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APA Fellows Attend Children's Mental Health Research & Policy Conference

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

APA Fellows Conference Comments

"I was impressed by the conference's multi-disciplinary approach. I particularly appreciated the emphasis on including the viewpoints of caregivers and youth in the presentations."
Kiara Alvarez


"My favorite session was one involving the effective communication of information regarding child mental health to the public.  This idea really highlighted for me that the value and helpfulness of empirical advances is limited if we can not effectively communicate those findings to the people whose lives it may improve."
Emma Sterrett


"The sessions I attended raised the essential question of how to integrate mental health and educational interventions in order to see measurable improvement in students' achievement and mental health outcomes. I was excited to be a part of this conversation and to hear about the innovative interventions that others have tried. The resource CD on LGBTQI2S mental health issues has been incredibly useful for me in my work with individual clients and in schools. I have already shared a great deal of these resources with my colleagues."
Alea Holman


"I have been to a number of conferences and never have I seen a group of people that cared so much about what they do. This fact alone sets this conference above the rest."
Cheon Graham

There are various projections on the year that minority children will surpass the number of white children and become the majority, but all agree it is in the not-too-distant future.

As the numbers of minority children continue to climb, so too does the number of minority families asking to be served by individuals understanding of their own cultures.  The low percentage of health service providers who are ethnic minorities of are great concern, especially in regards to ethnic families in need of mental and/or substance abuse support.  

To identify, select and support doctoral level ethnic minority students and postdoctoral trainees who demonstrate promise and a commitment to careers that address the mental health service and research needs of ethnic/racial minorities, the American Psychological Association (APA) offers a Minority Fellowship Program (MFP). Funded by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), the MFP is considered to be one of the most successful training programs for ethnic and racial minority researchers and service providers in the history of federally funded training programs.

APA Fellows2010During March 7 - 10, 2010, four MHP fellows were invited by the USF Department of Child & Family Studies (CFS) to attend the premier national Children's Mental Health Research & Policy Conference in Tampa, Florida. Since 1987, the conference has provided a forum for constructive dialogue about key innovations in the field of children's mental health. More conference news.

“For many years, the conference has provided numerous sessions on the provision of culturally competent services for children and their families,” said CFS Department Chair Dr. Mario Hernandez, who on behalf of CFS provided the fellows conference scholarships.  “Not only did the interns attend sessions on the latest findings and best practices in children's mental health, they also had the opportunity to meet a number of experts in the field, including previous APA Fellow Dr. Larke Huang, SAMHSA's Senior Advisor on Children in the Office of the Administrator."

The APA Fellows are:

(In photo above, from left to right are Alea Holman, Kiara Alvarez, Ed.M., Cheon Graham, MS Ed, Dr. Mario Hernandez, Emma Sterrett and Dr. Larke Huang.)

The Department of Child and Family Studies (CFS) at the USF College of Behavioral & Community Sciences is committed to improving the well-being of individuals, children, and families within communities across the country through promoting respect, inclusion, development, achievement, mental health, and an optimum quality of life.

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Child & Family Studies