Archived News | Return to News Center

Sept. 21, 2005

ULM to Host Disaster Intervention Training

ULM will host a disaster-intervention training course for mental health professionals and community members working with those affected by Hurricane Katrina. Leading the course will be Certified Trauma Specialist Nancy Rich of Metro State University in Denver, CO. Rich is a Licensed Professional Counselor with 33 years of experience in the emergency mental health field.

The 14-hour course is set for Monday and Tuesday, Sept. 26-27, 8 a.m.-5 p.m. at the ULM Alumni Center. The course will include a description of factors that might affect the intensity of the reactions in various individuals, the stress response, disaster intervention, stages of disasters and a variety of treatment interventions.

Specific topics to be addressed include: basic stress, disaster phases, children and trauma, and disaster interventions as well as treatment of post-traumatic stress disorder.

A fee of $30 per person will be charged to help defray the costs of lunch, refreshments, and materials. Certificates will be provided for those receiving continuing education units. The Louisiana Counseling Association has approved the course for continuing education, and ULM is a continuing education provider for CEUs for the NBCC (National Board of Certified Counselors).

The Louisiana Counseling Association is approved by the National Board of Certified Counselors to offer continuing education for Louisiana Licensed Professional Counselors and Nationally Certified Counselors. It is the responsibility of the provider of this program to abide by the LCA and NBCC Continuing Education Guidelines. This program meets the criteria 5.0 hours of continuing education credit for Louisiana Professional Counselors and National Certified Counselors according to LCA and NBCC provider policy.

Those wishing to attend must RSVP by calling 342-1010 by noon on Friday, Sept. 23. Reservations are required and early reservations are encouraged due to limited class size.

Denise Pani, volunteer with the relief center at ULM, says, "ULM is offering this class as a way to help people better understand how to deal with the long-term effects of disaster and stress. Dealing with the psychological effects of the hurricane--including displacement, loss of family members, and just starting over--will be a massive undertaking. The course will help mental health professionals and others to be proactive, rather than reactive."

"We realize this is a short notice for a program that will be held next week, but we still hope to have a high turnout," said Pani.

Rich is the Director of Trauma Management Consultants, a firm that responds to businesses after a critical incident. She is the Clinical Coordinator of the Mayflower Critical Incident Stress Debriefing team in Denver, a volunteer team in that responds to emergency personnel after critical incidents. She also teaches college classes in victim's assistance, human services and criminal justice, as well as law enforcement academies and paramedic schools.

Rich has lectured and consulted nationally and internationally on first responder stress, behavioral emergencies, crisis intervention, post traumatic stress disorder, emotional response to terrorism, and disaster psychology. In addition, she has written articles and is co-author and co-producer of the video, "Critical Incident Stress: Managing the Impact."

Rich has received awards from the American Critical Incident Stress Foundation and the International Critical Incident Stress Foundation for outstanding contributions in the field, appeared on NBC's TODAY SHOW as an expert in mass psychic trauma, and has consulted with Tipper Gore and the Office of the Emir of Kuwait following the Gulf War. She has worked on hundreds of critical incidents including plane crashes the shootings at Columbine High School, the Oklahoma City bombing, and 9/11.

PLEASE NOTE: Some links and e-mail addresses in these archived news stories may no longer work, and some content may include events which are no longer relevent, or reference individuals and/or organizations no longer associated with ULM.