Clark State College has been awarded $245,842 from the Ohio Department of Education’s (ODE) Great Minds Fellowship; a State of Ohio initiative led by Governor Mike DeWine and a and partnership between Ohio Mental Health and Addiction Services and ODE.
The Fellowship program is available to students within two years of graduating with degrees or certificates in social work, marriage and family therapy, mental health counseling, psychiatric/mental health nursing, and substance abuse/addiction counseling.
The Great Minds Fellowship is ideal for students looking to make a difference and contribute to growing Ohio’s behavioral health workforce. The program will help students jump start a successful future in their chosen career path while allowing communities across Ohio to better care for those living with mental health and substance abuse disorders.
“Clark State has been a leader in training the social work, addiction studies, and mental health workforce, and these scholarship monies will continue to expand the pool of qualified individuals who will help treat those in our communities who need counseling and treatment,” said Dr. Jo Alice Blondin, president of Clark State. “We are very proud of our suite of programs in these areas and recognize that mental health is critical to a healthy workforce.”
Clark State began offering a baccalaureate degree in Addiction and Integrated Treatment Studies in 2022; one of the college’s three available 4-year degrees.
Great Minds Fellows at participating colleges and universities will be eligible for up to $10,000 during their undergraduate and graduate studies for scholarship opportunities to assist with the costs of obtaining their degrees or certificates; paid internships at one of Ohio’s Community Behavioral Health Centers (CBHC) at the undergraduate and graduate levels; and the costs of required license and certification preparation and exams (and other costs related to the degree or certificate). Funding will be available beginning in the fall 2023 semester.
“Clark State’s tireless work in these critical training areas has been recognized by the administration through this grant. We are deeply grateful to Gov. DeWine, Lt. Gov. Husted,
ODE Chancellor Gardner, and OMHAS Director Lori Criss,” said Blondin.”
Eligible students should be ready to enter the behavioral healthcare workforce in the next one to two years and demonstrate a commitment to serving in Community Behavioral Health Centers (CHBCs), according to federal guidelines for use of these funds.
"The health and success of Ohio’s families and communities depends on our ability to recruit, train, and retain the best talent to ensure Ohio has the most robust behavioral health workforce possible,” said Ohio Governor Mike DeWine. “Behavioral health care workers are a valued and vital part of our healthcare system, and our efforts today are focused on helping to quickly infuse more qualified professionals into behavioral health care workplaces throughout the state. I look forward to working with the General Assembly, Ohio’s providers, and our colleges and universities on this innovative plan.”