The Iowa Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) Graduate Psychology Education (GPE) program is intended to train future psychologists in the University of Iowa (UI) Counseling Psychology (CP) program to develop and implement a sustainable training program in telepsychology for opioid use disorder (OUD) and substance use disorder (SUD) prevention and treatment in rural Iowa. The GPE professional track, Graduate Psychology Training in Telepsychology and OUD and SUD Prevention and Treatment in Rural Iowa, will supplement and complement ongoing CP Ph.D. training efforts and provide new opportunities for students to provide OUD and SUD prevention and treatment, and behavioral health care to underserved populations living in rural areas. This project will support the development of a telepsychology training clinic and specialized training in OUD and SUD prevention and treatment and telepsychology to meet the challenge of practice in the health care system of the 21st century in rural America. The specific focus of this program is to prepare a specialty track in tele-behavioral health care focused on underserved rural populations with OUD and SUD and other behavioral health concerns.

The Counseling Psychology (CP) Program and the Rehabilitation Counseling (RC) Program in the College of Education at The University of Iowa (UI) will collaborate with existing partners, such as the UI Hospitals & Clinics, VA Hospital, and establish new partnerships with behavioral health clinics in Medically Underserved Communities (MUCs) in Iowa. The collaboration and new partnerships will create novel opportunities for students to work with rural and underserved populations with OUD, SUD, and other behavioral health concerns. Additionally, this project will result in a telepsychology training clinic in the College of Education at the UI and increase our capacity to serve rural communities around OUD and SUD prevention and treatment that will be sustained beyond the funding cycle of this award. In particular, the project will catalyze the CP program to meet the “changing face of professional psychology” and address the developing opioid crisis in Iowa. This project directly addresses the critical national need for more Ph.D. level psychologists trained to provide coordinated health care to address the behavioral health needs of rural populations, and to train competent practitioners in the provision of telepsychology services to specifically address OUD and SUD.

The main goals of the program that are currently underway include the following:

  1. Admit 24 (8 each year of the 3-year program) HRSA GPE Ph.D. students to the CP Ph.D. program.
  2. Develop a telepsychology training clinic within the CP program to serve rural Iowa.
  3. Develop three seminars to provide specialized training in telepsychology practices and OUD and SUD prevention and treatment for psychology graduate students.
  4. Add 6 specialized slots in OUD and SUD prevention and treatment at existing sites and develop two new partnerships/practicum sites, at minimum, in rural MUCs to provide experiential training in OUD and SUD prevention and treatment and telepsychology to graduate psychology students.

D. Martin Kivlighan III (Ph.D., University of Wisconsin-Madison) is serving as the project Principal Investigator (PI). Kivlighan is an assistant professor in the CP program at the UI. His main area of research and practice include psychotherapy process and outcome. His expertise in psychotherapy will enable the team to provide extensive training on evidence-based psychotherapy practices and research. Kivlighan serves as the practicum coordinator for the CP program and has strong partnerships and relations with UIHC, the VA hospital, and other community and rural behavioral health clinics. Kivlighan serves as the admissions coordinator and has expertise in recruiting graduate psychology students that will contribute to the success and sustainability of this project.

Saba Ali (Ph.D., University of Oregon) is serving as a co-investigator. Ali is a full professor in the CP Program at the UI. She is the director of Interdisciplinary Consortium for Applied Research in Education (ICARE) in the College of Education at the UI. Ali grew up in rural West Virginia and leads a successful career intervention program with rural youth called Project HOPE. Her research expertise and publications focus on career development with rural underrepresented youth, poverty, and social class. Ali has over thirteen years of supervision experience, in which she provides individual supervision to CP doctoral students completing practicum. Ali has served as PI and co-PI on numerous grants. She is the PI on BHWET Professional Track, Integrating Behavioral Health into Rural Medicine, which provides training efforts and new field experiences and practicum opportunities for CP doctoral students to provide mental and behavioral health care to underserved populations with a focus on Latinos and Veterans living in rural eastern Iowa and western Illinois.  As PI, Ali has established 4 new sites and 12 new practicum slots. One of Ali’s primary roles will be to mentor Kivlighan through the process of effectively running a large training grant.

Jennifer Sanchez (Ph.D., University of Wisconsin-Madison) is serving as a co-investigator. Sánchez is Program Coordinator (Rehabilitation Counseling, Clinical Mental Health Counseling), Assistant Professor (Department of Rehabilitation & Counselor Education), and Faculty Co-Director (I-SERVE: Iowa Supports, Education, & Resources for Veterans & Enlisted) in the College of Education, and Assistant Professor in the Iowa Consortium for Substance Abuse Research and Evaluation, all at the UI. She has over 10 years of experience working with individuals with serious mental illness (SMI; e.g., PTSD, schizophrenia), cognitive disorders (e.g., TBI, Alzheimer’s), and substance use disorders (SUD; e.g., OUD), in particular co-occurring disorders in various capacities (e.g., clinical, educational, research). Her specializations include rehabilitation, evidence-based practice (EBP), and disparities among individuals from marginalized minority groups. Sánchez’s work settings range from inpatient psychiatric facilities, VA, and state hospitals and agencies, to K-12 schools, community mental health centers, and homeless shelters and transitional housing, in small rural to large metropolitan areas. A New York City native (–1998), Sánchez experienced the crack cocaine and HIV/AIDS epidemics firsthand, as well as the opioid and HIV epidemics in south Florida (1998–2010), and the opioid epidemics in Wisconsin (2010–2013), Texas (2013–2016), and now Iowa (2016–). Her current line of research centers on factors that promote recovery, community integration, and quality of life (QOL) of individuals with SMI and SUD. She has co-edited 2 special issues, published 25 peer-reviewed articles, and presented over 75 concurrent and poster sessions at local, state, national, regional, and international venues. As an early career professional, Sánchez has already received over $650,000 in funding as PI, Co-PI, or Consultant through various university, foundation, and federal agencies, to support her ongoing research, training, and outreach projects. Her clinical expertise (e.g., OUD), professional training (e.g., EBP), and personal background (e.g., bilingual Spanish) make her excellently suited to assist with this project.

CP Faculty will provide additional support for this project. Barry Schreier, Ph.D., Charles Bermingham, Ph.D., Stacey McElroy-Hetzel, Ph.D., and Megan Foley-Nicpon, Ph.D. are core faculty in the CP program and will provide invaluable support for the success of this project. This project will be further supported by clinical supervisors and adjunct faculty that provide experiential training opportunities for our CP students. The College of Education and Department will provide support for this project, and have a positive record of supporting other training grants with the CP program, such as the BHWET Professional Track, Integrating Behavioral Health into Rural Medicine.

Duhita Mahatmya (Ph.D., Iowa State University) is serving as the evaluator for this project.  Mahatmya serves as the primary methodologist on multi-disciplinary research teams in the College of Education.  As a Research Scientist, she has led and managed multiple projects assessing K-12 and college student development. This work involved analyzing national survey data, collecting and analyzing multi-institutional and classroom-level assessments for predictors of student success, and overseeing institutional assessment protocols. She brings extensive experiences in research design, data analysis, and institutional assessment, and is highly adept at creating and executing evaluation protocols.

Marie Adams
CP Program Year: 5th

My clinical interests include multicultural psychology, working within integrated behavioral health systems, improving rural access to mental health services, and working with underrepresented or vulnerable populations, such as immigrants and refugees. 

Christopher Anders
CP Program Year: 2nd

I am most interested in supporting the LGBTQIA+ community who live in rural areas and do not have access to mental health resources. Constructing creative solutions to accessing mental health resources, especially for those who hold intersecting marginalized identities in geographical areas without support, is an important role for me as a queer therapist, and a role that all psychologists can hold.

Mallory Bolenbaugh
CP Program Year: 5th

My clinical interests include health psychology, specifically in terms of how physical health impacts mental health and vice versa. I hope to use my training within the GPE program to help underserved, underrepresented populations in Iowa.

Shannon Stuart-Maver
CP Program Year: 3rd

Jason Wang
CP Program Year: 3rd

Cara Wienkes
CP Program Year: 5th

Through the HRSA GPE program, my hope is to continue to build and strengthen relationships with rural communities to provide increased access to behavioral health services. I appreciate the opportunity to integrate telepsychology services and increase my understanding of working with individuals with substance use disorders. After establishing community partnerships prior, I am now even more more passionate about serving and working with undeserved populations.

Alyssa Zwicker
CP Program Year: 6th

I am interested in the GPE program because I seek to understand the foundation of the opioid crisis, as well as explore effective internvetions. Specifically, I am drawn to working with individuals who live in rural settings and have unique needs and barriers in the opioid epidemic.

Plan of Study for the OUD/SUD and Telepsychology Specialty Track for Ph.D. Students (Note: instructors may be subject to change.)

 

Year 1

First Semester

  • Telepsychology Seminar – 1 credit
    Description: This course will focus on providing students with a breadth of knowledge in the utility and effectiveness of telepsychology, as well as knowledge of telepsychology models, best practices, and ethics. Course Instructors: Martin Kivlighan, Ph.D.
  • Weekly Meetings with Project Director: Students will meet once a week with the project director to discuss coursework, planning, concerns, and other issues related to the specialty track.

Second Semester

  • Integrated Health Service Provision – 3 credits (mandatory)
    Description: This course will focus on training students to work collaboratively with health professionals to accomplish integrative service provision for the Latino and veteran populations. This will be team-taught by a professor in medicine and a professor in CP. Course Instructors: Megan Foley Nicpon, Ph.D. and Family Medicine (Denise Martinez)
  • OUD and SUD Prevention and Treatment Seminar – 1 credit
    Description: This course will focus on training students in substance use disorders, etiology, prevalence, and treatment within rural communities. Specifically, this course will focus on substance use and treatment with an emphasis on opioid use disorder (OUD) and treatment. Course Instructors:  Jennifer Sanchez, Ph.D.
  • Practicum: Students will complete a one-semester practicum with a rural health care clinic in an MUC through the telepsychology training clinic in the CP program at UI.
  • Supervision: Students will meet once a week for an hour with a licensed psychologist to receive clinical supervision.
  • Weekly Meetings with Project Director: Students will meet once a week with project directors to discuss coursework, planning, concerns, and other issues related to the specialty track.

Year 2

  • Practicum: HRSA GPE Students will complete a one-year long practicum with specialized training in OUD and SUD prevention and treatment for rural populations. HRSA GPE students will spend 25% of their time on OUD prevention and treatment.
  • Supervision: Students will meet once a week for an hour with a licensed psychologist to receive clinical supervision.

First Semester

  • Rural Cultural Competence Seminar - 1 credit 
    Description: This course will focus on providing students information on cultural competence standards, empirical literature, and best practices. Students will review literature on cultural competence with rural communities. Course Instructor: Saba Ali, Ph.D.
  • Advanced Practicum in Counseling Psychology - 3 credits
    Description: This course focuses on providing group supervision for students enrolled in practicum classes and involves case staffing and didactic instruction. Course Instructor: CP Faculty

Second Semester

  • Advanced Practicum in Counseling - 3 credits
    Description: This course focuses on providing group supervision for students enrolled in practicum classes and involves case staffing and didactic instruction. Course Instructor: CP Faculty

Year 3

First and Second Semester

  • Advanced Practicum in Counseling Psychology – 3 credits 
    Description: This course focuses on providing group supervision for students enrolled in practicum classes and involves case staffing and didactic instruction.

Please note that the contact information listed for project personnel or fellows is not intended to serve as an emergency connection to mental health services. Email is not be used for urgent or emergency messages. If you are experiencing an emergency, please dial 911 now.

Other supplemental resources that may be helpful include the following:

Resources regarding rural health data, outcomes, and links to professional assistance include the following: