Syllabi Statements about Mental Health Support and Trigger Warnings

Mental Health Support Statement

Many faculty members may choose to recognize the unique difficulties presented by mental health conditions that may not result in disability, but do impact the student’s experience, through a statement such as the following (created by UNC Asheville staff and faculty, particularly Lyndi Hewitt, Melissa Himelein and Jordan Perry):

As a student, you may experience a range of challenges that can interfere with learning, such as stressful life events, experiences of anxiety and/or depression, self-harm, substance use, and/or unusual difficulty with ordinary life activities. The increased stress of school can also make existing mental health struggles more difficult to manage. Support is available and treatment can help. Learn more about the confidential mental health services UNC Asheville provides to support student success at

The Health and Counseling Center is located at 118 W.T. Weaver Boulevard. Appointments can be made by calling 828-251-6520. A UNC Asheville counselor on call is available after 5 p.m. and on weekends; the counselor on call can be accessed by calling the UNCA Campus Police dispatcher at 828-251-6710. Additionally available after hours and on weekends, call the Bulldog Health Link at 1-888-267-3675, where you can get immediate support for mental health, medical consultation, concern for a friend, and/or community resources. In case of an emergency, you can also call RHA’s Mental Health Mobile Crisis Unit at 1-888-573-1006.


Statement on Trigger Warnings (alternately referred to as “Content Note” or “Content Advisory”)

A “trigger warning” is a warning given with the intention of advising people who have experienced serious trauma in their past that the material (readings, viewings, class discussions, etc.) they are about to encounter may have the potential to raise, or trigger, some of that latent trauma. While I believe a certain degree of intellectual and, in some cases, emotional discomfort is productive to growth in an educational setting, it is my goal to help you avoid feeling activated or re-traumatized through your encounters with the class material or discussions. Because this course deals with a diverse range of human experiences, many of which are disturbing or painful, and since there is no way to know precisely which issues will be potentially triggering for which students, I invite you to be aware of the possibility of triggers throughout the semester and to take the necessary measures to care for yourself and your fellow students when/if you feel triggered (e.g., step out of the classroom, choose not to speak that day, talk with me privately, ask me for or seek out your own resources to help you process, etc.).