Concise Encyclopedia of Tufts History
Ears for Peers, 1989
Ears for Peers, created in the fall of 1989, is a student-operated counseling hotline offering help for students dealing with depression, stress, and other problems.
After hearing about the Samaritans hotline in Boston, Tufts community member Judi Goldstein decided to bring a similar program to the university. Enlisting a group of eighty-five volunteers over the summer of 1989, Goldstein set up a completely confidential call in network for students at Tufts. The volunteers, who were eventually narrowed down to twenty-five, underwent intensive training during orientation week, attending seminars with representatives from the Samaritans, the Massachusetts Drug and Alcohol Hotline, and Health Services, among others.
The service, operational between seven in the evening and seven in the morning, refers to itself as "emotional first aid." Students are encouraged to call Ears for Peers if they need to talk about anything. Ears for Peers also takes referrals from TEMS, and can refer students to counseling services when necessary as well.
As of 2000, Ears for Peers continues to operate as a confidential help line, urging students with any concerns or problems to call.