Student Counseling Center


Our Commitment to You

Black Hills State University Counseling Center provides on-campus counseling to currently enrolled students. Our professional counselors at BHSU are committed to providing unbiased, culturally sensitive, high quality care to students in a non-judgmental, objective, confidential setting. Our counseling services are for a wide variety of concerns such as day to day stress, immediate crisis, academic concerns, relationship stressors, adjustment concerns, personal growth, trauma recovery, etc.

You Are Welcome Here

We are dedicated to affirming respect, compassion, and acceptance for all, and we celebrate diversity with regard to all backgrounds and identities, including but not limited to: ethnic, racial, and cultural backgrounds; languages; mental health; sexual, gender, and affectional identities; physical, sensory, and cognitive/learning abilities; body sizes and shapes; ages; relationship and reproductive statuses; military service; religious, spiritual, and philosophical beliefs; socioeconomic statuses; substance use and those in recovery; and others for whom there is not yet commonly shared language to discuss your identities.

Please fill out the form below to schedule a Counseling Center appointment. If you are in need of immediate assistance, please call Campus Security at 605-641-6988 or 911. If you need to talk to someone immediately please call the Crisis Care Center at 605-391-4863. On call therapists are available 24/7. If the form produces an error message, please call 605-642-6520 or email

We understand taking the first step toward change can be challenging. That’s why we want to help you understand what to expect during your first visit…

  • Contact Us!
    Contact us at the Health Services and Student Counseling Center via email (, phone (605-642-6520) or walk in at the Health Services Desk in the Basement of the Student Union. You will be greeted by friendly support staff who aid the counselors and the health services staff with scheduling. All scheduling will be discrete and private. Our support staff works very hard to provide quality client service and to get you an appointment with a counselor as soon as possible.
  • Initial Consultation
    You will be provided a brief intake form with to help our counselors gather some background information about you upon the day of your first visit. The form will also have the privacy and confidentiality consent form attached for your convenience. Sessions last no longer than 50 minutes. During your first session, the counselor and you will begin to create a tailored action plan to work on together in counseling services. Since everyone has different needs, the therapists at BHSU work at the pace that is most comfortable to you. Most of the time, you’ll work with the same counselor throughout the duration of your time in counseling unless otherwise specified. Our clients are encouraged to find the best fit counselor for their needs.
  • Ongoing Counseling Services
    You and your counselor will make appointments after each session. However, life happens. The support staff also help with rescheduling and initial client appointments to help streamline health services care. Depending on your needs, you may choose to schedule appointments weekly, biweekly, monthly, or check in when needed. This can be determined by you and your counselor after initial consultation.
  • Our counselors are committed to providing high quality care and meeting you where you’re at on your journey. Everyone arrives in a different place. Here are some common reasons BHSU students come to counseling…

    Our counselors are committed to providing high quality care and meeting you where you’re at on your journey. Everyone arrives in a different place. Here are some common reasons BHSU students come to counseling…

    Could this be you?

  • I'm stressed!
  • I have a hard time feeling comfortable around others.
  • Sometimes I feel I can’t go on.
  • I feel out of control when I eat.
  • Sometimes I feel like nobody cares.
  • I'm thinking about dropping out of school.
  • I'd like to learn more about myself.
  • I feel incredibly alone right now.
  • My partner and I just broke up - I feel hurt and angry. 
  • Something bad happened - it's hard to talk about it.
  • I'm not happy with the way I look.
  • Other people are worried about my drinking / smoking.
  • I'm always nervous and I can't stand it.
  • My friend is acting strange, and I don't know how to help him, etc.

  • If any of these sound familiar, there is chance counseling may be a good fit for you!

    Services Offered Free to Registered BHSU Students:

  • Individual Counseling
  • Success Coaching and Wellness Programming
  • Select Group Counseling Services / Support Groups
  • Drug and Alcohol Education (CHOICES Program)
  • Individual-Short term
  • Individual-weekly, biweekly or monthly
  • In person, Tele-health, or via Telephone (Student's Preference)
  • Group Counseling
  • Medication
  • Referrals

  • OPTIONS Program:

    What is OPTIONS? OPTIONS is Black Hills State University’s alcohol/drug abuse psychoeducation program. This program is based on an educational and harm reduction approach. The intention is to engage students in a self-reflective process, in a non-judgmental environment, where they may notice substance-use behaviors, contemplate whether a change is desired and be given new knowledge to help create a personal plan. (If sanctioned by the University for a drug or alcohol violation a fee may be incurred.)

    Mental Health Locations - Northern Hills

    Our Office

    Located in Student Health Services in the Basement of the Student Union.
    Office Hours: Monday through Friday, 8:00 am to 5:00 pm.
    Counseling appointment hours: 9:00 am to 4:00 pm M-F or by special request.
    Contact our office at 605.642.6520 or email us at to schedule an appointment.

    Not sure if counseling is for you? Click here to learn more...

    Meet Our Counseling Staff:

    Sarah Hewitt

    Sarah Hewitt MS, LPC, QMHP
    Director of Counseling
    1200 University St. Unit 9429
    Spearfish, SD 57799-9429
    Appointments: (605)642-6520
    Fax: (605)642-6194

    Education / Training:
    B.S. Minnesota State University, Mankato-Sociology, Corrections, and Alcohol/Drug Studies, M.S. South Dakota State University-Counseling

    Theoretical Influences:
    Person Centered, Dialectical Behavior Therapy, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), and Trauma-Focused CBT

    Professional Trainings and/or Certifications:
    Nonviolent Crisis Intervention, Motivational Interviewing, EMDR, TF-CBT, Aggression Replacement Training, and DBT

    Contact Us

    Counseling Center Office
    Phone: 605-642-6520
    Walk Ins at Health Services Desk

    to schedule an appointment

    Counseling Center - After Hours

    Public Safety 8:00AM - 5:00PM

    Public Safety - After Hours

    Hotline Information

    Emergency dial 911

    Sheriff's Department

    National Hopeline Network

    Catholic Social Services

    Crisis Care Center