Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) - CEAS Embedded Counselor

Headshot of Amy Blankenship

Amy Blankenship

MS, LPCC-S, TRCC Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor, Trauma Responsive Care Certified

(513) 556-0648

At UC CAPS, we prioritize accessible and effective services that you can access when you need them. We take a collaborative, strengths-based approach to help you identify tools, resources, and strategies to meet your mental health goals. This might only take one meeting, or it might take a little more support. Either way, we’re here to help you on your Bearcat journey.

Get Support (513) 556-0648

During business hours (M-F, 8:30 a.m.-5 p.m.), call us to schedule a free appointment or consult with a counselor.

If you're in need of crisis support or after-hours care, call us and follow the prompts to speak to a counselor.

For a free 20-minute consult, schedule a Let's Talk! session with your embedded counselor.

Location, Hours and Contact Information

Amy Blankenship, LPCC-S, Embedded Clinical Counselor, Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) | CEAS | University of Cincinnati | | 513-556-0648

Embedded Outreach

If faculty, staff, or student organizations have a need for specific programs, contact the embedded counselor to request a presentation or workshop. Programs could cover topics such as study skills, career development, test anxiety, stress management, self-care, and suicide prevention. Clinicians may also be available to provide mental health support and presence for an event. Please give a two-week notice for requests.

Are you interested in meeting with the CEAS embedded mental health counselor? Make an appointment by following the steps below:

  • Call UC CAPS at 513-556-0648.
  • Indicate that you are a CEAS student and you'd like to schedule with Amy Blankenship.
  • UC CAPS will schedule your initial 40-minute in-person, video conference or phone appointment.
  • UC CAPS will provide an email with instructions for completing pre-appointment paperwork, and how to connect to your appointment.
  • Make sure you complete the pre-appointment paperwork prior to your counseling meeting

Counseling is an opportunity to form a relationship with a person who is professionally trained to help discuss and navigate concerns and challenges. This helping relationship can lead to a growth process that helps individuals define goals, make decisions, and solve problems related to personal-social, educational and career concerns. Some of the most common issues addressed at the center include:

  • Transitioning to college life
  • Stress from home
  • Classroom performance
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Relationship problems
  • Grief and loss
  • Substance abuse
  • Gender- and identity-based trauma
  • Assessment and referral may be the course of services for some clients

TAO is a free interactive, web-based self-help program that provides online and mobile tools to help you overcome the day-to-day challenges around stressors like anxiety, depression, or other concerns.

Check out all our resources for students, faculty, and staff on our main CAPS resources page.

The Reach Out - University of Cincinnati App is a free app available for smart phones that provides a wealth of information for the UC community.

This new app includes information regarding available resources under a "Help Me" menu, tips on how to talk with others about mental health under a "Help a friend" menu and contact information for crisis services under "Emergency Contacts". 

University of Cincinnati Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) is committed to embracing and celebrating diversity that works towards the inclusivity and belongingness for all in our campus community. We do this through ongoing training on Culturally Responsive approaches to therapy and examination and redefinition of our own roles, policies, and biases within our system and services. Our staff is dedicated to promoting an environment of respect, appreciation, acceptance, curiosity, and compassion towards differences in race, ethnicity, national origin, gender, age, religious affiliation, spiritual practices, political beliefs, sexual orientation, relational orientation, physical/mental ability, socioeconomic status, and cultural worldview of all students. We take a stance against discrimination and oppression in any form and encourage the utilization of our services by all students, especially those who might be reluctant to seek traditional forms of treatment. To this end, we strive to create an atmosphere of affirmation, openness, trust, and safety where all attitudes, beliefs, values, and behaviors can be openly shared and explored.

Common Questions

CAPS does charge a fee for some services. The initial consultation and first three individual sessions are at no cost to students. There will be a $35 fee for most individual therapy sessions after the third individual appointment in a fiscal year. There is no charge for group therapy. No student will be denied services due to financial barriers. If you have questions or concerns about fees, please speak to your initial consultation therapist or ongoing treatment provider about a fee waiver. Select the "Pay Fees Here" button below to pay your balance.

Note: CAPS waives the fees for the following students:

  1. Students with a Medicare, Medicaid, or Student Health insurance plan
  2. Students who are Veterans
  3. Students who are Pell or Cincinnati Pride Grant Recipients
  4. Students who have experienced an identity-based violence, stress or trauma.

* Students whose service fees are waived, will still be required to pay the $25.00 fee if missed session was not called into CAPS within the 24 hours.

For more information about CAPS service fees, please see Common Questions on the CAPS page.

CAPS adheres to state, federal, and professional standards in the provision of mental health services. A student’s discussions with a counselor are kept completely confidential within CAPS and will not be part of the student's school record. The exception is when a student poses foreseeable harm to self (student) or as required by HIPAA law. A student can also choose to sign a release of information form to allow the counselor to disclose confidential information to a third party.

confidential information to a third party.

Notice Regarding Confidentiality of Treatment Records, Family Educational Rights & Privacy Act (FERPA)

The privacy of your treatment information is important to all of us at University of Cincinnati (UC) Counseling & Psychological Services (CAPS), Division of Student Affairs. This Notice will tell you about the way we protect that privacy by complying with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).

What is FERPA?

FERPA is a federal law that protects the privacy of students’ “education records.” The University of Cincinnati follows FERPA regulations because it receives funds that are administered by the U.S. Department of Education. Under FERPA, “Education Records” are very broadly defined as records that are directly related to a student and are kept by an educational agency or institution, or someone acting for the agency or institution.

How does FERPA apply to my records at CAPS?

Under FERPA, the records maintained by CAPS are “Treatment Records”. “Treatment records” are records regarding a student aged eighteen (18) or older who is attending a post-secondary institution, and which are made or maintained by a physician, psychiatrist, psychologist, counselor, or other recognized professional and which are made, maintained, or used only in connection with the provision of treatment to the student and are not available to other third parties.

How does CAPS use my Treatment Records?

CAPS uses your Treatment Records to provide you with healthcare services. We may disclose your records to other healthcare providers who are also providing you with treatment. In general, we will ask you to sign a written consent form before we provide your information to another healthcare provider for treatment. If there is an emergency situation, however, we may provide this information to other providers for your treatment without having you sign a written consent. At your request, we will also provide your Treatment Records to a physician or other appropriate professional for review.

Can my CAPS treatment records be shared with people other than healthcare providers without my consent?

In general, we will ask you to sign a written consent before we disclose your CAPS records to anyone for a purpose other than treatment. In the following circumstances, as permitted by FERPA regulations and Ohio State laws, we may disclose your CAPS records without your written consent: (a) to comply with a written subpoena; (b) to comply with a court order; (c) in connection with a health or safety emergency if knowledge of the information is necessary to protect the health and safety of you or other persons; (d) if we know or suspect child abuse or neglect; (e) reasonable cause to believe that an adult is abused who is unable to provide for his or her own care; (f) if you are a member of the military as required by armed forces services; (h) if necessary for national security or intelligence activities; (i) if you file a lawsuit against CAPS and/or UC; and (j) to coroners and/or funeral directors consistent with the law.

Confidentiality of Alcohol and Drug Abuse Records

Federal Law and Ohio State Law protect the confidentiality of alcohol and drug program records maintained by UC CAPS. Treatment information on your alcohol or drug use may not be disclosed without (a) your written authorization; (b) a court order, or (c) unless the disclosure is made to medical personnel in a medical emergency or to qualified personnel for research, audit, or program evaluation. 

Confidentiality of an HIV test or diagnosis of AIDS or AIDS-related condition

Ohio law requires that we have your authorization or a court order before disclosing the results of an HIV test or diagnosis of AIDS or AIDS-related condition.

What are my client rights?

We encourage you to ask questions about your therapist’s qualifications, your treatment, the therapy process, fees and method of payment, or any other issues. 

Right to request an amendment – You have the right to request that your records which you believe to be inaccurate or misleading. All requests must be made in writing and signed by you or your legal representative.

Right to Request Records – We may provide you with copies of the records or arrange for a healthcare provider to be with you when you review them to explain the records and/or answer your questions.

Right to Request Restrictions – You have the right to request restrictions of use or disclosure of treatment information even for treatment, payment, or operations; disclosure to persons involved in your health care or payment for health care; or disclosure to notify family members or others about your general condition, location, or death. However, CAPS are not required to agree to a restriction you request.

Right to Received Confidential Communications by Alternative Means and at Alternative Locations – You have the right to request and receive confidential communications of treatment information by alternative means and at alternative locations (For example, you may not want a family member to know that you are a client here). Upon request, we will send any communications to an alternate address.

Right to an Accounting – You have right to have accounting of the disclosures of your treatment information upon request.

Right to Inspect and Copy – You have the right to inspect and/or obtain a copy of your treatment information. All requests must be made in writing and signed by you or your legal representative.

Right to a copy of this Notice of Privacy Practices – You have the right to obtain a paper copy of this notice of its privacy practices at your first service from us upon request, even if you have agreed to receive the notice electronically.

Where may I direct any other questions I may have about the privacy protections for my UC CAPS records?

University Rules 10.43.11 and 10.43.13 establish University of Cincinnati procedures for FERPA compliance. You may contact the UC Director of Privacy at (513) 558-2733. 

Most of the time, students feel connected with their therapist. There are times, however, when it may just not feel like a good fit. Although it might feel hard, we believe it is best to speak directly with your therapist and let them know you would like to change therapists. We do not get offended when students want to change therapists, though we do find it is helpful to talk about the reasons you want to change to figure out how to best suit your needs. 

The Greater Cincinnati Area Crisis Information Line Referral Sources can be used after-hours in case of an emergency:

  • Emergency Help (24-hour police assistance): call 911
  • United Way Help Line: 513-721-7900
  • Suicide/Depression Hotline: 513-281-CARE
  • Psychiatric Emergency Services: 513-584-8577
  • National Suicide Hotline: 800-273-8255
  • CAPS (Main campus): 513-556-0648
  • Emergency Help (24-hour police assistance): call 911
  • Butler County Crisis Hotline: 513-523-4146
  • Clermont County Crisis Hotline: 513-528-SAVE
  • Warren County Crisis Hotline: 877-695-NEED
  • LGBTQ+ youth suicide prevention hotline: 866-488-7386
  • Crisis Text Line: Text START to 741-741