Thank you for taking an interest in the health and well-being of UW-Milwaukee students. Below you will find a variety of resources you can use or reference to support students.

For Faculty/Staff

The Red Folder: Your Online Guide to Students in Distress

The Red Folder initiative is a guide to help UWM faculty, staff and other community members to recognize, respond effectively to, and refer distressed students.

This website is intended to help you to connect students with the most appropriate support resources, however you may also contact the Student Health and Wellness Center counseling staff for guidance and consultation. Visit the red folder website to learn more.

Recognize the signs or indications that students may be in distress.
How to respond to signs of distress.
Consider the situation and determine the appropriate next steps and appropriate available resources.

Suicide Prevention Training

The University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee has implemented a new Faculty/Staff Suicide Prevention Training called Recoginzie, Respond, Refer. This new, two-part approach focuses on how to connect with and refer students in distress to local, regional, and national resources available for them. For more information, visit our Suicide Prevention Training Page.

UW-System’s Recognize, Respond, Refer: Suicide Prevention Training for Faculty and Staff, an asynchronous online training builds awareness, knowledge, and skills about mental health and suicide prevention. The training requires approximately 45 minutes to complete. 
Register for the online training
This 75-minute in-person discussion session builds on the foundational online training by focusing on skills-based practice, scenario discussions, and campus-specific resource/referral information. Time for Q&A is also included. 
Register for an in-person discussion session

10 Simple Ways to Support Students’ Mental Health

Faculty and staff can play a crucial part in supporting students’ mental health, which is important for student success. Check out the UWM Student Health and Wellness Center’s list of 10 Simple Ways to Support Students’ Mental Health and choose to do one today.

Alcohol and Other Drugs Misuse Prevention: How Faculty & Staff Can Help

Substance use among college students impacts all aspects of University life, including student well-being, the educational environment, the quality of life on and around campus, and the reputation of the institution. Moreover, excessive drinking and drug use are associated with short-term academic problems (e.g., missing class, and less time spent studying) and with degree completion. Reducing excessive and underage drinking and other drug use among students is a worthwhile and viable strategy for improving academic performance and retention. This can have a profound impact on the long-term success of our students.

Be Proactive

As a faculty or staff member at UWM, you are in a position to make a difference because you can positively influence students’ decisions about substance use in a variety of ways.

  1. Highlight the connection between academic success and substance use in conversations with students.
  2. Hold quizzes, exams, classes, deadlines, and office hours on Fridays to deter students from drinking or using earlier in the week.
  3. Make attendance part of the grade.
  4. Avoid normalizing substance use: avoid jokes or glorified stories about substance use.
  5. Don’t hold classes or meetings in a bar.
  6. Set expectations for your students. Include a statement in your syllabus regarding substance use (e.g. don’t come to class under the influence, no vaping in class).
  7. If you plan to be away (e.g. at a conference), invite a guest speaker on alcohol and other drugs, rather than canceling the class.
Be Responsive

You may be in a position to notice potential warning signs of a drinking or drug use problem. You are not expected to diagnose, but you can share your concerns with the student and refer them to campus resources for support.


Recognize potential warning signs of substance use issues. Multiple signs and a pattern of behavior may indicate a serious problem.

  • Deterioration in work/academic performance
  • Increased tardiness or absences
  • Multiple requests for extensions on assignments
  • Mood changes such as temper flare-ups, irritability, and defensiveness
  • Physical or mental indicators such as memory lapses, lack of personal hygiene, bloodshot eyes, lack of coordination or slurred speech
  • Disclosure, by a student, that there might be a drinking or drug problem


It is important not to ignore the signs. You can present your concerns in such a way that they might see things more clearly and get the help they need.

  • Consult, if necessary, to determine whether you are the best person to approach the student and discuss a plan. A supervisor, department chair, the Campus AOD Coordinator or Counseling Services are options.
  • Ask the student for permission to share a concern with them.
  • Describe in a specific and non-judgmental way, the behavior/signs that concern you. Frame your thoughts from a place of concern, and with the best interest of the student’s well-being and academic success in mind.
  • Invite the student to respond to your concerns by asking what they think.


Have a few resources for the student to choose from, in case they’re ready to get help.

  • Make a referral to campus resources for Students located at the top of the page.
  • Express and respect the student’s autonomy and right to decide.
  • Follow-up to see how things are going for the student and whether the referral was helpful.
Additional Tips and Strategies

Check out this brief Tips for More Effective AOD Conversations with students.

For additional information on Alcohol and Other Drugs support for students, visit our AOD page.

Sexual and Relationship Violence Prevention: How Faculty/Staff Can Help 

Sexual and relationship violence is a pervasive part of our society and it is not uncommon for UWM students to be impacted by it. As a faculty/staff member, you can help by learning about the resources available to support students, how to respond to students who disclose to you, and about simple ways you can help intervene when you witness situations involving sexual or relationship violence. 

Responding to Disclosures 
Faculty and staff should be familiar with their responsibilities when a student discloses sexual or relationship violence. To learn more, visit Title IX Information for Employees Receiving a Disclosure. View additional guidance on how to respond in a compassionate and supportive way. These are UWM resources you can refer students to: 

Get Involved with Prevention 
You may participate in the You Can Help! Prevent Sexual and Relationship Violence bystander intervention training

Mandatory Training 
UWM and the Universities of Wisconsin have prioritized sexual harassment and sexual violence prevention and currently require all new students and employees to complete training on these topics. These online trainings provide information about UWM policies and expectations that are based on state and federal laws. They facilitate learning and reflection on these issues, which contributes to a safer and supportive UWM community for all our members. For more information, visit the Title IX Sexual Violence Prevention Online Mandatory Training page

For Parents

The Student Health and Wellness Center (SHAW) offers a variety of resources to support student emotional well-being needs. From self-care to crisis support, we are here for your students!

General Forms and FAQs

Student Health and Wellness Center Information
Will my student need insurance to visit the Student Health and Wellness Center?

No. UWM Student Health and Wellness Center (SHAW) does not bill insurance. Students may take receipts from a SHAW visit and submit them to their private insurance for reimbursement if desired. 

Will I be notified if my student attends the Student Health and Wellness Center?

No. The UWM Student Health and Wellness is completely confidential for the students to use. 

Is my student eligible for services at the Student Health and Wellness Center?

Students who take classes online or at the UWM main campus, who pay mandatory segregated fees, have access to services at the Student Health and Wellness Center.

For more in-depth information, including potential costs of visits, visit our eligibility and cost page.

Can my student be prescribed medical or psychiatric medication at the Student Health and Wellness Center?

Yes. There is an on-site dispensary that will fill medications prescribed by the medical providers at SHAW. 

Medical FAQs

Can my student transfer outstanding prescriptions to the Student Health and Wellness Center?

No. Only medications prescribed by the providers at the SHAW Center can be filled at our in-house dispensary. If there is a need to fill medications from an outside provider, or if we do not carry the medication the student needs, prescriptions can be sent to local pharmacies.

Is the Student Health and Wellness Center accredited?

Yes. UWM Student Health and Wellness Center is accredited through the Accreditation Association for Ambulatory Health Care (AAAHC). This certifying body recognizes institutions that satisfy requirements and demonstrates its commitment to high-quality care and patient safety. 

What are the recommended vaccines/boosters my student should have before attending UWM?

There are no required immunizations to attend UWM, however, we highly recommend that you are up to date on your immunizations including the COVID-19 vaccines as well as the annual flu vaccine.

Every year Wisconsin colleges and universities are required by state statute to provide all enrolled students with detailed information about meningococcal disease and Hepatitis B, including data about the availability and effectiveness of vaccines against these diseases.

Information about the disease and vaccination can be found at and

Counseling FAQs

Can my student continue seeing their counselor outside of the Student Health and Wellness Center?

No. Therapists are unable to continue to see students in the community either personally or professionally through a private practice. 

I’m concerned about my student, what are my options?

If you are concerned about your student, Counseling offers consultation services to family, faculty, or staff.  Please contact 414-229-7429 (option 2) and ask to speak to the therapist on call. 

Health Promotion FAQs

How can my student learn about campus health events and tips?

Students can visit our online calendar for upcoming health and wellness events at SHAW or around campus: Online Calendar

Students can view our menu of wellness programs, request a program for their student group, or sign themselves up for pre-scheduled programs: Menu of Wellness Programs

Finally, our SHAW Instagram account is another great place to learn about health tips and events at UWM and in the Milwaukee community: Instagram

What resources are available for my student if they are stressed out?

It’s normal for students to experience varying levels of stress and other emotions throughout the academic year.  The Student Health and Wellness Center offers a broad menu of wellness programs and events to strengthen students’ ability to cope with stress. In addition, students can choose from a wide range of emotional well-being resources, including talking with a professional counselor. 

I’m concerned about my student’s drug/alcohol usage, what resources are available?

If you are concerned about your student’s use of alcohol or other drugs, please do not ignore it. Heavy drinking or drug misuse can result in serious health, safety, interpersonal, academic, and legal issues. Bring up your specific concerns with your student in a respectful, caring, and non-judgmental manner. You can refer them to the alcohol and other drug resources available to students at the Student Health and Wellness Center. 

Survivor Support and Victim Advocacy

My student told me they’ve been a victim of sexual violence, what kind of support is available to them?

The Student Health and Wellness Center employs a Survivor Support and Victim Advocacy Coordinator, who works with students who are victims of sexual violence, relationship violence, human trafficking, and more. Visit our Survivor Support and Victim Advocacy page to learn more, and to find available resources.