Stanford University

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Grief Resources

On Campus Resources

1. Office for Religious Life
The Deans for Religious Life (otherwise known as Stanford's University Chaplains) are available to undergrad and grad students of any religious or non-religious background. Grief often raises questions about values and meanings and people look for ways to express themselves and move through experiences of loss. Please call on us for these conversations and resources if you have lost a loved one, or know a friend who has.

The Rev. Scotty McLennan
Unitarian Universalist


Rabbi Patricia Karlin-Neumann

The Rev. Joanne Sanders

2. Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS)
As a response to the loss of a loved person, grief is a universal reaction experienced by all of us at some point in our life. The capacity that make us capable of warm satisfying relationships also leaves us vulnerable to sadness, despair, and grief. Sometimes the death of a loved person increases our vulnerability to the point that our emotional, social and spiritual resources are depleted and our capacity to sustain ourselves is diminished. We at CAPS believe that the process of bereavement can be favorably influenced by the support of friends and family, and sometimes counseling.

CAPS offers, without charge, evaluations and brief confidential counseling to any registered student. CAPS has 24 hour availability for urgent situations.

3. Undergraduate Residence Deans StudentResources/Contact.html#Dean
Undergraduate Residence Deans offer personal and practical support to students who are grieving the loss of a loved one. This may take the form of talking things over; contacting professors, advisors, or friends; providing information about taking leave, getting incompletes, etc.; and giving information about other services which are available on campus.

Undergraduate Residence Deans

Carolus Brown 
(408) 391-7228

Lisa De La Cruz-Caldera
(650) 454-9120

John William Giammalva
(650) 736-1752

Christine Gissible
(650) 823-9187

Lisa Medoff
(650) 724-8959

Justin Neiman
(650) 725-2488

Michelle Voigt
(650) 725-3311

Danielle Masuda
(650) 724-3159

4. Graduate Life Office Deans
The Graduate Life Office (GLO) Deans help graduate students navigate issues, challenges and complications that arise in their academic and personal lives, including grief and loss issues. As a graduate student is grieving the loss of a loved one, GLO Deans will support graduate students as they make decisions about their academic schedule, housing situation, and other helpful personal accommodations. GLO Deans will consult and collaborate with faculty, academic department administrators, and other University services to provide efficient and supportive services to graduate students.

Graduate Life Office Deans
Ken Hsu
(650) 723-8357

Laurette Beeson
(650) 736-7088

Andrew Hernandez
(650) 723-9938

Shannon Hobbs
(650) 721-2265

Kimberly James
(650) 724-1801

Main Graduate Life Office Number
(650) 736-7078



The Bridge is a student counseling organization which offers students free peer counseling opportunities twenty-four hours a day. Students are welcomed to drop in or call.


The Stanford Help Center
The Help Center provides free professional and confidential counseling services to Stanford University faculty, staff, retirees and their immediate family members, including same sex domestic partners. Assistance is available for a variety of concerns including job stress and burnout, relationship problems, parenting, alcohol and drug abuse, grief, and concerns about elderly loved ones. Counselors make referrals to external professionals for clients who need specialized or long-term help. They are also available to assist with understanding and utilizing the mental health benefits available through the university. The Help Center also provides training and consultation services to departments for issues related to job stress, communication skills, grief and loss in the workplace, and conflict resolution.

The Help Center is staffed by psychologists, licensed clinical social workers, and marriage and family therapists. The group is diverse from the standpoint of age, gender and ethnicity, and a Spanish-speaking counselor is available. The main office is located on campus at 100 Encina Commons, and there are satellite offices at the Medical Center, SLAC and in San Jose. Hours are from 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Monday to Friday. For additional information about the Help Center services and staff, call 650-723-4577 or see:

Workshops and Groups
The Office of Religious Life, Office of Residential Education, and Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) offer workshops for students dealing with loss. In these workshops students get an opportunity to further learn about campus resources. They also have the opportunity to share what they are going through.  To find out about the next workshop, you can join the grief mailing list. You can also call Counseling and Psychological Services, Office of Religious Life or Office of Residential Education.

For workshops and groups for staff and faculty, please call the Help Center or join the Grief Mailing List.

Grief Mailing List
If you subscribe to Stanford’s grief list, you will get periodic updates on grief-related events on campus. You will be informed about upcoming workshops, groups and memorial services.

To get on the Grief Mailing List, please follow the directions that follow:
send mail to with this in the body of the email: subscribe grief-group

Off Campus Resources


KARA is a Palo Alto non-profit, largely volunteer organization which provides emotional support and peer counseling. Their specially trained counselors provide an opportunity for expression of personal feelings to relieve the stress, isolation and confusion associated with grief. Services are free, but a donation is requested.


Other Websites





General Books

Albom, Mitch., (1997). Tuesdays with Morrie: An Old Man, a Young Man and the Last Great Lesson. ISBN #0385484518.

Gilbert, S. M. (1997). A Wrongful Death: A Memoir. Norton, NY.

Hockenberry, J. (1995). Moving Violations: War Zones, Wheelchairs, & Declarations of Independence. Hyperion, NY.

Johnson, C. J., & Mc Gee, m. G. (Eds.). (1991). How Different Religions View Death and Afterlife.

Lama, Dalai., (1998). The Art of Happiness: A Handbook for Living. ISBN #1573221112.

Lamm, M . (1972). The Jewish Way in Death and Mourning.

Larson, D. G., (1993). The Helper's Journey: Working with People Facing Grief, Loss, and Life Threatening Illness.

Lewis, C. S., (1994). A Grief Observed. ISBN #006065273X.

Rando, T. A. (1986). Grieving: How to go on Living when Someone you Love Dies.

Rinpoche, S. (1992). The Tibetan Book of Living and Dying.


Carmichael, E., & Sayer, C., (1992). The Skeleton at the Feast: The day of the Dead in Mexico.

Childs, R. V., & Altman, P. B. (1992). Vive tu Recuerdo: Living traditions in the Mexican days of the Dead.

Echo-Hawk, R. C., & Echo-Hawk, W. R. (1994). Battlefields and Burial Grounds: The Indian Struggle to Protect Ancestral Graves in the United States. Lerner Publications Co., Minneapolis.

Henderson,G. (1999). Our Souls to Keep. Interculltural Press, ME.

Hooks, B. (1993). Sisters of the Yam: Black Women and Self-Recovery. South End Press, Boston, MA.

Stepanchuk, C., & Wong, C. (1991). Mooncakes and hungry Ghosts: Festivals of China. China Books, San Francisco. (Chinese approach to death).

Watson, J. L., & Rawski, E. S. (Eds.). (1990). Death Ritual in late Imperial and Modern China. University of California Press, Berkeley, CA. (Chinese ways with death).

Yarrow, H. C. (1988). North American Indian Burial Customs.