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Counseling and Mental Health

Many students have benefited from seeking support from the following places and resources.

Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS)

With offices on both the Evanston and Chicago campuses, Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) serves as the primary mental health care service for students. In addition to short term individual counseling, they offer educational workshops on topics such as stress management and sleep hygiene; Let's Talk drop in consultations; and group counseling. They also run support groups. If you need long-term individual counseling, CAPS will work with you to find a community resource that best fits your needs. To schedule a consultation or learn more about any of these services, please visit the CAPS website.

Crisis Support and Pastoral Care

Northwestern University chaplains and campus ministers are trained religious professionals on campus to serve the needs of students, faculty, and staff of any or no religious affiliation. They are available to discuss any issues, including relationships, feelings of guilt, and vocation and career choice. All conversations are held in confidence. The chaplains are equipped by training and experience in counseling. They are also able to refer to appropriate psychological or psychiatric resources if necessary.

Center for Awareness, Response & Education (CARE)

The mission of the Center for Awareness, Response & Education (CARE) is to provide information, advice, crisis counseling, support, advocacy, referrals, and education about sexual violence. If you or someone you know needs help, please visit the CARE website to learn more about their services and support.

Medical Leave of Absence (MLOA)

If you need time away from Northwestern to focus on treatment and recovery for a mental or physical health condition, you may request a Medical Leave of Absence from the Dean of Students Office. International students on a visa must have their leave approved by the International Office. You can apply for a MLOA at any time; however, in order for a MLOA to take effect during an ongoing quarter, the MLOA application must typically be submitted during the eighth week of classes by 5:00 PM on the dates listed.


TimelyCare is a free mental health app that provides access to virtual well-being resources, including scheduled counseling, the TalkNow on-demand service, health coaching, and group sessions. The TimelyCare app is available to all Northwestern students on the Chicago and Evanston campuses, including part-time, full-time, undergraduate, and graduate students. Visit for more information and to get started.