The Counseling Center provides counseling services free of charge to full-time undergraduate traditional day, Adult Studies, Accelerated BSN, and graduate students. The center is staffed by four licensed professional counselors and master’s level interns. The counselors offer group and individual counseling designed to help students develop their full potential and overcome obstacles related to their educational or personal growth. Some of the reasons students seek or are referred for counseling include problems relating to adjustment issues, relationship difficulties, concerns about mood, self-esteem and self-concept issues, and drug and alcohol issues. The counselors, upon request, provide outreach programs in the residence halls as well.
In addition to traditional counseling, the center also promotes a wellness lifestyle. Efforts are made to help students understand their cognitive, behavioral, and emotional functioning, and the effects of this functioning on various dimensions of their life (i.e., intellectual, spiritual, physical, nutritional, interpersonal, educational/vocational, recreational, emotional, and social.)
The center’s goals are promoted through outreach programming, faculty/staff and student workshops and training, and other special programming events. Additional services offered by the center include consultation and referral. For more information, call the center at 610.282.1100, ext. 1462 or 1551.
PACE (Peers Advising Counseling Educating)
PACE is a team of trained students who serve as advisors, counselors, and educators to the student body. They are affiliated with the BACCHUS initiative of NASPA (National Association of Student Personnel Administrators).
DeSales University recognizes that students often relate better to, or are more comfortable with, their peers when it comes to confiding personal struggles. For this reason, the PACE team is trained to provide confidential, one-on-one peer counseling. Students in need of guidance and/or support can schedule appointments directly with a PACE team member of their choice. Students can schedule an appointment by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org, or calling 610-282-1100, ext. 7223 (PACE).
As educators, PACE hosts programs throughout the year to raise awareness about suicide, substance abuse, body image, bullying, responsible use of social media, identifying abusive relationships, alcohol safety, mental health awareness, nutrition, time management, coping with stress, and more.
Through its worship and other spiritual activities, Campus Ministry seeks to form Christian Humanists by helping the traditional student community to be faithful, maturing, and prayerful disciples of Jesus who minister to and lead the Church and society. The life, teachings, and spirituality of St. Francis de Sales are the guiding force in the ministry. Campus Ministry seeks to form students who will value and pursue life-long faith development; be full, conscious, and active participants in Sunday Eucharist and parish life; can discern, develop, and live an attractive personal life of devotion, prayer, and service appropriate to their vocation and state in life; and be able to articulate a working understanding of Salesian spirituality. While DeSales is a proudly Roman Catholic institution in the Salesian tradition, Campus Ministry seeks to serve the needs of the entire student body, including those of other faith traditions and of no particular faith.
Office of Community Service and Advocacy
The Office of Community Service and Advocacy provides volunteer service opportunities for all members of the University community and works to create and foster a vibrant commitment to community service through meaningful outreach activities. A variety of opportunities are available for individuals and groups to put their faith into action. The programs promote genuine human interaction between the members of the University community and our neighbors in the Lehigh Valley and beyond.
The Office of Community Service and Advocacy provides various activities to accommodate a broad range of community needs, the diverse skills and interests of the DeSales community, and the different schedules of all involved. Its programs include:
- Ongoing service projects: On a regularly scheduled basis students work at after school programs in both elementary schools and high schools, homeless shelters, and retirement communities. Transportation is provided.
- One time service projects: Several events and activities take place only once per semester or once per year, such as the DeSales Blood Drive, Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week, and a children’s Halloween Party and Holiday Party.
- Students can take part in national and global service experiences over Winter, Spring, and Summer breaks. Some of our previous experiences have been with Habitat for Humanity, Feed the Children, All Hands and Hearts Disaster Response, the American Hiking Society, and the Missionaries of Charity; and, in previous locations: New Orleans, LA; the Appalachian region; Kolkata, India; Johannesburg, South Africa; Natchez State Park, Tennessee; Houston, TX; Costa Rica; etc.
The Health Center is dedicated to helping students stay well and directing them toward proper treatment if they become ill.
The center is open Monday, Tuesday, and Friday, from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.; Wednesday and Thursday, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Treatment provided by the nursing staff, a nurse practitioner, and registered nurses, is without charge. Student visits to the University physician are covered by the Student Life Fee. If a student is referred for further off-campus diagnostic testing or blood work, every effort is made to access care within the parameters of the student’s personal health insurance carrier. In emergency situations, students are sent to a nearby hospital for a higher level of care.
All students must complete an online Health Form packet as part of the admissions process.
Athletics and Recreation/ Intramurals
Students participate in a full and active program of intramural and recreational sports housed in Billera Hall. The facility includes four regulation basketball courts, four volleyball courts, a fitness center, and an aerobics studio, which is open to all members of the University community.
Outdoor facilities include an all-weather track and field facility, as well as field hockey, soccer, and softball fields, baseball, tennis, and lacrosse venues. Additionally, the cross country course, which traverses the campus, is one of the best in the eastern United States.
DeSales University is a member of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division III, the Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC), the Middle Atlantic Conferences (MAC), the Freedom Conference, and the Lehigh Valley Association of Intercollegiate Athletics for Women (LVAIAW). The University sponsors a 16-sport intercollegiate athletic program, offering competition in baseball, basketball, cross country, lacrosse, soccer, track and field, and golf for men; and in basketball, cross country, field hockey, soccer, softball, tennis, track and field, and volleyball for women.
Character U - the First Year Experience
The current First-Year Experience Program, with Character U as the cornerstone, strives to guide first-year students through their initial year in the DeSales community by introducing them to groups, organizations, and other opportunities for engagement. It is also, most importantly, a welcoming space during this new chapter of their lives. The program allows first-year students to open doors and meet others, while building character, inspired by St. Francis de Sales through the university’s core values.
The incoming first-year students are divided into eight groups, or pods. Each pod consists of one Captain, five Mentors, and about 60-70 first-year students. The Captains oversee their Mentors, who meet twice per month with their first-year students through May.
Character U is overseen by the Student Engagement and Leadership Office, specifically the Associate Dean of Students for Engagement and Leadership. The office for Character U resides in the SEAL wing of the Dorothy Day Student Union.
Managing Your Victory Plan (MVP) Program
The MVP Program is open to ALL interested juniors and seniors and serves as the culminating requirement of the DeSales Experience in Character and Leadership. As Character U prepares students for their tenure at DeSales, the MVP Program prepares students to best market themselves to obtain successful post-graduation plans. This program affords students the opportunity to network with and learn from industry professionals and successful DeSales graduates. Once a month, students attend sessions that address various components of the transition from university life to the world of work. Each month’s topic centers around one of the 8 NACE career competencies (transferable skills) sought by employers and graduate programs.
In addition to attending one meeting per month, students’ personalized “Victory Plans” consist of a series of monthly opportunities to engage and grow. These opportunities include networking events, career-sponsored programs, and developing a resume, cover letter, and LinkedIn page. Upon completion of the MVP Program, students will be better prepared to enter life after college.
The Office of Residence Life and the Office of Housing are committed to providing residence halls that are safe, secure, and conducive to the learning and growth of each resident. In accordance with Salesian spirituality, the residence life staff strives to create a welcoming living environment in which students’ rights and responsibilities are protected, differences are celebrated and appreciated, constructive social interaction is valued and advanced, and students are challenged to be contributing members of the community. The majority of DeSales University students live on campus in one of 9 residential communities: Aviat Hall, Annecy Hall, Chappuis Hall, Conmy Hall, DeChantal Hall, Donahue Hall, Tocik Hall, University Heights, and Finnegan, Guerin, and Harvey Houses (University Village).
The Office of Residence Life oversees the supervision of the residence hall staff and enforcement of residence hall regulations. The Office of Housing coordinates all aspects of housing, including housing assignments. The live-in professional staff members are directly responsible for the general operation of an assigned housing area, supervising the resident advisors (RAs), planning and coordinating residence hall programs, responding appropriately to student concerns, and ensuring compliance with University regulations/residence hall policies. Each residence hall floor/unit has a RA who serves as a resource for the residents, as a leader in building community, and who documents any violations of University/residence hall policy.
University policies and residence hall regulations are designed to ensure a high quality of daily life and to prevent behavior that is an infringement on the rights of others, detrimental to personal growth and the common good, or in basic discord with the mission of the University.
For additional information, please contact the Office of Residence Life at 610.282.1100, ext. 1442 or the Office of Housing at 610.282.1100, ext 1425.
Student Engagement and Leadership
The Office of Student Engagement and Leadership’s mission is to provide students with intellectual development through campus engagement and leadership.
The Office of Student Engagement and Leadership consists of the following entities:
- Student Activities events sponsored by the Campus Activities Board (CAB)
- Student organizations registered and recognized by the University
- Student Government Association (SGA)
- ENGAGE, the online management system for student involvement
- The international trips to Europe
- Supervision of the Dorothy Day Student Union
- Character U First-Year Experience and Orientation
- Leadership programs such as the National Society for Leadership and Success and First-Year Students Leadership Summit
- Transfer Student Orientation
- Professional development opportunities via national conferences, internships, and work study positions
Office Student Engagement and Leadership Philosophy
- We believe that all office initiatives are mission-driven and support the student life philosophy and commitment.
- We believe in an open door policy for all students and their ideas.
- We believe that all programs executed will be fair and will demonstrate the highest quality standards.
- We believe that the office environment should be friendly, helpful, and positive toward all students.
- We believe in the importance of a healthy work/life balance for students in and out of the classroom.
- We believe that the office exists to help students understand the meaning of Salesian leadership and to help them incorporate it into their everyday lives.
- We believe that it is important to be organized and to have a strong strategic plan so that students can utilize resources to their fullest potential and find satisfaction in all of their experiences.
Office Student Engagement and Leadership Commitment
- We are committed to engaging all students on campus and helping them to become competent leaders in order to build a stronger community.
- We are committed to communicating to students the many opportunities for involvement on campus.
- We are committed to creating a vibrant student life experience through various activities, which will be student-driven and implemented by the staff.
- We are committed to offering opportunities for students’ personal growth as leaders through various student programs.
- We are committed to providing an experience and culture of student engagement not just in the office, but throughout campus by breaking down silos and cultivating teamwork.
- We are committed to sending consistent messages to students regarding information distributed by our office.
- We are committed to challenging students to expand their minds by partaking in new events and programs.
Career Development Center
Career development assists students from all academic programs and class years with exploring majors and careers, gaining career-related experience, and achieving their career goals. Programs and resources help students define career goals, expand their knowledge of career alternatives, understand effective decision making/goal setting, have meaningful career-related experiences, and build a strong strategy for job searches or graduate education.
We welcome students and embrace opportunities to collaborate with employers, graduate and professional schools, faculty and staff, student organizations, parents, and alumni to provide the highest quality service to students.
Career development can help students attain successful employment or acceptance into graduate/professional schools with the following phases of career development:
- Exploration of majors and careers
- Acquisition of relevant experience
- Guidance with job search correspondence and the job search process
- Planning for graduate or professional school
Career development also helps students who are seeking internship experiences related to their academic majors and career goals. The program is a partnership among the student, the faculty supervisor, the employer, and DeSales University- represented by career development. Each partner has a responsibility to be honest and ethical. Each student represents not only himself or herself, but also his or her academic department and the University. Conduct and performance should be of the highest standards. Internships give students educationally-relevant work and learning experiences that integrate theory learned in the classroom with practical application and job skill development. Through this experience, students should also achieve greater maturity, including an enhanced understanding of their own personal and professional ethical codes.
The University expects its students to conduct their lives in a responsible manner. Students who exhibit behavior, which is inconsistent with the stated mission and goals of the University and the regulations, which flow from them, are subject to formal disciplinary procedures.
Multicultural and International Affairs
Student affairs strives to build an environment at DeSales that welcomes all members of the community in a respectful manner through cultural activities, educational opportunities, and exploration of the world we live in.