Supporting the Well-Being of Our School Community
Our online workshop series is aimed at improving the mental and emotional wellness of our school community. We recognize that COVID-19 and anti-Black racist incidents have amplified the need for wellness supports. Our workshops also further our mission as a School of Education that views education as intertwined with health, wellness, and human development.
- Five online workshops open to students, faculty, and staff in the Pitt School of Education
- Attend all sessions or only those that interest you
- Workshops will address a range of important topics, including pandemic-induced anxiety, trauma and post-traumatic stress, compassion fatigue, strategies to manage intense emotions, and depression among Black Americans
Workshop Schedule & Registration
* Due to COVID-19, all workshops will be online until further notice. Dates in the fall may have an in-person component if conditions allow for it.*
- March 1, 2021 - Managing Your Pandemic Anxiety
Managing Your Pandemic Anxiety
Monday, March 1, 2021 | 10 a.m. - Noon EST
Uncertainty breeds anxiety, and we are currently living in some uncertain times. The compounded loss and trauma from the global health pandemic has stirred up a perfect storm for increasing racial divide, violence, abuse, economic stress, and the list goes on. It is hard not to be anxious right now given all the change, chaos, and uncertainties the global health pandemic has brought into our daily lives. Worries about contracting the virus, child-care, virtual schooling, loss of income, sustaining business, and social isolation can evoke unsettling thoughts and emotions. Having concerns about these areas of our lives is valid. Worrying and creating scenarios that have not taken place is a breeding ground for anxiety. While anxiety can serve to protect us when our nervous system senses danger, it is imperative that we find healthy coping strategies to navigate through this emotion.
The Managing Your Pandemic Anxiety will equip participants with the knowledge and healthy coping skills needed to prioritize their mental and emotional well-being during this pandemic.
By the end of the webinar, participants will learn to:
• Identify signs and symptoms of anxiety
• Recognize anxiety as protective and destructive
• Identify Anxiety Igniting Thoughts
• Implement Healthy/Adaptive Coping strategies to Manage Anxiety
- April 12, 2021 - The Invisible Injury: Understanding the Impact of Complex Trauma and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder
"The Invisible Injury: Understanding the Impact of Complex Trauma and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)"
Monday, April 12, 2021 | 10 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. ET
Trauma is the response to a deeply distressing or disturbing event that overwhelms an individual’s ability to cope. It causes feelings of helplessness, hopelessness, diminishes a person’s sense of self and their ability to feel the full range of experiences and emotions. It can be caused by a variety of events, including but not limited to; the untimely death of a loved one, neighborhood violence, domestic violence, chronic pain, natural disasters, physical, emotional, and sexual abuse, and military combat. PTSD is an anxiety disorder that develops in some people after witnessing or experiencing a terrifying event. Although recent research has revealed that nearly 90 percent of people in the United States have experienced one or more traumatic events, there are no objective criteria to evaluate which events will cause post trauma symptoms. “The Invisible Injury: Understanding the Impact of Complex Trauma and PTSD” is an intense trauma informed care workshop which incorporates instruction, individual reflection, small group discussion pairs (virtual break-out sessions), and large group discussion to offer participants the training and support needed in their day-to-day work with children and adults.
By the end of the workshop, participants will be able to:
• Develop a greater understanding of the impact of trauma for the individual survivor, the family, and the community.
• Develop the skills and tools that will inform work with children, adolescents and adults who have traumatic histories.
• Develop the communication skills that engage families and promote safe learning environments.
• Implement the philosophy of Trauma-Informed care in their work
- September 30, 2021 - When Helping Hurts: Understanding the Impact of Secondary Traumatic Stress and Compassion Fatigue
When Helping Hurts: Understanding the Impact of Secondary Traumatic Stress and Compassion Fatigue
Thursday, September 30, 2021 | 10 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.
Register Here >>Secondary Traumatic Stress (STS), also referred to as Compassion Fatigue is defined as the indirect exposure to difficult, disturbing, and/or traumatic images and stories of the suffering of others. Now, the fight against two global pandemics plaguing this country: health and systemic racism is amplifying all the factors that lead to compassion fatigue. These pandemics demand an increased need for frontline and direct response workers to fulfill the medical, mental, educational, and social health needs of the families and communities impacted. When Helping Hurts: Understanding the Impact of Secondary Traumatic Stress training is an overview designed to bring awareness to the systematic impact of STS, offer a safe space for helping professionals to learn strategies for managing STS and also to assist our front line workers in providing from a full well of compassion rejuvenation.By the end of the workshop, Participants will be able to:• Identify the signs and contributing factors to compassion satisfaction and secondary traumatic stress/compassion fatigue, vicarious trauma and burn-out.• Identify and implement the parallel process of healthy boundary setting and self-advocacy from staff to student, practitioner to client or caregiver to loved one.• Develop a self-care plan that allows participants to manage themselves in emotionally charged situations and work with their students in a more mindful way.
- October 4, 2021 - I Can’t Keep Calm: Strategies for Regulating Intense Emotions
I Can’t Keep Calm: Strategies for Regulating Intense Emotions
Monday, October 4, 2021 | 10 a.m. - Noon ET
Register Here >>Emotion is defined as a natural instinctive state of mind deriving from one’s circumstances, mood, or relationships with others. Emotions are created in the brain and can signal threats and rewards. Experiencing both positive and negative intense emotions such as pain, distress, despair, fear, excitement, love, happiness, or sadness is normal. Becoming overwhelmed with how to manage these intense emotions can cause one to feel emotionally dysregulated. External messages received from family and society can have an impact on emotional development, including how emotions are processed. I Can’t Keep Calm: Strategies for Regulating Intense Emotions is a 2-hour training designed to bring awareness to the purpose emotions serve in our lives as well as learning to use, enjoy and coexist with them in healthy ways.
• Participants will be able to describe emotion regulation and emotion dysregulation• Participants will be able to identify the impact of dysregulated emotions on relationships with themselves and others.• Participants will be able to identify strategies to manage emotional distress.
By the end of the workshop, Participants will be able to:
• Understand the impact of messages received from family of origin on emotional development• Understand the emotions experienced• Decrease negative vulnerability and increase acceptance of emotions• Identify and implement trauma informed approaches for regulating intense emotions.
- November 8, 2021 - Beyond the Blues: Understanding Depression in African Americans
Beyond the Blues: Understanding Depression in African Americans
Monday, November 8, 2021 | 10 a.m. - Noon ET
Register Here >>Depression is a mood disorder that causes a persistent feeling of sadness or loss of interest-also called major depressive disorder or clinical or major depression. It affects how you think, feel, act, and relate to others and can lead to a variety of emotional and behavioral problems. The Beyond the Blues: Depression in African Americans is a 2-hour training designed to examine and dispel the myths and stigmas that have historically become barriers to the African American community seeking mental health treatment, bring awareness to the signs, symptoms, risk and protective factors of depression, identify the connection between racial based traumatic experiences and depression in African Americans, and explore the cultural adaptations of evidenced based mental health treatments.Learning Objectives:• Participants will be able to identify the signs and symptoms of Depression• Participants will be able to identify the difference between Depression and feeling blue according to the Diagnostic Statistics Manual-DSM V• Participants will be able to identify the myths and social determinants that have created barriers to the African American Community seeking mental health treatment.By the end of the workshop, Participants will be able to:• Understand the connection between racial based traumatic experiences and depression in African Americans.• Identify risk and protective factors for Depression in African Americans• Identify the various types of depression according to the DSM V• Screen for signs of depression as well as protective factors• Identify and utilize cultural modifications to evidenced based mental health treatments in their work with African Americans
Sharise Nance is a licensed clinical social worker, adjunct professor, speaker, and award-winning entrepreneur and author. In addition to running her private practice, HandinHand Counseling Services, Sharise also dedicates her efforts to running Vitamin C Healing, LLC. Vitamin C was created to promote life balance, satisfaction, and fulfillment for professionals, caregivers, entrepreneurs, and leaders who may be struggling with compassion fatigue and burnout. Sharise also serves as an adjunct professor to master's students at the University of Pittsburgh School of Social Work.
Among her numerous press accolades, Sharise has been featured in the 2020 Pittsburgh Magazine’s segment on women and business. She has also appeared on the front cover of the 2019 Women's Independent Press Yellow Pages of Pittsburgh and was featured in the New Pittsburgh Courier, the New Social Work Magazine, and Twinkl magazine. She was highlighted by the National Association for Mental Illness in a feature on Black History Month as a voice of African Americans in the Pennsylvania community. Sharise is the recipient of the New Pittsburgh Courier Class of 2019 Fab 40 under 40 award, the University of Pittsburgh School of Social Work’s 2019 Outstanding Alumni Award in Direct Practice, the 2019 Inspiring Lives Magazine Women In Business Award, the 2018 Onyx Women in Leadership award, the 2018 Business Leader recognition by the House of PA representatives, and the 2018 Professional Women’s Network Ladies Who Lead award.
Workshop Series Sponsors
The workshop series is sponsored by the school's PittEd Justice Collective and Office of the Associate Dean for Equity and Justice.
For questions about the workshop series, please contact Dr. Elon Dancy, Associate Dean for Equity and Justice, at firstname.lastname@example.org.