Training and Events Calendar

If a specific training offers a certificate of completion and/or continuing education credits, this will be stated directly in the event description. Please review that information. If questions, please contact the Center hosting the event. To view past events, click here.

Online Course
Event Description Reducing access to lethal means, such as firearms, can determine whether a person at risk for suicide lives or dies. This session will provide rationale for lethal means safety, recommendations on who and when should receive lethal means safety information, and an introduction to lethal means counseling for Veterans at risk for suicide. In addition, the session will provide information on basic firearm safety and safe storage practices.  Trainers Chad Pitts & Sarah Kemp-Tabbut Chad Pitts is a Veteran of the U.S. Army with over 10 years of organization and program management experience. He is currently the Program Manager for ND HOPES, a suicide prevention project in Western ND focused on Veterans, LGBTQIA2S+ youth, and rural residents. Chad has previously held positions within the NDUS focused on equity and diversity initiatives for disproportionately affected populations including LGBTQIA2S+ and Veterans. While in the Army Chad served as the Non-Commissioned Officer In Charge for multiple domestic and global missions with the 82nd Airborne Division.   Sarah Kemp Tabbut is the Community Engagement and Partnerships Coordinator at the Fargo VA.  She is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker with over 8 years of hands-on and public health experience in mental health and suicide prevention.  Sarah is well-versed in suicide prevention best practices, including safety planning, lethal means safety, and community-based interventions and is a Counseling on Access to Lethal Means (CALM) Trainer.  She also partners throughout North Dakota with communities to create and strengthen community coalition efforts for mental health, suicide prevention, and Veteran/Military issues. 
Webinar/Virtual Training
Event Description This presentation will define and describe adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) and review the substantial empirical evidence on their mental and physical health effects. Multiple ways of understanding and assessing for ACEs will be discussed, as will how to identify and address them in clinical practice.    Trainer Melanie Wilcox Dr. Melanie Wilcox is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychological Sciences, Institute of Public and Preventive Health, and Department of Psychiatry at Augusta University. She is also a licensed psychologist and board certified in counseling psychology and works part-time in private practice providing both therapy and assessment via telehealth. Her clinical areas of expertise include culturally responsive and trauma-informed care as well as substance abuse and addiction. Her research focuses on culturally response and antiracist psychotherapy and training, racial and socioeconomic inequity in higher education, and racial and social justice more broadly. She is in her final year as a member of the American Psychological Association’s Board of Educational Affairs, which she chaired in 2020, and is currently President Elect-Elect of APA Division 17, the Society of Counseling Psychology.  
Webinar/Virtual Training
  This is session 4 of the Mindful Monday series, running from March 11 to May 20. Event Description We are excited to announce that Christina Ruggiero, RP, is returning to lead our first Mindful Monday series, Mindful Monday – Experiential Mental Health Practice, for Spring 2024. Join us as we continue to explore and experience different mindfulness practices related to the topics of creativity, rest, and self-care. This series is for anyone who desires to improve their overall well-being, resilience, and mental health.  The practices that are presented in the training are designed for quick and effective implementation both personally and professionally.  For mental and behavioral health practitioners these techniques can be easily incorporate into their practice.  Mindfulness practices are varied and can last anywhere from a couple of minutes to an hour or more. Vishen Lakhiani, Meditation Expert and CEO of Mindvalley, states “You can take a one- to three-minute dip into peacefulness, and you can see remarkable results. The biggest benefits are going to happen in the first few minutes.” Attendees who have participated in past Mindful Monday series have the following to say about the training: “Incredibly validating experience”, “Love doing this- can we do it indefinitely”, “Thank you for this training. It is hard to recognize we also deserve to be heard, have needs/wants and slow down and breathe for a while.” This is a 30-minute interactive training that begins on March 11th and will run every other week through May 20th, 2024.  Each training will feature exercises from different mindfulness disciplines. At the beginning of each session, participants will spend a few minutes grounding and learning about the practice for that day and then spend approximately 15-20 minutes in experiential practice, leaving a few minutes at the end for reflection and discussion. Trainer Christina Ruggiero Master’s Counselling Psychology  Registered Psychotherapist
Face-to-Face Training
To submit an application for this year’s Academy, please visit: https://wiche.zoom.us/meeting/register/tJEsdO6srzwrH9BvvkMVcw44BxaZGB9UzLTT  Application Schedule:  Application Deadline: March 22, 2024  Notification of Acceptance: March 29, 2024  2024 Mountain Plains Leadership Academy – Program #24CE0009 Session 1 _ The Heart of Leadership April 22, 2024 – April 25, 2024 · Boulder, CO  Session 2 _ The Business of Leadership September 23, 2024 – September 25, 2024 · Boulder, CO Target Audience: This accredited continuing education activity is designed for directors, supervisors, upcoming supervisors in the Behavioral Health, and Substance Use Disorder fields. Global Objectives: Forge meaningful mentorship relationships with experienced leaders in the field of rural behavioral health and substance use disorder management.  Identify your own leadership style, recognizing strengths and areas for development.  Discuss how to nurture high-performing individuals within your team.  Implement strategies to cultivate a supportive and positive leadership culture within your organization.    Leadership shortages in the rural behavioral health and substance abuse workforces continue to pose significant challenges for individuals and their communities throughout HHS Region 8 states of Colorado, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Utah, and Wyoming.   The Mountain Plains Mental Health Technology Center (MHTTC) Leadership Academy was formed to address these gaps and for the past five years, the Academy has served the rural behavioral health workforce and their communities by providing provided customized training to effectively meet leaders where they are and provide them with a map that helps them navigate the leadership challenges they have taken on.  This year, in response to both participant feedback from the 2023 Leadership Academy, and shared concerns about the escalating impact of opioid and stimulant abuse throughout rural communities in our region, we have reformatted the Academy to offer a 6-month Leadership Intensive experience to providers in HHS Region 8 states, working in the behavioral health, mental health, and substance abuse fields.  This intensive is the result of a collaboration between the Mountain Plains MHTTC and the Mountain Plains Rural Opioid Technical Assistance Center (ROTAC).    This collaboration allows us to expand our training offering to include two in-person events, with a training curriculum that addresses both the soft and hard skills needed to be an effective leader, one-on-one coaching, group mentoring, and ongoing monthly training.   Below is a preview of the 2024 Mountain Plains Leadership Academy Schedule:   April 22, 2024 – April 25, 2024 · Boulder, CO  Session 1 _ The Heart of Leadership Some of the topics we’ll cover include Interpersonal Style, Leadership Skills and Competencies, Situational Leadership, and Building Strong Teams.  APRIL 22nd – Afternoon & Evening Group Get Together – Introductions Group Dinner – Chautauqua, Boulder, CO  APRIL 23rd – Day 1 Continental Breakfast Provided Morning Session Lunch Provided Afternoon Session  APRIL 24th · Day 2 Continental Breakfast Provided Morning Session Individual Mentoring Sessions Lunch Individual Mentoring Sessions Afternoon Session  Monthly Trainings (1 hour) – May | June | July | August Monthly Mentoring (1 hour) Individual Mentoring or Group Mentoring (1 – 2x | month) – May | June | July | August | September   Session 2 _ The Business of Leadership Some of the topics we’ll cover include Leadership and Management Skills, Cultural Competence, Ethical and Legal Considerations, and Collaboration and Networking.  September 23, 2024 – September 25, 2024 · Boulder, CO  SEPTEMBER 23rd – Afternoon & Evening Group Get Together Group Dinner – Chautauqua, Boulder, CO  SEPTEMBER 24th – Day 1 Continental Breakfast Provided Morning Session Lunch Provided Afternoon Session  SEPTEMBER 25th – Day 2 Continental Breakfast Provided Morning Session Lunch Afternoon Session – Wrap-Up Who We’re Looking For:  New and emerging rural leaders working in the behavioral health and/or substance abuse & treatment fields in the HHS Region 8 states of Colorado, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Utah, and Wyoming.    Must be working in a leadership position.   Twenty participants are willing to commit to full participation in the 6-month intensive program.  What We Offer:  A free, customized curriculum adapted to meet the unique needs of rural leaders and facilitated by trainers in the behavioral health and substance use disorder fields, as well as private and public sector fields, with extensive leadership experience.   Continuous on-going support for the full 6-month period.  8.25 APA and LADC credits are available for Session 1. Credits for Session 2 are pending.  Travel, lodging, and all meals (excluding dinner on Tuesday evening 4/23 and 9/23) will be covered, per WICHE travel policy.  Applicants will receive more detailed information upon acceptance.   To submit an application for this year’s Academy, please visit: https://wiche.zoom.us/meeting/register/tJEsdO6srzwrH9BvvkMVcw44BxaZGB9UzLTT  Application Schedule:  Application Deadline: March 22, 2024  Notification of Acceptance: March 29, 2024    ACCREDITED CONTINUING EDUCATION  In support of improving patient care, this activity has been planned and implemented by University of Nebraska Medical Center and Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education (WICHE). University of Nebraska Medical Center is jointly accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME), the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE), and the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC), to provide continuing education for the healthcare team.  PSYCHOLOGISTS/LICENSE MENTAL HEALTH PROVIDERS   Continuing Education (CE) credits for psychologists are provided through the co-sponsorship of the American Psychological Association (APA) Office of Continuing Education in Psychology (CEP). The APA CEP Office maintains responsibility for the content of the programs. This activity has been approved for 8.25 credit hours of continuing education credit.    LADC  This activity meets the criteria of an approved continuing education program for Licensed Drug and Alcohol Counselors (LADC). 
Webinar/Virtual Training
  This is session 5 of the Mindful Monday series, running from March 11 to May 20. Event Description We are excited to announce that Christina Ruggiero, RP, is returning to lead our first Mindful Monday series, Mindful Monday – Experiential Mental Health Practice, for Spring 2024. Join us as we continue to explore and experience different mindfulness practices related to the topics of creativity, rest, and self-care. This series is for anyone who desires to improve their overall well-being, resilience, and mental health.  The practices that are presented in the training are designed for quick and effective implementation both personally and professionally.  For mental and behavioral health practitioners these techniques can be easily incorporate into their practice.  Mindfulness practices are varied and can last anywhere from a couple of minutes to an hour or more. Vishen Lakhiani, Meditation Expert and CEO of Mindvalley, states “You can take a one- to three-minute dip into peacefulness, and you can see remarkable results. The biggest benefits are going to happen in the first few minutes.” Attendees who have participated in past Mindful Monday series have the following to say about the training: “Incredibly validating experience”, “Love doing this- can we do it indefinitely”, “Thank you for this training. It is hard to recognize we also deserve to be heard, have needs/wants and slow down and breathe for a while.” This is a 30-minute interactive training that begins on March 11th and will run every other week through May 20th, 2024.  Each training will feature exercises from different mindfulness disciplines. At the beginning of each session, participants will spend a few minutes grounding and learning about the practice for that day and then spend approximately 15-20 minutes in experiential practice, leaving a few minutes at the end for reflection and discussion. Trainer Christina Ruggiero Master’s Counselling Psychology  Registered Psychotherapist
Webinar/Virtual Training
Event Description Review the increased nutritional needs of pregnancy and lactation. Learn about obstacles to achieving optimal dietary intake during pregnancy and after birth.  Explore the link between worsened mental health and poor or limited dietary intake in mothers and infants. Describe some steps clinicians can take to support people during the perinatal period through the lens of nutrition.    Trainer Nathaniel Johnson, PhD  Dr. Nathaniel Johnson is in his second year as an assistant professor at the University of North Dakota. He received his doctorate only a year and a half ago in Nutrition and Exercise Sciences from NDSU. He has published 14 research papers across a diverse set of journals such as Nutrition and Metabolic Insights, The Journal of Clinical Medicine, and Sensors. He is the founder and organizer of the UND Disability Affinity Network for Employees and is passionate about nutrition, disability, and equity. On a personal note, he loves his family, enjoys sports and competitions of all varieties, and has never met a dog that he doesn’t like.     
Webinar/Virtual Training
Event Description WHEN:  Every Wednesday, May 15 – June 12, 2024 from 12:00 – 1:30 PM Mountain/1:00 – 2:30 PM Central  LEARNING OBJECTIVES:  At the end of the series, participants will be able to:  Identify the key components of effective, trauma-informed crisis intervention and suicide prevention strategies within diverse communities.  Apply evidence-based techniques in crisis intervention to reduce risk factors and increase protective factors in acute suicidality.  Recognize and address the unique cultural and societal factors influencing mental health crises.  Utilize practical skills in empathetic communication, assessment, safety planning, and transitioning care in crisis situations.  Develop and implement an action plan for integrating crisis intervention and suicide prevention best practices into their professional setting.  INTENDED AUDIENCE:  Mental health professionals who are located in the Mountain Pains MHTTC region (HHS Region 8 includes CO, MT, ND, SD, UT, and WY).  PARTICIPANT COMMITMENT & EXPECTATIONS:  Attend a live 1-hour Orientation Session on May 15 at 12pm MT/1pm CT  Commit to 4-weeks of training for 1.5 hours weekly from May 22 – June 12  Complete 1-hour of weekly self-study learning activities  Access to appropriate technology to utilize online videoconferencing platform (i.e., an internet connection, webcam, computer/tablet, speakers, and microphone)  Be prepared and actively engage while on camera during the scheduled series time.    THERE IS NO COST TO PARTICIPATE  Registration for this series is limited to 35 mental health/behavioral health professionals who work in HHS Region 8 states on a first come first served basis (Region 8 includes Colorado, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Utah, and Wyoming). Once the 35 spots have been filled, registration will be closed. Due to limited enrollment, if you cannot commit to the full requirements, please defer this opportunity to others.  Note: It is expected that participants will have access to the appropriate technology to be able fully participate and be on camera during the session. This is not a webinar series and active participation is required to gain/improve skills.  CONTINUING EDUCATION:  The series has been approved for a total of 11 contact hours (10-hours content instruction and 1-hour orientation session). No credit will be awarded for non-attendance. The knowledge and skills learned should be applied within the framework of any applicable Operating and/or Credentialing regulations in your State of practice.  Trainer Bianca D. McCall, LMFT 
Webinar/Virtual Training
Event Description Executive function symptoms are common effects of everyday stress, myriad psychological concerns and, crucially, trauma and adverse childhood experiences (ACEs). Yet, Criterion E—that ADHD is a diagnosis of exclusion—is often ignored. How can we adequately assess for ADHD given the pervasiveness of trauma? Best practice considerations will be discussed.     Trainer Melanie Wilcox, PhD, ABPP  Dr. Melanie Wilcox is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychological Sciences, Institute of Public and Preventive Health, and Department of Psychiatry at Augusta University. She is also a licensed psychologist and board certified in counseling psychology and works part-time in private practice providing both therapy and assessment via telehealth. Her clinical areas of expertise include culturally responsive and trauma-informed care as well as substance abuse and addiction. Her research focuses on culturally response and antiracist psychotherapy and training, racial and socioeconomic inequity in higher education, and racial and social justice more broadly. She is in her final year as a member of the American Psychological Association’s Board of Educational Affairs, which she chaired in 2020, and is currently President Elect-Elect of APA Division 17, the Society of Counseling Psychology. 
Webinar/Virtual Training
  This is session 6 of the Mindful Monday series, running from March 11 to May 20. Event Description We are excited to announce that Christina Ruggiero, RP, is returning to lead our first Mindful Monday series, Mindful Monday – Experiential Mental Health Practice, for Spring 2024. Join us as we continue to explore and experience different mindfulness practices related to the topics of creativity, rest, and self-care. This series is for anyone who desires to improve their overall well-being, resilience, and mental health.  The practices that are presented in the training are designed for quick and effective implementation both personally and professionally.  For mental and behavioral health practitioners these techniques can be easily incorporate into their practice.  Mindfulness practices are varied and can last anywhere from a couple of minutes to an hour or more. Vishen Lakhiani, Meditation Expert and CEO of Mindvalley, states “You can take a one- to three-minute dip into peacefulness, and you can see remarkable results. The biggest benefits are going to happen in the first few minutes.” Attendees who have participated in past Mindful Monday series have the following to say about the training: “Incredibly validating experience”, “Love doing this- can we do it indefinitely”, “Thank you for this training. It is hard to recognize we also deserve to be heard, have needs/wants and slow down and breathe for a while.” This is a 30-minute interactive training that begins on March 11th and will run every other week through May 20th, 2024.  Each training will feature exercises from different mindfulness disciplines. At the beginning of each session, participants will spend a few minutes grounding and learning about the practice for that day and then spend approximately 15-20 minutes in experiential practice, leaving a few minutes at the end for reflection and discussion. Trainer Christina Ruggiero Master’s Counselling Psychology  Registered Psychotherapist
Webinar/Virtual Training
Event Description This online webinar offers a focused exploration into implementing Focused Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (FACT) within settings necessitating brief, effective interventions (e.g., Integrated Behavioral Health positions). This 60-minute session, split between didactic learning and hands-on practice, is designed for clinicians seeking effective, short-term therapeutic strategies that encourage long-term patient engagement. Learn the fundamentals of FACT, its application in IBH or similar settings for addressing a wide range of issues quickly and effectively, and techniques to boost patient retention and follow-up. Ideal for mental health professionals in fast-paced settings, this webinar will equip you with the skills to make a lasting impact in brief clinical encounters.    This training is in response to questions we received from participants at our April training,  Rural Resilience:  Bridging Mental Health Support for Men in the Heartland  Trainer Andrew Jordan Thayer, PhD, LP 
Webinar/Virtual Training
Event Description Historically, school psychologists functioned in narrow roles in school districts, and many school districts lacked the mental health services students require.  Multi-tiered Systems of Support (MTSS) is based on a public health model of providing services and interventions to students as needed.  This training will discuss the components of a school-based behavioral health model that addresses students’ mental health needs from prevention/promotion to early intervention to intensive services. Learning Objectives: 1.Participants will understand the components of behavioral services in an MTSS model 2.Participants will learn about how universal behavioral health screening occurs in schools 3.Participants will learn about workforce development strategies needed to create an effective mental health workforce 4. Participants will learn how to develop partnerships required to implement comprehensive behavioral health models to schools Trainer Andria Amador, Ed.D, NCSP Andria Amador is the Senior Director of Behavioral Health Services for the Boston Public Schools (BPS).  Andria has dedicated her career to urban school psychology and began her career as a school psychologist before becoming an administrator.  Andria, along with her staff and partners, have developed the Comprehensive Behavioral Health Model (CBHM).  CBHM is a multi-tiered system of supports designed to support the behavioral health needs of students across a continuum of prevention, early-intervention and intensive services.  Implementation of CBHM requires BPS school psychologists to expand their scope of service delivery to include all NASP Domains of Practice.  Andria had the pleasure of serving as the Past President of the Massachusetts School Psychology Association.  She is the Delegate Representative for the Northeast for the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP) and is also the coordinator of the NASP Supervision Interest Group.
Webinar/Virtual Training
Event Description Clinical and psychological assessments are crucial diagnostic tools; however, it is the assessor, not the assessment, that diagnoses, and as such our tools are only as good as our understanding of science and theory. We will review important trauma theory and science and its implications for diagnosis; and considerations for taking a trauma-informed approach to psychological and clinical assessment will be discussed.  Trainer Melanie Wilcox, PhD, ABPP  Dr. Melanie Wilcox is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychological Sciences, Institute of Public and Preventive Health, and Department of Psychiatry at Augusta University. She is also a licensed psychologist and board certified in counseling psychology and works part-time in private practice providing both therapy and assessment via telehealth. Her clinical areas of expertise include culturally responsive and trauma-informed care as well as substance abuse and addiction. Her research focuses on culturally response and antiracist psychotherapy and training, racial and socioeconomic inequity in higher education, and racial and social justice more broadly. She is in her final year as a member of the American Psychological Association’s Board of Educational Affairs, which she chaired in 2020, and is currently President Elect-Elect of APA Division 17, the Society of Counseling Psychology. 
Face-to-Face Training
Event Description Building a bridge from the science to rural Evidence Based Practice  Increasingly, rural systems of care are employing a range of evidence-based practices and programs to meet the needs of persons with serious mental illness.  Rural systems often modify these EBPs in some manner to enable utilization in a rural environment where workforce limitations, population density, and distances limit fidelity.  This knowledge exchange will bring together researchers, state policy leaders, and providers to explore and discuss how we bridge fidelity to the science to the reality of rural practice.    Location: Boulder, Colorado. Further details will be emailed pending enrollment.   Costs: Workshop registration and lunch will be provided. The participant is responsible for all travel expenses.   Hotel: A hotel room block is available at the Residence Inn Boulder located across the street from the WICHE office. To make reservations, please click here.  
Webinar/Virtual Training
Event Description The mental health fields have long been leaders in understanding and raising awareness of the importance of understanding power and privilege. Multiple critiques in the past decade, however, have suggested that an overly simplistic understanding of these constructs can impede personal and professional development in multicultural awareness and, as such, be detrimental to those with whom we work. Thus, in this presentation, nuanced understandings and analyses of power and privilege will be discussed on the basis of advancements in the anti-oppression and antiracism literature.    Trainer Melanie Wilcox, PhD, ABPP  Dr. Melanie Wilcox is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychological Sciences, Institute of Public and Preventive Health, and Department of Psychiatry at Augusta University. She is also a licensed psychologist and board certified in counseling psychology and works part-time in private practice providing both therapy and assessment via telehealth. Her clinical areas of expertise include culturally responsive and trauma-informed care as well as substance abuse and addiction. Her research focuses on culturally response and antiracist psychotherapy and training, racial and socioeconomic inequity in higher education, and racial and social justice more broadly. She is in her final year as a member of the American Psychological Association’s Board of Educational Affairs, which she chaired in 2020, and is currently President Elect-Elect of APA Division 17, the Society of Counseling Psychology. 
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