Suicide Prevention Across the Educational Continuum: Six-Part Webinar Series

March 6, 2020

March 5, 2020

Suicide Prevention Across the Educational Continuum: Six-Part Webinar Series

The Mountain Plains Mental Health Technology Transfer Center has partnered with the Mountain Plains Prevention Technology Transfer Center to host a six-part webinar series entitled, Suicide Prevention Across the Educational Continuum. This series will provide participants with information related to suicide prevention and intervention for youth, young adults, and college students.

Key learning objectives of this series:

  • Understand new and emerging research regarding the relationship between genetics and those at risk of suicide.
  • Learn strategies for assessing for suicidality and risk of suicide in school and college settings.
  • Understand suicide prevention and intervention strategies for K-12 and transition age populations.
  • Understand strategies for treatment and care related to suicide prevention and treatment for youth with Serious Emotional Disturbance.
  • Learn best practices for crisis response planning for individuals at risk of suicide.

Learn more about each session in the series, and register to attend the free, one-hour trainings.


Part One: Suicide Assessment and Response for K-12 Populations
April 8, 2020 at 11 am MT

Responding to mental health crisis and risk of suicide in a school setting presents unique challenges and considerations for mental health practitioners, educators and parents. Participants in this session will learn recommended best practices for assessing children and adolescents for suicide and initiating appropriate response to youth experiencing thoughts of suicide in a K-12 school setting. Special attention will be given to common screening and assessment tools used in school settings, best practices for utilizing an interdisciplinary team approach to respond to youth experiencing thoughts of suicide in a school setting, and ways to identify risk and protective factors for youth and adolescents at risk of suicide.


  • Erin Briley, MS, NCSP

Part Two: World Class Resources to Discover Genetic Risks for Suicide Death
April 15, 2020 at 11 am MT


Suicide leads to over 47,000 preventable deaths annually in the U.S. alone. In addition, suicide has increased by 33% in the U.S. in the last two decades. While environment plays a critical role, suicide has a strong genetic component. With the unique resources available to the Utah Suicide Research Program, we have the opportunity to make significant contributions to the understanding of this genetic aspect of suicide risk, with the ultimate goal of development of personalized interventions. This presentation will give an update on research progress and how results may impact the future of prevention and treatment.


  • Hilary Coon, PhD

Part Three: School-Based Suicide Prevention Interventions for K-12 Population
April 22, 2020 at 11 am MT

Participants in this webinar will learn the youth suicide prevalence nationally and the implications to schools. They will also be able to familiarize themselves with multi-tiered systems of positive behavior and social emotional learning. In addition, how the multi-tiered systems support the prevention of suicide. Finally, the webinar will discuss ways to build capacity and sustainability of these services in K-12 schools.


  • Aaron Fischer, PhD

Part Four: Crisis Response Planning for Suicidal Patients: An Introduction
April 29, 2020 at 11 am MT

A widely-used strategy for managing acute suicide risk is the contract for safety, also known as the no-suicide contract. Despite its widespread use across mental health and medical settings, accumulating consensus is that this approach may be ineffective. Alternative strategies such as crisis response planning or the related safety planning intervention have therefore been proposed. Written on an index card, the crisis response plan outlines simple steps for a suicidal individual to follow when in a crisis. Results of a recently completed randomized clinical trial show that crisis response planning reduces suicide attempts by 75% as compared to the contract for safety, thereby supporting the method’s efficacy. The purpose of this presentation is to provide an overview of crisis response planning, and to differentiate the method from other, less effective means for managing suicide risk.


  • Criag J. Bryan, PsyD, ABPP

Part Five: Suicide Interventions and Response for Youth Experiencing Serious Emotional Disturbance
May 5, 2020 at 11 am MT

Special consideration must be given to engaging in suicide intervention and response for youth and adolescents. This session will provide participants with an overview of best practices for addressing suicidal behaviors and thoughts for youth and adolescents experiencing Serious Emotional Disturbance (SED). Focus will be placed on understanding the definition of SED, engaging in interdisciplinary care for SED youth, best practices for working with youth experiencing SED and their families, and implications for suicide intervention and prevention with this population.


  • JP Legerski, PhD


Part Six: Suicide Prevention and Intervention for Transition Age Youth on College Campuses
May 13, 2020 at 11 am MT

Higher education settings are increasingly tasked with responding to the mental health needs of students and transition age youth on campuses. This session will focus on increasing faculty and staff understanding of suicidality and best practices for supporting students and transition age youth experiencing thoughts of suicide. Particular attention will be given to identifying warning signs for suicidality, best practices for screening and referring individuals to campus based care and best practices for suicide interventions for college and transition age youth.


  • Sarah Nielsen, PhD, OTR/L
  • Andy McLane, MD, MPH


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