32 high school students to participate in behavioral health conference

Aimed at addressing shortage of behavioral health professionals in Nebraska

WHAT: The Behavioral Health Education Center of Nebraska (BHECN) is holding a conference this weekend for high school students possibly considering a career in behavioral health. Thirty-two students from around the state will participate in the conference (see list below).

The conference – the 1st BHECN Ambassador Program: High School Conference – is one of the key ways that BHECN is trying to meet its mission of addressing the shortage of behavioral health professionals in Nebraska.

BHECN hopes to develop a behavioral health workforce for rural Nebraska by investing in students from rural Nebraska and connecting them with information and resources to explore behavioral health careers.

BHECN is putting together a group of faculty from Chadron State College, UNMC, UNO, UNK and UNL, along with trainees and providers representing diverse behavioral health and substance abuse professions.

WHEN: The conference will run from 7 to 9 p.m. on Friday, April 12, and from 8:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, April 13.

WHERE: Younes Conference Center, 416 W. Talmadge Rd., Kearney

WHO: The following people will be available for media interviews:

Howard Liu, M.D., a child psychiatrist for the University of Nebraska Medical Center and BHECN medical director, cell: 734-717-1495.

Ann Kraft, conference coordinator, cell: 402-490-2963.

In addition, some of the students also will be available for interviews.

Here’s a list of the students attending by home town and high school:

Alma -- Alma High School:  Mackenzie Millard

Beatrice -- Beatrice High School; Brooke Buss

Crawford -- Crawford High School; Jancee Byers

Gordon -- Gordon Rushville High School; Destiny Fortin

Grand Island -- Grand Island Senior High; Josh Cleveland and Brandi Kirk

Harrison -- Sioux County High School; Jonny Dunn and John Murphy

Hastings -- Hastings Senior High School; Carl Babcock and Sierra Edmisten

Hemingford --Hemingford High School; Kaitlyn Bergfield and Paige Phillips

Holdrege -- Holdrege High School; Heather Smith

Kearney – from Kearney Catholic High School; Jerilynn Clyne, Lauren Messbarger, Kayla Shundoff, and Nick Theis:   from Kearney High School; Tiffany Gawrych, Madelyn George, Carleen Glenn, Daniela González Nuño, Tina Javidi, Grace Manley, and Griffin Mims

Kimball -- Kimball Jr/Sr High School; Darbi Klinkhammer

Newport -- Keya Paha County High School; Sarah Connell

Norfolk -- Norfolk Public High School; Abby Stewart

North Platte -- North Platte High School; Anna Baltz

Omaha -- Millard North High School; Emily Kraft

Sutherland -- Sutherland High School; Katelyn Hecht

York -- York High School; Alexis Lynn Hromadka, and Carlie Pickrel

For more information on BHECN, go to www.unmc.edu/bhecn.




Tom O'Connor
UNMC Public Relations
(402) 559-4690 (office)
(402) 650-7063 (cell)