CSS OT program getting funding for mental health providers

St. Scholastica’s Master of Science in Occupational Therapy (MSOT) program is getting some major funding over the next five years, to help students practice as mental health providers.

The College’s program has been awarded a $3.9 million grant over the next five years, through the US Department of Education. In addition to mental health services, the funding will prepare students to meet the region’s mental health needs, characterized by rural isolation, poverty, poor behavioral health outcomes, and mental health provider shortages.

In the announcement, CSS President Barbara McDonald said this is the largest single grant the College has ever received. “We are so proud of the Occupational Therapy faculty and staff, as well as our grants office, who made this funding possible for our students. We look forward to realizing the positive impact the grant outcomes will have on the intersection of occupational therapy and student mental health needs on our Twin Ports community.”

St. Scholastica will partner with and expand services to five high-need school districts throughout northeastern Minnesota and northwestern Wisconsin; including Superior School District, Duluth Public School District, Paul Bunyan Cooperative, Northern Lights Cooperative, and Duluth Public Schools Academy.

This grant will enhance both didactic and experiential learning opportunities for St. Scholastica OT graduate students, and will support the development and implementation of a fellowship program focused on pediatric mental health through the American Occupational Therapy Association.