What is Behavior Health and Human Services?
The Behavior Health and Human Services program is designed to provide students with a comprehensive understanding of the complexities surrounding human behavior, mental health, and social well-being. This program offers a multidisciplinary approach that combines psychology, sociology, counseling, and social work principles to equip students with the skills and knowledge to support individuals and communities in achieving optimal mental and emotional health.
The Behavior Health and Human Services program will partner with local state and federal agencies, community programs, and higher education agencies of the Willamette Valley to prepare our students for our changing world.
Behavioral health is a fundamental aspect of human well-being. Just as physical health is vital for leading a fulfilling life, mental health plays a crucial role in our overall happiness, quality of life, and ability to cope with challenges. Addressing behavioral health is crucial on a global scale. Behavioral health issues affect people of all ages, backgrounds, and cultures, making it a universal concern that requires attention, resources, as well as caring, knowledgeable, and well-trained professionals.
The demand for behavioral health professionals is increasing. By entering into the behavioral health and human services industry, our students contribute to a pressing societal need. They will be prepared to pursue careers in a variety of settings, including mental health agencies, social service organizations, substance abuse treatment centers, schools, hospitals, in-home health care, and community outreach programs. The program equips students with the necessary skills for professional practice and also fosters a deep commitment to promoting the well-being and mental health of individuals and communities.
Students in the BHHS program will:
- Gain a deep understanding of the theoretical foundations of behavioral health, including the study of human development, psychology theories, and sociocultural influences on behavior
- Develop essential counseling skills, such as active listening, empathy, rapport-building, and effective communication, to provide support to individuals facing emotional challenges
- Explore evidence-based interventions and therapeutic approaches used to address a wide range of behavioral and mental health issues, including cognitive behavioral therapy, motivational interviewing, and dialectical behavior therapy
- Study the causes and consequences of substance abuse and addiction, and learn strategies for prevention, intervention, and treatment within a harm reduction framework
- Acquire skills in crisis assessment and management, including suicide prevention, de-escalation techniques, and supporting individuals in times of acute emotional distress
- Understand group dynamics and learn to facilitate groups, providing a safe and supportive environment for participants to share experiences and learn coping strategies
- Explore the importance of cultural competence in behavioral health, and develop the ability to work with diverse populations while respecting their ethnic, cultural, and social backgrounds
- Learn how to provide advocacy services, connecting individuals and families to community resources and support services
- Examine the ethical considerations and legal responsibilities that guide behavioral health practitioners, ensuring ethical conduct and client confidentiality
- Gain practical experience in real-world settings under the supervision of experienced professionals
- Understand the importance of evidence-based practice and learn how to critically evaluate research studies and sources to inform their decision-making
Erin Dannecker, LCSW, joined CTEC in fall of 2023. She earned a Master of Social Welfare and a Bachelor of Art in Anthropology at UC Berkeley. Her teaching experience includes acting as a field instructor for MSW Interns who are completing the clinical practice part of their degree, conducting trainings for clinical staff working in outpatient behavioral health settings, and as an adjunct faculty in the School of Social Work at PSU. Erin has been a therapist for 5 years and licensed for more than 2 years. She has spent 10 years in a variety of Behavioral Health and Human Services settings including working as a health educator, in a hospital, and in community mental health and private group practice as a therapist. She is a clinical supervisor and supports people towards their Social Work Licensure.
Scott Filley, LCSW, came to CTEC in fall, 2023. He has a B.S. in Applied Cultural Anthropology and MSW in Social Work. Scott started his Behavioral Health and Human Services career working as a Youth & Family Counselor in a psychiatric residential treatment center in Portland, Maine, in 1998, and transitioned into working in an outpatient behavioral health setting specializing in skill-building, care coordination, therapy, and program development in Community Outpatient for Youth & Families. He has accumulated over 18 years of experience in several areas within the Behavioral Health and Human Services field, which includes juvenile criminal justice, the geriatric population, medical social work in long-term care and skilled rehabilitation, school social work, clinical social work, and program development administration. The prospect of working alongside 'like-minded' industry professionals and seasoned educators within an integrated academic model is a dream come true for Scott. Having the opportunity to stretch the boundaries within education and teach the next generation of Helping Professionals through applied learning opportunities is a privilege that very few in the industry are afforded. When Scott is not teaching, he is playing! He loves being a father to his two boys and a husband to his wife of 20 years. Scott lives for sports and all things that are simple and provided by nature and the wilderness. Oftentimes, he works on developing his craft as a woodworker and building the perfect Adventure Van for when it's time to hit the road and explore!
Denise Majeski, English, and Social Science
Denise Majeski earned a B.A. in English and Creative Writing at San Jose State University and an M.S.in Education at Western Oregon University. Her teaching experience includes 13 years at the elementary level and 11 at secondary. She has been at CTEC since 2017. Prior to teaching, Denise worked for 10 years in Community Service and Event Planning. Her favorite thing about CTEC is the students and the “opportunities we are able to create with the amazing resources we have been generously provided with”. When Denise is not at CTEC, she loves to read and write, spend time with family, travel, and take river walks with her dog, Ruby.