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​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​ ​Welcome to Job Corps! Being a Job​ Corps Center Mental Health Consultant (CMHC) can be a very rewarding experience as you will assist in providing support services to youth on their way to a brighter future and employment. We encourage you to look at the Job Corps Organizational Chart to better understand the organization’s structure and Job Corps Commonly Used Acronyms document that contains all terms related to MHWP with its corresponding acronym. The health and wellness director (HWD) and regional mental health specialist (RMHS) ​will provide you with training, resources, and support to successfully lead the Mental Health and Wellness Program (MHWP). The contact information for all RMHSs is at the bottom of the page.​

Mental Health and Wellness Program

The general emphasis of the Mental Health and Wellness Program (MHWP) is on early identification and diagnosis of mental health problems; basic mental health care; and mental health promotion, prevention, and education designed to help students overcome barriers to employability.
  • To better familiarize with the program, we strongly encourage you to access CMHC Orientation Part 1 and Part 2; and/or participate in quarterly presentations of these orientation webinars.
  • Review the CMHC Task and Frequency Chart which outlines the specific CMHC roles to assist you in prioritizing your time.
Resource Bundles ​

Check out the Resource Bundles for each of the main core components of the MHWP:

Once again, we are excited to welcome you to the Job Corps family!

Lead/​Region​ ​Mental Health Specialist
​Valerie Cherry, PhD
​Region 1 - Boston
Elizabeth (Liz) Jarski​

Maria Acevedo, PhD
​Region 2 - Philadelphia
​Valerie Cherry, PhD
​Region 3 - Atlanta
Elizabeth (Liz) Jarski, LCSW​
​Region 4 - Dallas ​Tamara Warner, PhD
​Region 5 - Chicago
​Helena Mackenzie, PhD
Region 6 - San Francisco

Applicant File Review (AFR) Essentials
Every center is required to establish procedures for the review of applicant files during the admissions process including the review of applicant health information and recommendations for denial when appropriate. Reviewing file folder of applicants with mental health conditions and/or histories during the admissions process is an important part of your job as a CMHC. The HWD will forward files to you of applicants who report mental health and/or behavioral problems on the Job Corps Health Questionnaire (ETA 6-53). There are two teams you will be asked to participate in as part of the assessment of applicants during the admissions process:
  1. The File Review Team (FRT) typically incl​udes you and the Disability Coordinator to review and assess mental heal​​th, behavioral, and educational information of applicants for the program. This will require contact with the applicant to conduct a clinical interview by phone or face to face depending upon the location of the applicant.
  2. The Disability Accommodation process (DAP) is led by the Disability Coordinator or Qualified Health Professional (QH​P). You and the Disability Coordinator will collaborate in gathering information to determine the need for disability accommodation and identifying functional limitations and disability accommodations for applicants with mental health disabilities. You may gather further information by asking the Admissions Staff to obtain various records from schools, hospital​s, physicians, and therapists in order to assist in the formulation of an appropriate accommodation plan. As part of the accommodation process, the center's DAP needs to interview the applicant by phone, video, or schedule a face-to-face interview. Requests for accommodation from applicants with psychiatric disabilities must be evaluated on a case-by-case basis.

    Note: For guidance regarding whether an applicant is a person with a disability, refer to Form 2-03 Procedures for Providing RA-RM-AAS for Participation in the Job Corps Program.
The goal of your review of applicants during the admissions process is to evaluate the information contained in the E-folder and make a clinical recommendation about the current stability of the applicant's mental health and Job Corps' ability to provide care management. There are four potential outcomes of this assessment:
  1. To recommend enrollment of the applicant.​
  2. To determine if the applicant poses a direct threat to others that cannot be alleviated with disability accommodations. If indicat​e​d, you will complete the Direct Threat Assessment Form (Form 2-04).
  3. To determine whether the applicant's health care needs are manageable at Job Corps or whether, even with disability accommodations, the needs are beyond Job Corps' basic health care responsibilities. If indicated, complete the Health Care Needs Assessment Form (Form 2-05).
  4. To determine if applicant’s health care needs are manageable at an alternate Job Corps center with disability accommodations. A different c​enter than originally identified that allows for continuity of care in the community. If indicated, complete the Health Care Needs Assessment Form (Form 2-05).
In your role as a consultant, you can only make recommendations regarding denial of applicant files. The Center Director will review your recommendation and then send the assessment to the Regional Office for final decision. This is only a brief overview of the applicant file review process. Contact your Regional Mental Health Specialist when you are ready to complete your first recommendation for denial.

Assessment & Documentation
​​Assessment & Documentation Resources

CMHCs are responsible for the assessment of students to examine their emotional wellness.

When to conduct assessments:
  • New students answer yes to any of the mental health alert questions on the Job Corps Health History Form
  • Positive emotional/mental health responses of new students on the Social Intake Form (SIF)
  • Students are referred by center staff using a referral and feedback form
  • Students with co-occurring diagnoses are referred by the TEAP specialist
  • Students self-refer to mental health services.
Intake Interview:
  1. Review the referral, and health records, if helpful, speak directly with the referral source.
  2. Coordinate an intake appointment with the student as soon as possible or, if urgent, that same day.
  3. After the intake interview several options are possible:
    • Short term therapy or off-center on-going therapy, in which cases, a full intake assessment should be completed and placed in the student health record (SHR).
    • If no treatment plan is needed, only a supportive plan from counseling staff.
      • Document brief summary of the initial intake interview and recommendations in a progress note in the SHR.
Note: As a mandated reporter you are required by law to make a report if you suspect or have reason to believe a child or elder has been abused or neglected. However, state laws and regulations vary regarding more specific issues such as how abuse and neglect are defined and the procedures for making a report. Therefore, it is important to be knowledgeable about the reporting requirements in your jurisdiction. Document all interventions in the SHRs.​​

Treatment & Documentation
Treatment & Documentation Resources

After completing a student’s assessment CMHCs need to determine and document in the SHR a disposition plan that could include:
  • On center short-term counseling with mental health checks.​
    • The focus is on retention and addressing behaviors that represent employability barriers. Most CMHCs use cognitive behavioral approache​s that are solution focused.
  • Referral to counseling department for personal counseling and case management.
    • The counselor is considered the case manager for students on cent​er and oversee any case management plan developed for st​udent services. Examples: TEAP counseling, psycho-educational skill-building groups, HEALs weight management program. Remember, there should be regular case conferences/meetings between the CMHC and the counselors to review case management plans; mostly coordinated weekly or every other week.
  • Referrals, as needed, to other wellness staff, including the TEAP Specialist
    • Disability Accommodation Process (DAP) and community mental health services for long-term treatment and/or specialized services. Remember to have student sign a release form to share information.
Additional treatment tasks include:
  • Referral and Feedback System:
  • Psychotropic Medication:
    • Monitor students already on medication, specifically those who have medication adherence concerns, or students referred to the center physician or consulting psychiatrist for a medication evaluation
  • Crisis Intervention as needed
  • HIV Positive Students:
    • The CMHC must be in attendance to assist in informing and counseling students with a positive HIV result.
  • Medical Separation with Reinstatement Rights (MSWRs):
    • Determine if a MSWR is appropriate for students with mental health conditions or dual-diagnosis (in collaboration with TEAP specialist).

MH Promotion & Education
Mental Health and Wellness Program (MHWP) Promotion and Education Activities – ePRH required:
  1. Minimum of a one-hour presentation on mental-health promotion for all new students during the Career Preparat​ion Period (CPP) with an emphasis on employability. The presentation must:
    1. Explain the Mental-Health and Wellness Program, what services are available, and how to make a self-referral.
    2. Provide basic skills to students for them to identify and respond to a mental health crisis.
  2. At least one annual center-wide mental-health promotion and education activity.

    To plan these center-wide educational activities consider searching for each year’s National Mental Health Observances Calendar which includes mental health related awareness month/day. The following are activity ideas:
    1. Joint participation in Health & Wellness Fair
    2. Various contests (e.g. poster, rap, spoken word)
    3. Offer presentations at assembly/business meeting
    4. Place a table at cafeteria entrance with educational brochures/information sheets
  3. Clinical consultation with Center Director and other management staff regarding mental health-related promotion and education efforts for students and staff.
  4. Coordination with other departments/programs on center to develop integrated promotion and education services.

Utilize a binder, an electronic file or spreadsheet on your computer with the heading "CPP presentation”, and “Mental Health Promotion and Education" to include all presentations and/or trainings for students and staff.

Where to find educational resources

The Mental Health Promotion and Education webpage provides Job Corps brochures and handouts and web resources where you can order FREE brochures and fact sheets.

Crisis Intervention

Crisis Interve​ntion Quicklinks
Crises and emergencies may be natural disasters, students in a mental health crisis, or any other critical incident. These events can lead to intense emotional responses from students and staff and impact their sense of well-being. Job Corps centers are encouraged to prepare for crises before they happen. As CMHC you may be identified to assist center administration in developing a plan.

This section is designed to help centers prepare for a critical incident and respond to students’ physical and mental health needs should an incident occur. Centers need to adopt a step-by-step approach during critical situations and planning is essential.

The main document is the critical incident crisis intervention plan which helps center staff adopt a focused approach during crisis situations. This document gives a detailed overview of the roles and responsibilities of staff during and after a crisis as well as preparing for a student's return after a crisis. Special attention is given on how to respond after a suicide attempt or suicide.​


Collaboration Resources
​Staff training – New Hire Orientation
  1. CMHCs and counseling staff are required to collaborate in developing and/or leading psycho-educational skill-building groups to promote student’s well​ness.

    The CMHCs are encouraged to do the following:
    • Determine what groups are occurring on center and make recommendations for new groups.
    • Help train staff to conduct and manage psycho-educational groups.
    • Lead or co-lead groups as appropriate. (It is a requirement for counselors to regularly lead or co-lead psycho-educational groups. CMHCs collaborate but are not responsible for providing continuous psycho-educational groups).
    • Allow graduate students to provide groups under the CMHC’s supervision.

    Documentation psycho-educational skill-building groups:
    • Utilize a binder, an electronic file or spreadsheet on their computer with the heading "Psycho-educational skill-building groups" to include presentations dates and topics offered to students.
  2. The MHWP and TEAP should collaborate to integrate and document their services through:
    • The file review of applicants with co-occurring conditions.
    • The assessment, and if necessary, short-term counseling of students with co-occurring conditions of mental health and substance use.
    • The assessment of students with a recommendation of a Medical Separation with Reinstatement Rights (MSWR) or Medical Separation due to substance use disorders.
  3. CMHCs should collaborate with Center Physician (CP) and Health and Wellness staff to manage students on psychotropic medication.
    • Evaluate students already on medication and identify any others who may need to be referred to the CP or consulting psychiatrist for a medication evaluation.
    • Document these collaborations and intervention to improve adherence in the SHRs.
  4. Centers are required to develop a sexual assault response team (SART) that involves center staff and outside resources. CMHCs, should:
    • Assist the SART Coordinator in developing staff training on sexual assault awareness and prevention, if requested.
    • Provide short-term therapy. Long-term therapy should be referred to the local rape crisis center where the student can receive immediate specialized services.
    • Provide follow-up support when the student returns after receiving outside services.
    • Provide HIV counseling and crisis assistance, if needed.
  5. Center’s Human Resources (HR) and contractor are responsible for overseeing that all center staff complies with the required minimum five hours of annual training in adolescent growth and development. CMHCs are encouraged to:
    • Be a training resources and provide some of the staff training
    • Identify community resources to conduct training

      Topics could include: effective communications, sexuality, suicide prevention, appropriate staff/student boundaries, sexual assault prevention and response, crisis intervention techniques, and safety issues.
  6. Be aware that annually, all center staff members are required to complete the SafetyNet toolkit training that provides information and resources on bullying, violence, and suicide prevention.

Medical Separations Overview

​Medical separations are considered when students are no longer able to participate in Job Corps due to medical, dental, substance abuse, or mental health reasons.

Students are medically separated when:
  • They feel the need to go home for further treatment at their request
  • They are determined to have a pre-existing or acquired health condition which significantly interferes or precludes further training in Job Co​rps
  • Further treatment and evaluation are recommended by the on-center provider or an outside provider
  • The health problem is too complicated to manage on center
  • The necessary treatment will be unusually costly
Type of Medical Separations​ ​
Medical Separation with Reinstatement Rights (MSWR) Regular or Straight Medical Separation (MS)
  • ​Have to be initiated by health services staff.
  • Recommended when the on-cen​ter provider estimates that the student health condition can be resolved and reinstated within 180 days.
  • Documentation of health condition and referral considerations are required.
  • Students must be contacted monthly by the health and wellness director (HWD), center mental health consultant (CMHC) or health and wellness center (HWC) designee to assess progress and plan their return to Job Corps.
  • The student can return to the program right where they left off.
  • There is no limit on how many are taken.
  • ​Have to be initiated by health services staff.
  • Recommended when the on-center provider estimates that the student’s condition cannot be stabilized in 180 days.
  • Documentation of health condition and referral considerations are required.
  • Is not frequently used and is discouraged by the National office.
  • The student loses everything they have achieved.
  • The student cannot reapply for a year.

Click here for the Detailed MSWR Instructions for CMHCs and the ​Sample Medical Separation with Reinstatement (MSWR)​​ Form (​Formulario de Separación Médi​ca Con Reinstalación (Spanish)​).


Health Care Guidelines (HCGs)

Benefits of HCGs:
  • Provide evidence-based scientific rationale to support decisions regarding health staff treatment of students
  • Decrease the possibility of medico-legal concerns for health staff & providers
  • Provide non-health staff (residential, education, etc.) with direction for action, especially when the health staff is not available or not on center
  • Avoid unnecessary transport to the local emergency room
Two Types of HCGs:
Requirements Related to HCGs:
  • All HCGs must be approved and signed annually by the appropriate provider.
Training Related to HCGs (See PRH Exhibit 5-4 Required Staff Training):
  • New health staff must receive training in the use of TGs within 90 days of employment, followed by a personal authorization.
  • New non-health staff must receive training in the use of SMGs within 90 days of employment and annually, followed by a personal authorization.

Disability Program Support

​Disabilit​y Program​ Resources​​
​Job Corps is required to ensure its program and facilities are accessible, promote modifications and reasonable accommodations to individuals with​​ disabilities to prevent discrimination on the basis of disability. To guarantee these requirements are met the Disability Program is to:
  1. Provide individualized and coordinated services to all students with disabilities.
  2. Provide a Disability Program with a center-wide focus.
  3. Ensure equal opportunity for all students, including those with disabilities.
  4. Ensure all policy and legal requirements related to serving students with disabilities are met.
  5. Ensure access for students with disabilities that focuses on employability and independent living.
Each center should have a Disability Coordinator(s) who ensures the center is providing services to students with disabilities as required by the PRH and Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA). The Health and Wellness Director (or a health staff designee) and Academic Manager (or an academic staff designee) will function as D​​isability Coordinators (DC) to oversee the program. Additional DCs may be appointed. Centers may choose to hire a full or part time DC to oversee the program rather than or in addition to appointing an academic and health DC.

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