You're concerned about a student or something just doesn't feel right. We're here to help! Let us take out the guesswork by referring them to Student Social Services.

Faculty and staff are on the front lines of identifying and referring students in need to appropriate resources. You don't have to have all the answers, but you can make a difference in a student's life by being the person who makes a connection.

Here are some potential warning signs that a student may be in need of services:

  • Sleeping in a car, motel, public area, or empty building
  • "Couch surfing" or do not have a regular place to stay
  • Has recently been kicked out or evicted
  • Is staying in an overcrowded or unsafe environment
  • Has not eaten a meal in several days and mentions being hungry
  • Has recently had Food Stamp or other benefits cut or reduced
  • Is bringing their children to class
  • Mentions being behind on bills
  • Has had their electricity or gas cut off recently

If you should notice any of these behaviors or if a student discloses this information and you feel they may be in need of assistance from Student Social Services, please make a referral here.

Issues UMSL students could be facing:

  • Food insecurity and hunger
  • Homelessness and housing instability
  • Risk of utility disconnection
  • Lack of safe, affordable childcare
  • Difficulty navigating public assistance programs
  • Struggling with a transition to independent life


Student Social Services can then provide a spectrum of services to meet the unique needs of students at-risk including:

  • Resource referrals
  • Case management
  • Advocacy
  • Crisis assistance
  • Guidance with public assistance


Tips for a helpful referral to Student Social Services:

1. Objective
Avoid personal opinions and subjective statements. Instead, focus on facts and observable behavior.
2. Descriptive
Include as many examples as needed to us to gain an understanding of the situation.
3. FERPA
Students can request to view their referrals as part of their school record. Keep this in mind when you make your referral. 

If you feel a student is in imminent danger, call UMSL Police at 314-516-5155.