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College of Arts & Sciences
Department of Psychology


PCORI Grant Awarded to The School Mental Health Team Led by Dr. Mark Weist

University of South Carolina (USC) Department of Psychology School Mental Health Team Approved for a $247,168 Engagement Award by the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute

The USC School Mental Health Team in the Department of Psychology has been approved for a Eugene Washington PCORI Engagement Award by the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) to support school behavioral health.  Professor Mark D. Weist, Ph.D. will lead the engagement project within the School Mental Health Team (SMHT) of the USC Department of Psychology, with co-director, Bob Stevens, Ph.D. providing leadership of the project through his role as director of the SC Association for Positive Behavior Support Network (APBSN).  The project will focus on strengthening the SC School Behavioral Health Community through two annual conferences and multiple research forums coordinating training, dissemination, and research efforts in collaboration with patients/families and other stakeholders.  In addition to USC’s SMHT, grant leadership will include representatives from the state’s Department of Education, Department of Mental Health, Medical University of SC, Federation of Families, the APBSN, and most importantly, families/students.   The goal for dissemination activities will be to increase opportunities for patients and stakeholders to actively engage in improving school mental and behavioral health in SC schools using research as a vehicle. Efforts will focus on youth-serving systems working together with researchers to implement and expand high quality research-based school behavioral health (SBH) programs throughout the state and region, with significance for national efforts on the same.