| Frequently Asked Questions
The Peer Support Centre is a group of dedicated student volunteers who provide welcoming, confidential, and empathetic peer-based support to students at Queen’s University. Students are encouraged to come and speak with our volunteers who will listen and offer support for any and all issues. As well, we can suggest resources available on campus and in the Kingston community.
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Frequently Asked Questions

What is the benefit of speaking to a peer?

Students may benefit from the support and empathy of a peer, and may choose to visit the PSC for many reasons. Some students may find it easy to connect with a peer who is at a similar life stage and who may be experiencing similar life challenges. They may find the drop-in setup less intimidating than more formal services or they may be unsure if the issues they are facing warrant connecting with a professional. Speaking to a volunteer at the Peer Support Centre may be akin to speaking with a friend.

Why 10AM-10 PM, 7 days a week, during the Fall & Winter terms, and 4:00 PM – 8:00 PM, Monday and Thursday, during the Summer?

As students ourselves, we understand how busy one’s schedule can become. With classes and various other commitments, it can be difficult to find time to take care of yourself. Our “after hours” approach ensures that even students with the busiest schedules will be able to receive support. The Centre can become an alternative to services whose offices maintain only regular operating hours.

Due to the fewer number of students and volunteers available on campus during the Summer term, the Centre’s hours have been shortened to maintain the exceptional quality of our service.

When is the best time to connect with the PSC?

You will find a volunteer at the PSC at all times during our hours of Noon-10:00pm. Volunteer shifts are typically 2 hours long, beginning at 12, 2, 4, 6, and 8 PM. Depending on the timing of your visit, you may speak with one volunteer, or have the option to continue speaking with the next arriving volunteer. This depends on what you are most comfortable with.

Do I have to schedule an appointment?

The Peer Support Centre operates on a drop-in basis. This means that you can drop-in any time you want! No appointment is necessary, so feel free to drop-in at your convenience to talk with a volunteer. Sometimes, we will already be meeting with another peer. In this case you have a number of options. You may choose to have a seat in the chair outside our office and wait for the volunteer to be available. You may also choose to come back after a little while and speak with someone then.

Is it possible to speak with a volunteer from a certain year or academic program?

The Peer Support Centre is made up of volunteers in a number of different years and programs. All volunteers receive the same training and are prepared to support you in whatever issues you may face. That being said, we understand that it can be easy to relate to someone of a specific year or program, so we are happy to refer you to services that may be more related to your specific program or year, whether that be an academic adviser, counselor in residence, or other peer helping program on campus.

What if I know the volunteer when I drop-in to the Peer Support Centre?

If you arrive at the Peer Support Centre and know the volunteer who is on shift, the choice to speak with them is up to what you are comfortable with. If you are uncomfortable, you are welcome to wait until another volunteer is available or to come back another time. If you are comfortable, than you are welcome to come in and speak with the volunteer. All information shared at the Peer Support Centre is confidential. A volunteer will never address your visit or issues shared outside of your visit.

What if I see the volunteer who I had met with on-campus?

Your visit to the Peer Support Centre is confidential. This means that, outside the Centre, a volunteer will not address your visit or issues shared. If you see a volunteer on-campus, you are welcome to smile or say hello, or choose not to say anything. We will follow your lead and whatever you are comfortable with.

How are you different from the Peer Mentoring Program?

The Peer Mentoring Program, run through Student Wellness Services, matches a student with a mentor to provide practical and academic support. Mentors meet with students weekly for one-on-one coaching in university survival skills such as time and stress management, healthy lifestyles, motivation and course-specific skills. Please contact (613) 533-6000 ext. 78264 if you would like to learn more.