Our Mission & Vision
The St. Thomas Interprofessional Center for Counseling and Legal Services offers services through independent and collaborative counseling and legal clinics responsive to the needs of diverse and underserved populations. Students from the Schools of Law, Professional Psychology and Social Work provide services under professional supervision grounded in their respective missions, training models, and ethical codes. The interprofessional training and services are provided within the overall mission of the University of St. Thomas, a comprehensive, coeducational, Catholic university that seeks to develop morally responsible individuals who combine career competency with cultural awareness and intellectual curiosity. The Center directors, faculty, supervisors, students, and staff are committed to high quality ethical practice, interprofessional engagement, teaching and research founded on principles of social justice.
- The provision of services will be inspired by and congruent with the principles and values of Catholic social teaching.
- Education of students and service to clients will be provided congruent with the expectations and guidelines of the governing boards and accrediting bodies of the three professional disciplines.
- Law, psychology and social work will provide separate and collaborative practices with integrative training experiences.
- The Center will serve lower income, working individuals and families, elders, and immigrants.
- The Center will offer educational programs in response to community needs.
- The Center will focus on accessible service, ethical practice, training, teaching and research.
- Legal services will consist of three practice groups: elder law, civil rights, and immigration law. Legal services may also address additional civil matters that arise in the course of representation.
- Counseling services provided by social work and psychology will be multi-faceted in nature.
- Counseling will fill some professionally specific roles, e.g., case management for social work and comprehensive assessments for psychology.
- Law, psychology and social work will offer complementary roles and services through internal and external referrals.
- Careful attention will be given to the specific ethical and legal implications of collaborative practice and training.
- Training experiences will be designed to maximize participation by the three professions, e.g., presentations, case discussions, and student role plays.
- Policies will describe mechanisms for management of case data to protect client confidentiality even within the separate units of the Center, procedures for internal and external client referral, and provisions for careful orientation of faculty, supervisors, staff and students on interaction about client cases.
- Process and outcome program evaluation will be performed on an on-going basis to monitor success and foster continuing improvement.