Counsellor/Psychotherapist (specializing in Indigenous student support)

Date: Nov 12, 2020

Location: All locations, CA

Company: Wilfrid Laurier University

Department: Student Affairs 

Job Type: Continuing

Full-time/Part-time: Full Time (>=1249 hrs/year) 

Campus: All locations 

Reports to: Director, Student Wellness Centre (Waterloo) & Manager, Student Wellness Centre (Brantford)

Employee Group: WLUSA 

Application Deadline: December 3, 2020 

Requisition ID: 712 


Wilfrid Laurier University is a leading multi-campus university that excels at educating with purpose. Through its exceptional employees, students, researchers, leaders, and educators, Laurier has built a reputation as a world-class institution known for its rich student experience, academic excellence, and global impact.  With a commitment to Indigenization and commitment to equity, diversity, inclusion, Laurier’s thriving community has a place for everyone.


Laurier has more than 19,000 students and 2,100 faculty and staff across campuses in Waterloo and Brantford, as well as locations in Kitchener and Toronto. The university is committed to providing an inclusive workplace and employing a workforce that is reflective of local and national demographics. Our locations are situated on the traditional territories of the Neutral, Anishnawbe, and Haudenosaunee peoples. We recognize the unique heritages of Indigenous peoples and support their intentions to preserve and express their distinctive Indigenous cultures, histories, and knowledge through academic programming and co-curricular activities. Laurier’s Centre for Indigegogy is one example of how Laurier honours Indigenous knowledge.



Position Summary: 


As outlined in Laurier's Strategic Plan (2019-2024), Laurier is committed to creating a thriving, inclusive community by fostering a highly personalized, equitable, diverse, and inclusive environment in which all members experience the powerful sense of belonging. Some of the ways in which Laurier plans to create this environment are articulated in the recently released action plan for equity, diversity and inclusion and Indigeneity. As outlined in this plan, supporting the mental health of all of our students, including our Black, Racialized and Indigenous students is a priority at Laurier. As such, Laurier is hiring a Counsellor/Psychotherapist role to support Indigenous students (First Nations, Metis, Inuit) which will report to Director, Student Wellness Centre (Waterloo) & Manager, Student Wellness Centre (Brantford). This role will also receive support from the Office of Indigenous Initiatives.


This position will be part of the Student Wellness Centre team and a member of the Indigenous Student Services, this role provides counselling services for Laurier students who are seeking personal counselling. This position will help address the counselling needs of the Indigenous student population. The incumbent will provide high quality intake and assessments and appropriate interventions for students using either Indigenous healing modalities and/or Western approaches to mental wellness, based on student need and preference. Where indicated, the incumbent will refer students to other members of Student Wellness Centre and/or to appropriate university and community resources. This role is a professional counselling position with a significant focus on supporting Indigenous student wellness, cultural knowledge sharing, student success. Additionally, the role requires community services relations building toward a sustainable support services network for all Laurier Indigenous students at multiple campus locations and its Indigenous Student Centres using a circle of care approach.


This is a multi-campus role with, and the successful candidate will be expected to be present on both the Waterloo and Brantford campuses each week. 




Intake, Risk Assessment management

  • Facilitate the intake process to provide individual, short-term personal counselling for current registered Laurier students
  • Conduct risk/safety assessments for immediate risk of suicide, homicide, self or other harm
  • Provide individual crisis counselling for current students
  • Ensure timely, effective and de-escalating response to risk and crisis concerns
  • Work collaboratively with Mental Health Nurse, Special Constable Service, Counselling Clinical Lead, Director, Student Wellness Centre, Indigenous Student Centre where required
  • Create safety/wellness plans for management of suicidal/self/other harm risk, as needed


Personal Counselling/Psychotherapy

  • Identify next steps for personal support and safety rooted in Indigenous Worldviews
  • Create a collaborative, individualized treatment plan recognizing students’ strengths and needs in accordance with professional standards and best practices
  • Provide professional counselling appropriate to address students’ personal, developmental, and psychological/psychiatric issues using wholistic modalities
  • Complete risk assessment and management plans with all students presenting in crisis, with suicide risk
  • Ensure familiarity with crisis resources/supports
  • Facilitate external referral for students whose issues require specialized treatment, traditional healing or intensive psychotherapy
  • Facilitate a minimum of monthly counselling workshops or seminars to groups of students, unless more are requested
  • Participate in case conferences and work collaboratively as a member of an inter-professional team
  • Ensure Student Wellness Centre Director and team members are aware of students who may be at risk of harm, significant deterioration, or otherwise require support from the Student Wellness Centre
  • Maintain professional qualifications of a registered body and obtain external supervision, if necessary



  • Complete documentation in a timely manner per department policy to ensure effective safety monitoring for students at risk
  • Prepare resources for students, and maintain accurate and confidential records


Community Connections and Accountabilities

  • Engage in service, internally and externally, by working in partnership with local Indigenous Community Supports and Laurier Indigenous Student support services to build a network of support services and referral services for Indigenous students
  • Establish a group of Elders on which you can call for support with Indigenous students
  • Engage in training opportunities for various stakeholders around Indigenous wholistic wellness supports
  • Liaise with the Laurier’s Indigenous Education Council through connections of the Office of Indigenous Initiatives
  • Coordinate with community partners in the delivery and sharing of resources, where appropriate. i.e. visiting elder and traditional teachers
  • Perform other duties consistent with the mandate of Student Wellness Centre or Indigenous Student Centres, as requested
  • Work collaboratively with consenting students with Indigenous Student Support Coordinators in a circle of care approach




  • Master’s degree in a discipline relevant to practice with Indigenous peoples(e.g. Social Work in Indigenous practices, Psychology with major in Indigenous studies) or a program in Indigenous practice of psychotherapy recognized by the College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers or the Registration Committee of the College of Registered Psychotherapists of Ontario or by a body that is approved by the Registration Committee
  • Minimum of three years of experience in providing counselling in a post-secondary (or equivalent) setting including experience working in, and with, Indigenous Communities and Peoples
  • Must be of Indigenous ancestry (First Nations, Metis, Inuit) and connect to their community
  • Knowledge of, and engagement with helping in, current and historical issues affecting Indigenous peoples of Canada
  • Knowledge of, and experience working with, traditional Indigenous health and healing practices and modalities
  • Demonstrated experience and ability completing risk assessments (informal) and managing risk in an outpatient setting, including safety planning
  • Experience with group and/or workshop facilitation
  • Willingness to use computer tools to provide virtual/remote counselling
  • Demonstrated ability using a computerized scheduler/documentation system
  • Demonstrated skills in professional written and oral communication, reliability, flexibility, interpersonal skills, and team co-operation
  • Kind, caring and positive approach to student support and interactions
  • Demonstrated reliability and dependability


Position is based in Waterloo, with expectations of travel to Brantford two days a week once working from home restrictions are lifted.




Position Grade: SH-09

Rate of Pay: $36.69 - $43.15 (July1, 2019 rates)

Hours of Work: This is a full-time, continuing position. The normal hours of work are Monday – Friday 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. with one selected day per week (Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday) at 12 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.


This position is eligible for educational equivalencies. 



Wilfrid Laurier University endeavors to fill positions with qualified candidates who have a combination of education, experience, skills and abilities to successfully perform the duties of the position while demonstrating Laurier's Employee Success Factors.


Equity, diversity and creating a culture of inclusion are part of Laurier’s core values and central to the Laurier Strategy. Laurier is committed to increasing the diversity of faculty and staff and welcomes applications from candidates who identify as Indigenous, racialized, having disabilities, and from persons of any minority sexual and gender identities. Indigenous candidates who would like to learn more about equity and inclusive programing at Laurier are welcomed to contact the Office of Indigenous Initiatives. Candidates from other equity seeking groups who would like to learn more about equity and inclusive programing at Laurier are welcomed to contact Equity & Accessibility. We have strived to make our application process accessible, however if you require any assistance applying for a position or would like this job posting in an alternative format, please contact Human Resources. Contact information can be found at

Should you be interested in learning more about this opportunity, please visit for additional information and the online application system. All applications must be submitted online. Please note, a CV and letter of introduction will be required in electronic form.

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