2022 Conference Breakout Sessions

Session times will be assigned and posted on this page in the near future.

Developing Sustainable Peer Education

Presenter(s):

Denisha Champion
Wake Forest University

Topic(s): Wellness and Prevention

Abstract: This session is designed to cater to professionals interested in either initiating a new peer education program on their campus or growing a current peer education program. Presenter will discuss the 5-year evolution of peer education at a small, private, liberal arts institution in the southeastern United States with information on recruitment, programming, and structure for peer education. Participants will develop an action plan during the session to implement at their universities.

Learning Objectives:

  • Participants in Developing Sustainable Peer Education will create detailed, written action plans with steps for initiating a new or expanding a current peer education program.
  • Participants in Developing Sustainable Peer Education will identify the steps utilized in developing the presenter's peer education program and determine if similar steps will fit with their institutional structure and characteristics or define alternat

Flourishing Collaboration: Navigating Community Needs Across Systems

Presenter(s):

Marissa Floro
Stanford University

Topic(s): Wellness and Prevention

Abstract: In response to the decentralized and disconnected departments on Stanford's campus, departments focused on health and wellness created the "Flourishing Alliance" to better meet community needs. As a result, the Alliance collectively cultivates and meets a vast range of community requests. From facilitating ongoing and one-time grief gatherings to creating resource guides focused on cultivating wellness to designing courses that specifically empower underserved communities, the Flourishing Alliance continues to streamline community needs and requests into curated events and resources. We will share some of these programs and materials, our decision-making process, and our hopes for future outreach, both virtually and in person.

Learning Objectives:

  • Describe avenues towards collaboration across campus departments.
  • Describe how range of virtual programs and events held throughout the past year met community needs.


Let's Talk about ADHD: How UCC Outreach Can Help Students with Focus Challenges

Presenter(s):

Christine Asidao
University of Michigan

Erin Albert
University of Michigan

Topic(s): Wellness and Prevention

Abstract: Roughly 16 percent of college students worldwide have attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) according to an international survey spanning nine countries and dozens of colleges (Antshel et al., 2021; Pesantez, 2021). This translates to approximately 1 in 9 college students with an ADHD diagnosis. Over the years, the University of Michigan Counseling and Psychological Services (U-M CAPS) struggled to best meet the clinical demands for students with ADHD and/or focus concerns. To meet the demand for ADHD services, our Outreach Committee thought creatively in addressing this through developing and offering a 3-session virtual workshop series during a global pandemic. This workshop was geared towards both students who have a formal ADHD diagnosis and those who endorse common ADHD symptoms. This presentation will review the focus of our workshop (e.g., basic overview/self-compassion, behavioral coping tools, relationship challenges and strategies), feedback received from our participants, and how we continue to balance didactic and process needs while incorporating social media resources. We will discuss our use of experiential activities (e.g., BINGO), offering more intimate small group time with other students, encouraging student engagement and sharing strategies with one another, and developing a one-time spin-off workshop for students before final exams.

Learning Objectives:

  • Increase audience knowledge about ADHD among college students within the scope of service available in UCCs.
  • Identify ways of creatively intervening and supporting students within a virtual format.

Let's Talk: Two years of virtual facilitation

Presenter(s):

Harry Warner
The Ohio State University

Topic(s): Wellness and Prevention

Abstract: Let's Talk, an Outreach program originally developed at Cornell University, is facilitated within many College Counseling Centers. As we adapt to life though the pandemic, many Outreach endeavors have shifted to virtual service delivery. While there have been many challenges, opportunities have also presented as distance support has become routine. This session will focus on experiences providing "Let's Talk" at a large midwestern university. The presenter will focus on logistics related to virtual service provision, staffing considerations, opportunities to reach marginalized populations, and marketing and promotion of this program. Complete results for 2 years of survey data will be shared. Data will include a demographic overview, growth of the program, and participant feedback. Presenter will provide a handout including considerations for starting a "Let's Talk" program.

Learning Objectives:

  • Describe the "Let's Talk" program and its use in supporting the college student population.
  • Analyze two years of survey data regarding the "Let's Talk" program and consider implications for the college student population.

Mental Health Ambassadors: Partnering with Students to Expand Access to Underserved Populations

Presenter(s):

Mikaela Padgen
Grand Valley State University

Topic(s): Wellness and Prevention

Abstract: Students are more likely to seek mental health support from friends than from any other source (Kuhlman et al., 2019).  Additionally, while 39% of students experience significant mental health issues, 25% report not knowing where to find professional support on campus (Healthy Minds Network, 2019).  This problem is further exacerbated for students of underrepresented identities who remain underserved by college and university counseling centers despite rising mental health needs—including risk of suicide (Kodish et al., 2021).  As centers navigate shifting societal norms, institutional needs, and limited resources, peers provide an opportunity to expand access to care among underserved students and those who experience barriers to treatment (Wesley & NASPA, 2019).  Mental Health Ambassadors is a groundbreaking initiative aimed at enhancing mental health through peer identification and intervention.  This one-day training is designed to provide a diverse cohort with the skills necessary to identify situations of mental distress, engage by providing empathetic support, and direct fellow students to resources.  The Mental Health Ambassadors program embeds a network of trained students in previously underserved campus populations by utilizing a tiered recruitment model, providing experiential learning opportunities, and modernizing resources from workbooks to websites.

Learning Objectives:

  • Participants will be able to utilize a tiered, targeted recruitment model to engage students of diverse identities and interests in mental health outreach programming.
  • Participants will be able to describe the Mental Health Ambassadors framework and its implementation of evidence-based practices.

Nguzo Saba as a Foundation for Counseling Center Outreach & Prevention

Presenter(s):

Jinaki Flint
Tulane University

Topic(s): Social and Cultural Foundations

Abstract: The presentation explores the Nguzo Saba (seven principles of Kwanzaa) as a foundation for outreach and prevention services to African American students and as a developmentally relevant vehicle for increased mental health service utilization among this population of students. The presentation also examines implications for student retention, campus wide collaborative practice, student advocacy, and systems-focused outreach initiatives. The presentation discusses how the implementation of the Nguzo Saba has the potential to strengthen racial identity which has positive correlations to increased academic achievement and greater perceptions of self-efficacy, according to research. The Nguzo Saba as a belief system may have implications for African American students' help seeking and ability to be proactive in mental and emotional wellness practices. This presentation is an exploration of how the Nguzo Saba has been utilized to support students in mental health, reduce negative beliefs about mental health, establish sustainable collaborations with campus stakeholders and increase mental health service utilization among African American students. The presenter also discusses Nguzo Saba in the context of Kwanzaa and describes practical applications of this system to optimize student mental health.

Learning Objectives:

  • Discuss the Nguzo Saba in the context of Kwanzaa and describes practical applications of this system to optimize mental health perceptions among African American students.
  • Demonstrate how implementation of the Nguzo Saba as into outreach initiatives has increased mental health service utilization and shifted attitudes about mental health overall and the Counseling Center specifically.
  • Discuss implications for African American students' help seeking and ability to be proactive in mental and emotional wellness practices.

No Longer Forgotten: A Presentation about Judaism, Antisemitism, and being Jewish on a College Campus

Presenter(s):

Merrill Reiter
University of Wisconsin - Madison

Topic(s): Social and Cultural Foundations

Abstract: As the field of psychology begins to acknowledge the impact of culture and identity on clients' lives, discussions about Jewish identity is absent in academia, research, multicultural literature, and diversity trainings. Therefore, counseling centers are unable to implement outreach programming and sensitive clinical practices related to exploring Jewish identity, coping with identity specific discrimination, and addressing culturally relevant concerns. A broad understanding of Jewish culture and identity and incorporating intersecting components will be included in the presentation. Additionally, how to create a more inclusive environment and have multiculturally mindful conversations with Jewish clients, trainees, and other UCC colleagues will also be addressed.  There is estimated to be 290,000 Jewish college students in the United States. A 2021 survey indicated that one in three Jewish students endorsed experiencing discrimination related to their Jewish identity. Meanwhile, Jewish people are less likely to utilize mental health services than any other religious group, and reported feeling "unheard" and "excluded" from campus conversations about inclusivity. This presentation will offer suggestions for outreach initiatives aimed at increasing the utilization of counseling resources to Jewish students and offering support to Jewish students facing distress related to antisemitism and other current events.

Learning Objectives:

  • Explain the different components and layers of Jewish identity, and how that might impact a Jewish students and UCC staff
  • Describe the prevalence of antisemitism on college campuses, and its impact on Jewish students and their mental health
  • Apply information learned about identity specific experiences in counseling work with Jewish students (e.g. safety planning, group therapy)
  • Create an inclusive counseling center environment for Jewish students and colleagues

Power in Community: Florida Universities/Colleges CLASPing Together to promote suicide prevention and awareness training and programs

Presenter(s):

Julie Rego
Florida Gulf Coast University

Heather Walders
University of South Florida

Topic(s): Wellness and Prevention

Abstract: Universities and colleges across the state of Florida are CLASPing together to centralize suicide prevention information and resources to educate and empower students, staff, and faculty. CLASP, a Florida coalition of staff and students from various universities, is an active and supportive community promoting effective suicide awareness and prevention efforts to save lives at Florida colleges and universities.   This coalition, and many student focus groups, led to the development of the CLASPing Together Suicide Prevention program, a website that connects campuses together and contains numerous resources. CLASP is an acronym for the coalition supporting suicide prevention, and it is also an acronym used to teach suicide prevention gatekeeping skills. The letters in CLASP represent: "C" Conveying care; "L" Listening & Communicating without judgement; "A"-Asking directly about suicidal thoughts; "S"-Staying focused and present; "P"-Providing Resources.  This interactive program contains video clips, discussions, role plays, and games.  CLASP members throughout Florida meet virtually once a month to collaborate, support, and assist in suicide prevention efforts at state colleges and universities. Participating universities collaborate with campus partners to join their campus CLASP team. Using the power of community we invite colleges and universities in every state to join us in fighting suicide.

Learning Objectives:

  • Participants will identify how the components of CLASP, a campus suicide awareness and prevention program, could be implemented on their campuses.
  • Participants will identify and name each part of the CLASP acronym used in the suicide prevention program.
  • Participants will discuss the process used to engage campus partners in joining campus CLASP teams to improve student mental health through outreach events and trainings.

Racism as a Public Health Crisis: Incorporating multicultural orientation framework into counseling center systems structure and outreach initiatives

Presenter(s):

Heather Walders
University of South Florida

Topic(s): Social and Cultural Foundations

Abstract: For the past two years, the University of South Florida Counseling Center has been working to identify opportunities to intentionally advance its diversity, inclusion, and equity work.  Employing a multicultural orientation (MCO) framework (Jones & Brazzel, 2014), these efforts have adapted a multicultural and anti-racist organization development model (MCOD) into the existing structure of the Center and its operations. In addition to enhancing cultural competence, cultural opportunities, and cultural humility among staff, a two-part outreach support group entitled "And Still We Rise: Skills for Interrupting Oppression and Fostering Healing" was developed.  The aims of the workshop are to provide support and a validating space to students with marginalized identities who have experienced microaggressions, invalidation of identities, or explicit attacks. In Part I, students are invited to share their experiences of macro and microaggressions on campus and receive validation and support. Students also learn strategies to interrupt harmful behavior when it occurs. In Part II,  students explore strategies for thriving in environments and systems that can be oppressive, embracing their marginalized identities.

Learning Objectives:

  • Participants will discuss how the MCO framework can be implemented in a university counseling center to enhance staff cultural competence.
  • Participants will describe the developmental process utilized in a culturally sensitive outreach program that can be integrated into their own array of services.

Supporting Student Advocates in the Role of Agents of Change

Presenter(s):

Emily Wilcox
College of the Holy Cross

Topic(s): Wellness and Prevention

Abstract: This presentation reviews the basics of burnout while also explaining the unique factors faced by students engaged in advocacy work. By learning this information participants will be better prepared to support the students on their campus. Participants will learn about the structural factors on college campuses which contribute to burnout, particularly of students with already marginalized identities. Understanding the system of college campuses allows you to greater understand the nuances which factor into the development of burnout amongst student advocates. This presentation will explore an outreach event aimed at supporting students who engage in advocacy and how you can design a similar event aimed at your campus. By the end of this presentation, each participant should be able to return to their campus with the skills to host an outreach event aimed at supporting students who engage in advocacy work.

Learning Objectives:

  • Participants will be able to identify warning signs of burnout in student advocates and be able to train students to notice these signs in themselves.
  • Participants will analyze the systemic factors that lead to burnout amongst student advocates.
  • Participants will be able to plan and implement events aimed at preventing burnout in student advocates.

Supporting Students of Color: Equity and Inclusion Focused Outreach Initiatives

Presenter(s):

Sudha Wadhwani
Montclair State University

Topic(s): Wellness and Prevention

Abstract: There is an urgency to adopt a racial equity lens to campus mental health and outreach programming, now more than ever before. This presentation will provide an overview of the needs and help-seeking behaviors of students of color (or BIPOC students), while also describing barriers to care and culturally-responsive outreach strategies for increasing access to care and decreasing racial health disparities on college campuses. The importance of a multisystemic approach which prioritizes diversity and inclusion at all levels of outreach, prevention and treatment provision will be discussed. Additionally, the priority for self-care of outreach professionals and clinicians of color will be addressed. An overview of equity and inclusion focused outreach initiatives at a large, diverse, state university, will be presented. The Equity in Mental Health Framework (EMHF) will be shared as a structure to assess campus culture, resources, and create a roadmap to meet the mental health needs of students of color. Considerations for promoting positive mental health by addressing diverse racial-cultural perspectives, stigma and cultural mistrust, and the impact of multigenerational racial trauma on the well-being of students of color will be discussed. In addition, participants will be invited to share barriers and successes at their college/university settings.

Learning Objectives:

  • Participants will learn about the needs, help-seeking behaviors, and barriers to care among students of color.
  • Participants will be provided an opportunity to consider and discuss ways their campuses are making counseling accessible to students of color on their respective campuses.
  • Participants will recognize the importance of building relationships and connecting with students of color in their cultural worlds.
  • Participants will leave with culturally-responsive outreach strategies that incorporate key principles of social justice, advocacy, and collaboration, to take back to their respective university settings.
  • Participants will learn about the Equity in Mental Health Framework as a campus resource.

Targeting Power, Privilege, and White Supremacy through Anti-Racist Outreach Programming

Presenter(s):

Kristin Manzi
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Rebecca Schlesinger
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Bill Berkhout
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Topic(s): Social and Cultural Foundations

Abstract: The impact of white supremacy and systemic oppression is felt on all college campuses and carries physical, psychological, academic, and other consequences. While we work to increase our support for BIPOC student needs and well-being, we also strive to address the sources of power and oppression, whether at the institutional, systemic, or individual level. Our anti-racism outreach team recognizes that although the impact of racism is disproportionally felt by BIPOC individuals and communities, it is the responsibility of those who hold privilege to acknowledge, educate, and influence change. If your counseling center includes staff that are interested in developing their own critical consciousness, supplementing diverse outreach programming on your campus, and mobilizing anti-racist efforts toward raising awareness on the costs of upholding white supremacy (whether consciously or not), you will find this workshop beneficial.

Learning Objectives:

  • Discuss the background and challenges to anti-racist work on college campuses and gain the ability to describe identity development concepts.
  • Demonstrate an understanding, both personally and professionally, of existing culturally-based outreach team models and list tools for conducting anti-racist outreach work directed at addressing the sources of oppression.
  • Apply critical consciousness and campus/community resources to begin enacting a plan for outreach teams at individual universities.

The Power of Cross-Campus Outreach Collaboration in this Virtual World

Presenter(s):

Pilar Siman
Florida International University

Kimberli Andridge
Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo

Sarah Jannelle Colwell
Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo

Matthew Woodfork
Florida International University

Kenley Sullivan-Thomas
Florida International University

Topic(s): Wellness and Prevention

Abstract: Meeting the growing demands of counseling centers can be difficult, especially as increased need does not often translate to increased resources. One of the ways we can meet this challenge is to collaborate with other UCCs to learn from their experience and create outreach services that help meet our students' needs. Join this presentation to learn how an initial phone call between counseling staff at Florida International University and Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo in 2018 led to:  1) The development of a successful in-person workshop program 2)   The transition of this program to the virtual world during the Pandemic 3)  The creation of new virtual self-help tools  4)              Ever evolving virtual outreach presentations and spaces based off our unique populations  We invite you to join the journey of cross-country collaboration between FIU, the largest Hispanic Serving Institution in the United States, and Cal Poly, a PWI with a primary focus on STEM related majors. We are excited to showcase the value of two UCCs on different coasts leveraging their knowledge, strengths, and resources to create innovative outreach programming in this virtual world.

Learning Objectives:

  • Learn how to effectively initiate and maintain a collaborative relationship between outreach professionals at two university counseling centers.
  • Understand how to leverage the strengths and resources of each university counseling center to create innovative virtual outreach workshops and self-help tools
  • Identify ways of modifying, adapting and rebranding one university's outreach workshops and self-help tools to meet the outreach needs of another university

Therapy Dogs in Higher Education: a community care approach to improve academic and mental health outcomes.

Presenter(s):

Cristina Antonucci
San Diego State University

Jen Rikard
San Diego State University

Topic(s): Wellness and Prevention

Abstract: College students are faced with unprecedented challenges leading to higher levels of stress, impacting both the demand for non-stigmatizing approaches to outreach and mental health support (Ward-Griffen, Klaiber, Collins et al., 2018). Research supports the use of animal assistance in reducing stress reactions (Paris-Plash, 2021). Considering this within the context of the residual isolative impact of the Covid-19 pandemic and research related to the neurobiology of connection, animal assisted interventions hold promise as a community care approach (Dana & Porges, 2020; Paris-Plash, 2021). At San Diego State University (along with our therapy dogs Luna and Baxter) we have implemented both community and individualized outreach events that facilitate collective healing and subjective support. Some of our programming includes "Lunch with Luna", classroom decompression visits, "Relax with Bax" events during midterms/finals, crisis debriefings, and individual appointments that help increase access to care. This presentation will outline the benefits of the use of therapy dogs on college campuses and teach strategies for implementing animal assisted outreach events to maximize academic success and mental health outcomes.

Learning Objectives:

  • Participants will understand the benefits of the use of therapy dogs on college campuses
  • Participants will learn strategies for implementing outreach events including therapy dogs to maximize academic and mental health benefits.

Walk it Like You Talk it: A culture change to challengeing the stigma on a college campus

Presenter(s):

ELNORA Vicks
Nicholls State University

Topic(s): Wellness and Prevention

Abstract: What courageous conversations are you having with your students, peers, and counterparts about the culture change of mental health awareness?  How are you adapting with keeping the different generations engaged in mental health awareness to break the stigma. This presentation will have participants reexamine how they implement mental health awareness on a college campus. Finally, participants will discuss how we can be more  proactive in creating a culture  of well-being to promote and be effective in addressing mental health  on a college campus.

Learning Objectives:

  • Examine how we can create a culture of well-being to help eliminate the barriers, which discourage students from openly talking about mental health.
  • Explore how we can be more proactive with utilizing different platforms, resources, and engaging in conversations with our students to challenge the stigma by spreading mental health awareness.



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