IX-Related Incidents Must be Reported

by calling 808-932-7641 or visiting Title IX

Quick Tips To Help a Student Who Is in Distress

  • Talk to the student in private when expressing your concerns or responding to theirs.
  • Remind students you can be private but not confidential.
  • Be honest and direct (“Are you under the influence of drugs or alcohol?” or “Are you thinking of hurting yourself or someone else?”)
  • Listen with compassion and sensitivity.
  • Be open-minded (to what the student is disclosing and ask yourself “what support do I need for myself?”)
  • Communicate “it takes courage & strength to seek support.”
  • Consult with administrator, Counseling Services, Care team coordinator, or Title IX Coordinator if unsure how to proceed.
  • Document and make a referral to the Care team.
  • Follow up. Reach out to the student soon after to check in with them.

Quick Tips To Help the Conversation With a Student Who Is in Distress

  • “Thanks for trusting me! It takes courage to seek support. How can I help?”
  • Thank you for sharing. There are some things I can keep private but not confidential.
  • “You don’t need to feel alone. Let me walk with you to Counseling Services.”
  • “University-life can be challenging; it should not be overwhelming. How can I help?”
  • “Sometimes when students are so overwhelmed, they want to end it all. Is that what you want to do?” *If you are concerned that a student may be thinking of suicide and do not feel comfortable asking this question, it’s OK! Just personally and immediately refer the student on to someone who can, such as Counseling Services .

“If you’d like to speak with someone who can keep everything confidential, I can connect you to Student Services - Counseling, Medical or a Confidential Advocate with Title IX1.”

The Family Rights and Privacy Act Privacy Act (FERPA) The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) permits communication about a student of concern in connection with a health and safety emergency. Observations of a student's conduct or statements made by a student are not FERPA protected. Such information should be shared with appropriate consideration for student privacy.

  1. Title IX = Prohibited conduct includes sex or gender-based discrimination, including discrimination based on sexual orientation, gender identity & expression, and nonconformity with sex stereotypes; sexual violence, including sexual assault; sexual harassment, dating and domestic violence, and stalking.