Thursday, June 8th

10:45 - 11:45 AM

Sharing Our Strengths: Applying Outreach to Address Islamophobia on

College Campuses

Engin Ege, Ph.D. - Virginia Commonwealth University


Outreach and consultation practices can serve as valuable tools to address the presence of Islamophobia and misinformation regarding Islam on a college campus. Furthermore, college counseling centers are in a unique position to contribute to the sense of safety and support for Muslim students, to address subtle and overt forms of Islamophobia, and to impact campus climate through visibility of partnerships and educational opportunities for faculty, staff, and students alike. This presentation will highlight successful collaborative outreach efforts designed for Muslim students (e.g., the implementation of an Arab, Middle Eastern, and North African student support group) as well as the broader campus community (e.g., “Celebrating Women in Islam,” an event for Women’s History Month, done in collaboration with the Muslim Student Association and the Office Of Multicultural Student Affairs). Additionally, the presenter will review notable contributions from the perspective of a clinician while serving on a campus-wide Muslim Advocacy Task Force. Finally, time will be allotted for brainstorming with attendees possible campus collaborations and areas of growth in serving Muslim students and/or addressing Islamophobia on their respective campuses.


  • Recognize how outreach resources at college counseling centers can be applied to support marginalized student populations on campus.
  • Understand the consultative value of counseling psychologists in addressing Muslim student experiences on campus through engagement in a campus-wide task force.
  • Identify various campus partners with whom to collaborate with on issues related to Islamophobia and/or supporting Muslim students on campus.

    Introducing The RAT Packs Sophomore Release: Presenting the second year of the National Outreach Survey data findings

Teresa Michaelson-Chmelir, Ph.D., University of Central Florida, Forrest Seymour, MSW, LICSW, Keene State College and Chris Meno, Ph.D., Indiana University


While outreach is a staple of the work that counseling centers offer, until recently we haven’t had much benchmarking data to help ground and guide the details of our work. At times, this lack of data has hindered the advancement and value of outreach services; particularly around funding and staff resources. In this program, the AUCCCO Research and Assessment Team will share the data from the 2017 National Outreach Survey and compare the results from its debut release in 2016. The presenters will review particular sections of the survey to better inform the work, in the areas of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, Assessment and Evaluation and of other various areas around operational trends. Discussion will be invited toward identifying benchmarks for outreach strategic planning, advocating for outreach leaders, and promoting the value of outreach work in college counseling centers.


  • Participants will gain knowledge on counseling center structures regarding outreach, (i.e., who are the staff providing the programs, what percentage of center time is involved in outreach, etc.).
  • Participants will gain knowledge on how different centers define outreach activities.
  • Participants will gain knowledge regarding current trends in outreach programming services across different counseling centers.
  • Participants will gain knowledge around how other counseling centers promote inclusive and welcoming programs to all student communities of various identities.
  • Participants will gain knowledge from the review and comparison of the 2016 data with the 2017 data.

    Creating Inclusive and Accessible Outreach Utilizing Universal Design

Christy Hutton, Ph.D. and Ashley Brickley, M.A.E.

University of Missouri

As outreach professionals we have a responsibility to design programs and materials that are inclusive and accessible to all. Approaching outreach from a Universal Design perspective allows us to develop programs and materials that are inherently accessible to students. Universal Design looks at access and inclusion on the front end of development, allowing us to identify and remove potential barriers to student engagement. This presentation will provide a general overview of the key concepts of Universal Design and explore how these concepts can be utilized to enhance outreach. We will consider equity and flexibility in how participants take in, understand, and synthesize information, and discuss physical and communication access. We will address how to create presentations, resource/marketing materials consistent with Universal Design to increase accessibility for all students on your campus. Learning to work from a Universal Design perspective enhances our outreach efforts making them easy to engage with for every student on our campuses.


  • Participants will be able to recognize how Universal Design applies to all that we do.
  • Participants will be able to identify barriers to student engagement.
  • Participants will be able to utilize Universal Design concepts in outreach planning.
  • Participants will be able to utilize resources to develop accessible presentations, videos, and resource materials.

    International Student Outreach from A Social Justice Perspective/ Outreach with international students in the current political climate

Yuhong He, Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania, Shraddha Niphadkar, Ph.D., University of Missouri-Columbia and Tong-An “Fred” Shueh, Ph.D., Miami University


International students are an ever-growing student population on college campuses in the U.S. These students, due to their immigration status and diverse social-cultural-political backgrounds, present with unique challenges and needs. Current political climate in the U.S. has no doubt caused many of them a significant amount of distress. More than ever before, mental health professionals need to reach out to this group of students. This presentation will a) review current trends of international students’ mental health issues including common presenting concerns seen at counseling centers, b) discuss the importance of approaching international student outreach and prevention from a social justice perspective, c) provide two counseling centers’ outreach efforts targeting international students as examples for outreach programming ideas, and d) discuss collaboration with other campus partners in this endeavor.

Outreach to international students often involves presentations on adjustment to the U.S. culture, conducting focus groups to assess their needs, and facilitating mentoring programs. However, this population can be difficult to reach out to because of the diverse nature of this group, a lack of knowledge about the importance of mental health and the stigma surrounding mental health help seeking frequently seen in this group. Therefore, events for international students put up by the counseling center on campus may often be poorly attended. This can be disheartening and on campuses with smaller outreach budgets, it could mean a dwindling in the efforts to reach out to this group. The current political climate further complicates the situation as the distrust for the Trump administration and concern for their personal safety is high among international students. Many universities are concerned about how to make their campuses feel safe and welcoming for their current and future international students. Therefore, we will conduct a discussion about the challenges and successes in reaching out to this population as well as how we can continue to be allies to this vulnerable group in the current political scenario.


  • Identify important multicultural and social justice factors regarding international students’ issues.
  • Integrate multiculturally sensitive approaches into outreach and prevention programming for international students.
  • Apply on-campus collaboration strategies when implementing outreach programs for international students.
  • Describe the specific challenges that counseling center staff face or foresee on their campuses, especially in the current political climate, as well as any successes that they may have had with providing outreach for international students.
  • Assess the impact of the counseling center staff’s beliefs and assumptions about international students on the outreach work that they do, or wish to do, with this population.
  • Assess how the existing ally development activities in different counseling centers could be used for developing allies for this vulnerable population.

1:30 - 2:30 PM

Let’s Talk Rocks the Outreach Charts: The Journey

Sharon Mier, Psy.D., Private Practice, Matthew S. Boone, LCSW, University of Arkansas at Little Rock, Wai-Kwong Wong, Ph.D., Cornell University, Sudha Wadhwani, Psy.D., Montclair State University, Robin McAleese, MS, CAS, LMHC SUNY Oswego, Erica Weathers, LICSW, Mount Holyoke College and Megan M. Marks, Ph.D., University of Kentucky  


The Let’s Talk walk-in support and consultation program has rocked university campuses across the country for the past 10+ years. This innovative program has climbed the charts as an increasing number of universities have strived to increase access to support for underserved students who were not utilizing traditional counseling services. Let’s Talk has served to reach students in their cultural worlds, in the campus community, where they study, work, live, and engage, breaking down the barriers and counseling center walls to reach students. This presentation will explore the journey of Let’s Talk, developed by Cornell University and now utilized by over 50 universities across the country. Representatives from Cornell and a range of universities who have implemented Let’s Talk programs will share the histories of establishing their Let’s Talk sites and the decisions and logistics along the way (e.g., choice of locations, polices/procedures, marketing, confidentiality, paperwork/documentation). Presenters aim to create a forum for Let’s Talk groupies to connect and share challenges and opportunities they have experienced at their respective universities, while also sharing their experiences with potential fans who may wish to bring Let’s Talk to their university campuses.


  • Gain knowledge of the history, mission, and purpose of Let’s Talk in reaching underserved students in increasing access to support in students’ cultural worlds.
  • Gain knowledge on the best practices for reaching underserved students.
  • Connect and learn from other Let’s Talk providers across university settings
  • Identify logistical considerations of starting a Let’s Talk program on campus (e.g., choice of locations, polices/procedures, marketing, confidentiality, paperwork/documentation).
  • Develop strategies to start Let’s Talk programs on their respective campuses (e.g., choice of locations, polices/procedures, marketing, confidentiality, paperwork/ documentation).

Rock Around the Workshop: Establishing a sustainable and impactful psychoeducational program

Harry Warner, M.A. - The Ohio State University


Psycho-educational workshops are an efficient means of disseminating information regarding preventative strategies for managing stress and other concerns with which students present. However, it is difficult at times to create buy-in from students to attend these programs. This session will provide comprehensive strategies to increase attendance and establish a meaningful workshop program. The simple strategies presented here resulted in a 274% increase in workshop attendance in the first year of implementation at The Ohio State University. Presenter will consider needs of both college and university settings and participants will be able to discuss individual needs and barriers. Attendees will discuss perceived barriers to increasing attendance. Lastly, the presenter will provide pre-packaged workshop templates to adapt on home campuses. Attendees will consider factors related to planning, marketing, implementation, and evaluation of programming. Specific attention will be given to tailoring programs to attend to aspects of diversity, inclusion, and equity. This presentation will use Power Point, group discussion, and provision of concrete take-home resources.


  • Describe how the college student population may benefit from a psychoeducational workshop program.
  • Plan for a comprehensive workshop program that meets the needs of a diverse student population.
  • Analyze logistical needs respective to home campus environments and discuss ways to meet challenges to implementation.

Discovering USA: A Success story of Outreach Program for International Students

Qianhui Zhang, Ph.D. and Monika Gutkowska, Psy.D, CGP - Northwestern University


This presentation focuses on effective programming to address international students’ unique challenges in their adjustment process. This presentation will discuss process of the development and implementation of a year-long weekly semi-structured lunch discussion series to address the specific needs of international students. It will address the process of initial need assessment and consultation with stakeholders, which inform the program goals and learning objectives: facilitating adjustment of international students and Integration within the campus community. The first goal of facilitating adjustment process was accomplished by providing psychoeducation and experiential learning on the academic, social, and general life adjustment on campus. The second goal of increasing integration was accomplished by facilitating the interaction within various groups of international students, as well as promoting mutual learning between international students and other campus partners and student groups. The presenters will go into details about the design and rationale of curriculum topics, content, and format as well as obtaining administrative and financial support. Lastly, the presenters will discuss the development and implementation of an ongoing multi-method assessment process to monitor program effectiveness. Current preliminary data will be shared and discussed to illustrate the strengths and challenges of the program.


  • Participants will be able to describe content of Discovering USA series and rationale for each module
  • Participants will be able to identify specific challenges and strengths of the program
  • Participants will be able to identify ways to adapt the program to their home institutes

    Reaching in to Reach Out: Creating a Mechanism for Providing Culturally Responsive Care

Brandi Pritchett-Johnson, Ph.D., The Diane Morgan Group, Zully Rivera-Ramos, Ph.D., University of Florida and Gizem Toska, Ph.D., University of Florida


Counseling psychology's operationalization of multicultural competence must be grounded in a commitment to social justice (Vera and Spleight, 2003). On common approach to providing justice orientated or culturally adaptive therapeutic care is by engaging in outreach efforts. Reaching in to Reach Out: Creating a Mechanism for Providing Culturally Responsive Care introduces a dynamic and innovative social justice initiative (ASPIRE) within the University of Florida Counseling and Wellness Center. While highlighting this outreach initiative is a critical component to the proposed presentation, emphasis will be on engaging the presentation attendees in first evaluating the culture of their counseling center before discussing the primary conditions needed to create or strengthen a justice oriented outreach initiative of their own. Focus will be on: 1. Re-framing the purpose and clinical utility of outreach, 2. Creating a center climate best prepared to provide culturally responsive care, and 3. Practical strategies for helping the helpers (mental health providers).


  • Assess and critique current setting/center climate (including strengths and limitations both individually and organizationally)
  • List specific "encouragers" (statements/philosophies) that serve to strengthen center cultural climate
  • List up to three actionable next steps toward the implementation/strengthening of a culturally responsive outreach initiative 

2:45 - 3:45 PM

Rock Your Body Positive: Amplifying and Remixing Eating Disorder Outreach

Patricia Y. O'Malley, Psy.D. - University of Michigan


University of Michigan’s CAPS has a long history of providing outreach programming in recognition of National Eating Disorders Awareness Week. In the past three years, this outreach has amplified. The first year playlist included a “Love your Selfie” tabling and a staff-created body positive dance video. Year two pumped up the volume with a mindful eating ice-cream social, body image workshop, and a co-created and co-sponsored body positive exercise class. Year three remixed the mindful eating ice cream social to incorporate a “Write a Valentine to Your Body” tabling event and remastered the exercise class with the new theme “Celebrate Your Body through Movement.” New to the scene this year were an empowerment yoga class instructed by a CAPS staff member, participation in a Twitter panel, and co-sponsorship of a “Food for Thought” discussion at a lunch series for women of color. In this presentation, the development and evolution of outreach programming for NEDA week at UM CAPS will be highlighted, followed by sharing of ideas, tips on engaging with students and trainees, and collaborating with campus and community partners. The presentation will also discuss CAPS’ ongoing commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion, especially related to outreach design and marketing.


Based on this program, participants will

  • discover innovative ideas for ED outreach;
  • identify resources for ED outreach programming;
  • explore strategies to make ED programming inclusive;
  • trouble shoot potential challenges and brainstorm ways to problem solve in their own center and campus community.

    When who you are matters: Responding to social identity based outreach requests

Batsirai Bvunzawabaya, Ph.D., Matthew Poon, Psy.D., Soumya Madabhushi, Ph.D. and Yuhong He, Ph.D. - University of Pennsylvania


Outreach requests based on the social identities of the mental health provider seem to be increasing as social activism on college campuses has risen. Our training as mental health professionals has traditionally included conceptualizing our role inside the therapy room to be somewhat separate from who we are outside of that space. However, outreach work requires us to step out of the therapeutic space and engage with students in a distinctive manner, especially as our social identities are central to the work that we are doing. In forming liaison relationships on campus, there may be some assumptions about how we identify which subsequently results in us having to decide how much to self-disclose. This presentation will: a) explore the nature of these social identity based outreach requests, b) the benefits and challenges that arise in our roles as therapist and outreach provider, c) the use of social identity self-disclosure and d) the emotional impact of participating in outreach that closely relates to our privileged and marginalized identities. This presentation will provide examples of how we are responding to the aforementioned outreach requests while balancing the demands of working at an institution with immense privilege and unique challenges.


  • Describe outreach requests based on social identities.
  • List some challenges and benefits to engaging in outreach activities that involve our social identities.
  • Discuss the personal implications of disclosing one’s social identities when engaging in outreach work.
  • Demonstrate examples of successful outreach work that focuses on the relevance of the mental health providers’ social identities.

    Student Perspectives on Mental Health: A Public Health Collaboration

Presenter information

Jennie L. Bingham, Ph.D., Cheryl L. Garn, Ph.D., AliceAnn Crandall, Ph.D., MPH, Jonathan C. Cox, Ph.D. and Taylor McLean, (B.S. candidate), Sydney Gibbons,  (B.S. candidate) - Brigham Young University


Nation-wide an increasing number of students seek counseling center services. However, the majority of college counseling centers find themselves under-resourced (Gallagher, 2012), and outreach professionals often struggle to balance prevention efforts with the demand for therapy. Applying a public health model to prevention is one creative way to intervene on a campus-wide level; however, information about how to best assess needs and reach students is sparse and may vary from one campus to another. This program will present one way a counseling center has attempted to assess needs on campus through a collaboration with Public Health faculty and students in two sections of a Program Planning class. We will discuss results of 850 campus community members’ responses to surveys on mental health awareness and needs, ideas for interventions created by students, as well as tips for applying similar projects on other campuses. Findings address awareness of services, barriers, top topics of interest to students, and preferred mediums for receiving information. Finally, we will discuss lessons we learned and ways that attendees can capitalize on the unique strengths of mental health professionals and public health faculty in mentoring students and designing initiatives on their own campuses.


  • Participants will be able to articulate the two benefits of collaborating with faculty on campus to conduct needs assessments and create programming
  • Participants will be able to list the top three barriers to receiving mental health care as identified by students.
  • Participants will identify one step they can take to apply a public health faculty-counseling center collaboration on their campus.

    Absolute Beginners: Cal Lutheran’s New Release

Beth Turner, Psy.D. - California Lutheran University


Beginning a career, getting licensed, and balancing work demands are challenging enough. Throw in being the first outreach coordinator for a university as a first-time outreach coordinator, and that spells E-X-C-I-T-I-N-G and D-A-U-N-T-I-N-G! This presentation explores the process of developing an outreach coordinator position within a small university setting. This session will provide a step-by-step account of an early career professional’s journey in developing a comprehensive outreach program. Included are the unique rewards and challenges that come with being an absolute beginner faced with the demands of establishing a formal outreach program. This discussion-based presentation seeks audience participation through wisdom, feedback, ideas, and stories that we can learn from and use to support each other.


  • Execute a needs assessment and design a formal outreach program.
  • Explain the benefits and rewards of providing outreach in a small university setting.
  • Anticipate and assess the challenges of outreach provision in a small university setting.

4:00 - 5:00 PM

The Greatest Hits (and Misses) Collection: A 10-Year Retrospective of One Director’s Efforts to Inspire and Innovate Outreach since the First Conference in Ann Arbor (with a critique from a staff member)

Brian Quigley, Ph.D. and Forrest Seymour, MSW, LICSW - Keene State College


After attending the first annual outreach conference in Ann Arbor back in 2008 (and the next 3) as a Director, I was inspired, excited, and determined to develop and provide innovative methods of programming and outreach on college campuses. Over the span of the next 10 years and at two separate institutions, a wide variety of methods toward creative outreach provision have been attempted including: creating varied administrative structures for outreach provision, developing skill-sets and motivating staff, acquiring/allocating resources, and building campus buy-in. Some of these efforts have been successful (the hits) whereas others not so much (the misses). In this unique presentation, two different perspectives (one a Director and the other a staff member) will be openly provided about these varied efforts over the years in order to evaluate these methods from both perspectives and their possible applicability to other institutions. Time also will be provided for asking questions of the presenters to further expand on their different perspectives, facilitating a large group discussion regarding the experiences of others on their campuses, and sharing ideas on ways to provide innovative outreach/programming on our campuses.


  • Develop models for the provision of innovative emotional well-being programming.
  • Identify effective strategies for staff participation in outreach/programming.
  • Develop strategic plans for building administrative support for outreach/programming on campus.
  • Identify resources and collaborations on campus to increase outreach/programming campus.

    You say you want a revolution: A proposed model for training faculty on responding to student needs in times of political and community-based bias and violence

Erica Lennon, Psy.D. - University of North Carolina at Charlotte


During a year filled with bias-motivated incidents, hate-based violence, and oppressive political rhetoric and actions, we have seen an increase in student trauma responses and an uptake in student activism on campus, including within classrooms. Faculty have consistently reported feeling unprepared to address the needs of students in their classroom, with many electing to be silent and not address it at all. This session will present a model utilized at UNC Charlotte for educating and equipping faculty to support students during and in the aftermath of these incidents and climate. Components of this model discussed will include ways to create partnerships of support with faculty, assisting academic affairs administration in standardizing and communicating expectations to faculty, and addressing common concerns faculty report including worry about “saying the wrong thing”, fear of retaliation for broaching these topics, and balancing personal and professional identities. Additionally, this model incorporates the development and implementation of an in-person training that includes psychoeducation regarding impact of these incidents on students, ways faculty can reach out directly to students, and ways faculty can minimize re-traumatization experiences by effectively structuring and managing classroom dialogues.


Following this session attendees will be able to:

  • Describe two processes for creating avenues of partnership with faculty.
  • Identify three important components of a faculty training focused on effective responses following a bias-motivated critical incident.
  • Describe how to address at least two common faculty concerns in directly addressing bias-motivated critical incidents in their classrooms.

    Rocking Social Media: Tips and Tricks for Increasing Your Social Media Presence Without Increasing Your Efforts

Nichole Evans, M.A. and Elora Orazio, MPH, CHES - University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign


This interactive workshop will discuss strategies for creating or enhancing a social media program for your center that limits potential liabilities, is time-efficient, and reaches and connects with students in ways that help them realize the importance of self-care and building coping skills. Specifically, we’ll discuss methods of finding and creating engaging content, resources available to save time and keep you organized in your social media efforts, how to build your audience on various social media platforms, and how to use available data to determine how successful social media efforts are.


  • Become more familiar with best practices in social media programs for college counseling centers.
  • Learn about resources available to make posting and measurement more efficient.
  • Brainstorm different kinds of content counseling centers can offer that will allow students to practice effective self-care and build resilience.

    Ally, Activist, or Advocate?: Challenges & Opportunities in Social Justice Outreach (combined presentation)

Sudha Wadhwani, Psy.D., Montclair State University, Priti Shah, Ph.D., Seton Hall University, Batsirai Bvunzawabaya, Ph.D. and Marian Reiff, LCSW, Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania


As outreach professionals, we are committed to social justice. We aim to “walk the walk”, by joining students’ multicultural worlds and providing a range of ongoing programs to increase access to support outside the box of our traditional counseling center walls. We require a coherent understanding of what it means to engage in advocacy and social justice work while also considering our role as therapist, activist, outreach provider and responder to critical incidents within the institution. The sociopolitical climate and critical incidents in the media inevitably impact our students’ well-being and our campus communities as a whole. Ultimately, we must be a part of the university community in order to create positive change within it – the university is also our client. As such, the role of counseling centers may vary across universities, depending on the administrative context and the multicultural and socio-political environment of the university itself. We hope this discussion will move towards creating guidelines for social justice outreach.  Presenters will discuss potential barriers and provide strategies to reach underserved students through ongoing programs as well as in response to critical incidents. They will also discuss programs to facilitate dialogue and provide support to the student community as a whole. Participants will have the opportunity to share their own challenges and strategies, leaving with action steps to implement social justice oriented outreach programs and navigate potential challenges at their respective universities.


·         Identify and recognize the importance of on-going social justice oriented programs.

·         Learn strategies to implement social justice programs, respond to critical incidents, and navigate potential challenges.

·         Share their own challenges and strategies in providing outreach to marginalized groups on their campuses and responding to critical incidents, particularly within the current sociopolitical climate.

·         Leave with action steps to implement social justice oriented outreach programs at their respective universities.

The Association For University and College Counseling Center Outreach
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