Responding to Troubled Students

Responding to Troubled or Disruptive Students

Dean of Students Office

Drake University


The Troubled Student

Student is confused, upset, very sad, highly anxious, irritable, lacking in motivation and/or concentration, showing signs of depression and mix emotions, demonstrating odd behavior, or thinking about suicide.


The Disruptive Student

Student’s conduct interrupts educational activities of class or is dangerous; student uses verbal or physical threats; student is actively threatening suicide or violence; or is actively harassing others and resisting help from faculty and staff.


Given the recent events of violence on college campuses, the Dean of Students Office has highlighted a list of warning signs.  Faculty and staff should not hesitate to communicate with the Dean of Students Office, Drake Security, and the Counseling Center if there are reasons to believe students are facing the following circumstances:


  • Significant unexplained absences from class
  • Significant changes in behavior, appearance, mood or activities
  • Sexual Assault
  • Attend class under the influence of alcohol or drugs
  • Student dealing with death of a family member or friend
  • Student making physical/verbal threats and insults to students or faculty
  • Electronic harassment which includes e-mail, text messaging, video, and instant messaging to other students and faculty
  • Severe illness
  • Noted depression as indicated by behavior or writing
  • Any direct comment about hurting oneself or others
  • Student talking or writing about death or a suicide plan
  • Statement from individuals about access to guns or that they will bring them to campus
  • Your gut feeling, or intuition tells you that something is wrong with a student


If a student is making threats of violence to themselves or to others, contact Drake Security at 515 271-2222 and the Dean of Students Office at 515 271-2835 immediately.  Faculty and staff should take all threats seriously and never place themselves in an unsafe position.  Disruptive and troubled student behavior should be coordinated with Drake Security, Dean of Students Office, and Counseling Center.


Other Campus and Community Resources


  • Counseling Center                                          515 271-3864
  • Health Center                                                  515 271-3731
  • Residence Life                                                515 271-3781
  • Student Disability Services                             515 271-1835
  • Drake Security                                                515 271-2222
  • Dean of Student Office                                  515 271-2835
  • Des Moines Police                                          515 283-4824
  • Polk County Crisis and Advocacy Services   515 286-3600 or 515 286-3535
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University News
May 22, 2017
Drake Law School alumnus Terry Branstad, LW’74, the longest-serving governor in our nation’s history, has officially been confirmed as United States Ambassador to China.