|School of Social Policy & Practice: Three-Year Grant for Training in Behavioral Health Care
February 12, 2013,
Volume 59, No. 21
The US Department of Health and Human Services’ Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) has awarded the Center for Mental Health & Aging at the Penn School of Social Policy & Practice (SP2) a three-year, $479,000 grant to support social work education of future behavioral health care providers.
In partnership with the Philadelphia Veteran’s Administration, the National Center for Homeless Research and community-based agencies for the homeless, SP2 will establish the Program in Mental Health Education Assessment, Recovery, and Leadership for Social Workers (PEARLS). The project will train SP2 graduate students committed to working in the behavioral health sector to provide integrated mental health care for veterans, military families and the homeless in underserved communities.
Specifically, SP2 will develop an integrated classroom-field experience for MSW students, including a standardized patient training component with an explicit focus on services for veterans and their families struggling with mental health challenges.
“The PEARLS program will develop an academic-community partnership across disciplines at Penn, at the Philadelphia VA Medical Center and with experienced local agency professionals, providing graduate students with state-of-the-art training in integrated behavioral health care,” said Dr. Zvi D. Gellis, project director and associate professor in SP2.
The HRSA funding was made available under the Affordable Care Act and places the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Social Policy & Practice at the forefront of education in integrated behavioral health care. The project will involve several Penn faculty members, including Dr. Phyllis Solomon, Dr. Irene Wong and Dr. Dennis Culhane.