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Building on its commitment to protecting students’ well-being and mental health, The College of Saint Rose has partnered with Pinnacle Behavioral Health in Albany to offer comprehensive, long-term mental health counseling and medication management. This partnership greatly increases and enhances the on-campus counseling services previously available to students.

Until now, each student was limited to eight counseling sessions with on-campus staff (with the exception of individuals in high-risk situations). For further treatment, including medication management, counselors had to refer students to outside providers. Bringing Pinnacle’s extensive pool of counseling and psychiatric staff on site allows students to continue receiving treatment beyond the eight sessions. Students also can receive counseling at Pinnacle’s office when the College is not in session.

“By creating a link to Pinnacle staff on campus, students can have continued care during their academic careers, all year long and after they graduate,” said Sabrina Balbuena, associate director of counseling and administration at Saint Rose.

One in five adults in the United States experiences mental illness, according to the National Alliance on Mental Illness, and young adults in college can undergo overwhelming amounts of stress from social and academic pressures, relationships, homesickness, and drug and alcohol use. In addition, levels of anxiety and depression are rising on college campuses, according to the 2017 survey of nearly 150 U.S. colleges and universities conducted by Penn State’s Center for Collegiate Mental Health. The survey concluded that, while counseling is effective, schools must have adequate treatment capacity to effectively help students.

Teaming with Pinnacle is the second large step that Saint Rose has taken recently to safeguard students’ mental health, following a partnership with JED Campus Program, a national program aimed at identifying opportunities to enhance emotional health and substance abuse and suicide prevention efforts on campus, last November.

“We are hopeful that these additional services can support students toward their academic success and overall health,” said Balbuena. Students’ healthcare insurors will be billed for the service, and students will be responsible for co-payments, but Pinnacle accepts many insurance policies and helps clients resolve any insurance issues.

To learn more contact: Sabrina Balbuena at 518-454-5298 or