This is an unprecedented time in our country, and a challenging time to navigate the rigors of graduate education. The fear, anxiety and stress that our students feel is real, and it is vital that our School places great focus on helping students stay grounded, focused and well.
EDWARDSVILLE, Ill. (PRWEB) October 09, 2020
Anxiety disorders, major depressive episodes and posttraumatic stress disorder are among the most prevalent mental illnesses experienced by tens of millions of adults and youth in the United States annually, according to the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI). In an effort to educate the public, fight stigma and provide support, NAMI is engaging in Mental Illness Awareness Week from Oct. 4-10.
Southern Illinois University Edwardsville’s School of Pharmacy (SOP) is among the few schools of pharmacy nationwide to have developed a leadership position with mental health as top priority. SOP Dean Mark Luer, PharmD, has named professor Kelly Gable, PharmD, BCPP, as director of Well-Being and Resilience.
Gable assumed her new role on Sept. 1, and will serve as a key leader for strategy, policy and practice related to matters of mental health and wellness, while fostering a healthy climate for faculty, staff and students.
“I genuinely care about the well-being of my colleagues and our students,” said Gable, a psychiatric pharmacist and educator whose career is grounded in the behavioral health field. “Our direct and purposeful focus on the promotion of their well-being is what will continue to ensure that our SOP is successful and nationally renowned.
“This is an unprecedented time in our country, and a challenging time to navigate the rigors of graduate education. The fear, anxiety and stress that our students feel is real, and it is vital that our School places great focus on helping students stay grounded, focused and well. I am eager to continue to make this a priority in my role as director of Well-Being and Resilience.”
In March 2019, the SOP launched a Mental Health and Wellness Taskforce, which Gable led. Additionally, Gable has developed and coordinated a psychiatry/neurology integrated therapeutics course, and coordinated a mental health elective focused not only on patient care, but also self-awareness and self-care practices. For three years, she collaborated with colleagues and campus leaders to develop suicide prevention and awareness programming, a project funded by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).
“Under Dr. Gable’s leadership, we’ve seen the growth of new programming and the development of a new standing committee on Well-Being and Resilience,” Luer said. “Dr. Gable’s success in forming a cohesive and active group of faculty, staff and students to address the growing challenges facing both higher education and society has been noteworthy. Her interests and expertise in mental health, self-awareness and self-care practices match the needs of our academic community. She has a documented history of collaboration that garners strength from University programs and community-based organizations in the development of successful partnerships that address areas of need. Dr. Gable is highly qualified to further our collective efforts.”
As director of Well-Being and Resilience, Gable’s responsibilities will include, but are not limited to:
- Supporting and promoting a culture of well-being and resilience with the SOP
- Reviewing and prioritizing recommendations from the Well-Being and Resilience Committee
- Collaborating with the Office of Professional and Student Affairs to coordinate student-oriented well-being initiatives
- Providing regular progress reports on well-being and resilience initiatives to the dean and faculty
- Overseeing the components of the School’s Strategic Plan focused on well-being and resilience
- Assessing the impact of well-being activities and initiatives, and monitoring trends over time
- Implementing an ongoing communications plan for well-being and resilience initiatives
The establishment of this new position was among the recommendations from the Mental Health and Wellness Taskforce. The standing committee on Well-Being and Resilience is also a product of the Task Force. The committee maintains student representatives from each of the four cohorts, as well as a diversity of SOP faculty and staff.
The SIUE SOP’s commitment to the mental wellness and overall well-being of its pharmacy community aligns with the American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy (AACP) adoption of policies for schools of pharmacy to facilitate and develop a culture of well-being and resilience, which are incorporated into accreditation standards.
Today’s pharmacists improve patients’ lives through the medication and education they provide. Dedicated to developing a community of caring pharmacists, the SIUE School of Pharmacy curriculum is a model that offers students a unique combination of classroom education, research, community service and patient care. The School of Pharmacy’s areas of excellence include a drug design and discovery core; pediatric practice; chronic pain research and practice; and diabetes research and practice. As the only downstate Illinois pharmacy doctorate program, the SIUE School of Pharmacy is providing highly trained pharmacists prepared for the rapidly changing healthcare environment.