September 10, 2019

Talkspace, the global leader in tele behavioral health, today announced its first higher education institution partnership with Williams College. One in three  college freshman globally experience a mental health disorder , however many students feel well equipped with the necessary resources to manager them.

Williams College takes a creative leadership role in reimagining the purpose and reach of college mental health services that combines excellence in mental health treatment with multifaceted wellbeing promotion efforts. With a deep commitment to ensuring that all students thrive, Williams is expanding its spectrum of services by partnering with Talkspace to provide convenient, confidential and secure online messaging therapy with licensed clinicians year-round. In addition to having access to the college’s robust on-campus resources, including one of the best staffed college counseling centers in the country, students can use Talkspace to send unlimited text, audio and video messages to a dedicated licensed therapist anytime, anywhere. Therapists will respond to students daily, no fewer than five days per week.

“Demand for mental health services at colleges and universities in the U.S. continues to rise and we are committed to providing a diverse portfolio of services and wellbeing promotion efforts that meet the unique needs of students, and to developing innovative approaches to meet this need,” says Dr. Wendy Adam, Director of Integrative Wellbeing Services for Williams College. “At Williams, we are well-resourced and have a high utilization rate for our services, about 30% of our student population each year, yet we continue to pursue ways to reach students who may not choose to access traditional mental health services, who study abroad or have limited access to care when on school breaks.”

In the past year alone, three out of five U.S. college students experienced overwhelming anxiety. Yet only 10-15 percent of students, on average, sought help at their counseling center. Barriers like clinician availability, time-commitment and fear to ask for help prevent students from accessing behavioral health care during an important developmental phase in life.

Williams is highly invested in meeting this national mental health crisis by leading in multiple ways: through providing ongoing, uncapped access to traditional mental health services on campus; expanding access to care even when students are not on campus through Talkspace; and, to college-wide wellbeing promotion efforts aimed at developing student wellbeing skills and practices. Williams College will offer Talkspace services to students year-round, including summers and study abroad semesters, at no cost to students. Students can message a therapist in full confidence, knowing the service is HIPAA-compliant and secure. They also have full control when it comes to choosing a therapist to work with, maintaining the relationship or requesting a change, at any time.

“Developing a service that is as effective as it is convenient has opened the door to therapy for so many,” says Talkspace Chief Commercial Officer, Lynn Hamilton. “The flexibility Talkspace offers seamlessly integrates into the busy schedule of a college student, who may not otherwise have time to make regular appointment. We couldn’t be more excited to begin our higher-education partnership with Williams College.”