Looking to increase the number of trauma-informed clinical supervisors and expand and enhance the training opportunities for clinical mental health counseling students, Dr. Jennifer Deaton of UNC Greensboro’s Department of Counseling and Educational Development (CED) was recently awarded a nearly $1 million grant from the Health Resources and Services Administration.
Said Deaton, “Our hope is to not only extend the professional pipeline, but to make meaningful connections with community-based agencies for reciprocal training opportunities.”
The ETIPP (Extending the Trauma-Informed Professional Pipeline) program will fund clinical mental health counseling students who are performing internships working with children, adolescents, and young adults. Providing training opportunities for those working with children and families that have been impacted by trauma will be another critical part of the program.
According to Deaton, ETIPP hopes to build partnerships with community organizations that may lead to employment opportunities for graduates of the program.
She said, “The first partnership of the grant is Family Services of Davidson County which will work with students during the project and prioritize an interview should an opening arise upon graduation. Uniquely, the project aims to increase the number of qualified, trauma-informed clinical supervisors working with trainees and novice counselors through the establishment of a clinical supervision advisory board and provide training in trauma-informed clinical supervision to partnering and emerging supervisors.”
The need for counselors with this type of training has become more apparent in recent years with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reporting in 2021 that approximately 64% of adults say that they experienced at least one childhood traumatic event. Just over 17% say that they experienced four or more traumatic events during their childhoods.
Deaton said, “After experiencing a traumatic experience, children, adolescents, and young adults may exhibit signs of behavioral and mental health challenges such as irritability, depressed mood, verbal or physical aggressive behaviors, or difficulty sleeping or concentrating. Others may experience traumatic stress symptoms that impact their academic performance or engage in risk behaviors and substance use. These alarming rates of traumatic experiences warrant the need for mental health counselors to be trained in trauma-informed care. UNCG is surrounded by counties that are designated as professional healthcare shortage areas.”
If you are a community agency or local practitioner interested in participating or partnering in training in trauma-informed clinical supervision, please reach out to Dr. Jennifer Deaton via email at email@example.com.