Operation Fit, mayoral visits, and Night of Illusion!
Behavioral Health News | Vol. 5, Iss. 1
Operation Fit: A Summer Camp for Children with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities and Obesity

Each summer, medical students, nutrition students, and pediatric residents staff the camp, while numerous psychology students provide one-to-one behavior management for the kids. Medical students engage the children in physical activities to encourage healthy habits and healthy living, while nutrition students prepare meals and snacks and made nutrition lessons fun for the kids. This camp is truly an interdisciplinary collaboration. Activities throughout the weeks of camp include nutrition knowledge relays, scavenger hunts, swimming, sports activities, and many more active games and learning experiences.

Community Engagement

NAMI Walk 2017
Last fall, a  group of Loma Linda University students from the Department of Social Work and Social Ecology joined the movement and formed the "Stars Against Stigma" team at the 12th annual National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI)  Walks Inland Empire. NAMI  is the largest and most successful mental health awareness and fundraising organization in the country.

Translational Research

SBH Hosts Ten Summer Interns to Explore Mental and Behavioral Disparities
The School of Behavioral Health last summer hosted 10 students to learn about behavioral/mental health disparities. They worked with Dr. Susanne Montgomery, Associate Dean for Research, and two SBH senior Social Policy and Social Research PhD students, Semran Mann and Kelly Baek, to learn how to collect and analyze data on mental health disparities in underserved minority populations. Read more →

Student Scoop
Mayors of Murrieta, San Bernardino, and Riverside Speak at Wholeness Hours
Hosted by the Social Work Department

In October, the Phi Alpha Honor Society, Iota Pi Chapter, had the pleasure of presenting a poster board on community engagement at the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) conference via Zoom. The main goal of the Honor Society for the academic year was to "fully embrace the systems approach in social work, by impacting its community on a macro-practice level."

Typically, the chapter hosts various members of social service agencies for the presentation of their ideas and words of wisdom to the students. This year, the Iota Pi Chapter decided to expand its scope, hosting local government officials for the discussion of important issues in the local community and policies impacting its citizens. As social workers, the Honor Society felt it was vital to advocate for the community and open dialogue with community leaders.

The Honor Society met its ambitious goals by hosting three mayors at the Phi Alpha Honor Society "Wholeness Hour." Wholeness Hour devotes one hour to personal, spiritual, and/or professional development through presentations, which help students connect with one another, faculty, God, and professionals in the community.

Mayor Jonathan Ingram of Murrieta, CA - October 10, 2017
Mayor Ingram spoke on the importance of local elected officials' involvement with grassroots and charitable organizations and how policy impacts such organizations. Further, he outlined how everyone can get involved locally to positively impact their community. Mayor Ingram shared his humble upbringing and the multiple adverse childhood events he endured. Instead of becoming a statistic, he was inspired to change the trajectory of his family's life by breaking the cycle of poverty. Due to his childhood experiences, he became a politician to advocate for no child, adult, or senior going without a meal, home, and other basic human necessities.

Mayor R. Carey Davis of San Bernardino, CA - February 8, 2018
Mayor Davis spoke on his Violence Intervention Prevention Program (VIP), San Bernardino law enforcement's interactions with the community that are an attempt to change perceptions of the police force by providing children with stuffed animals, and how he inadvertently became mayor of his city. As an accountant, Mayor Davis "crunched numbers" on the train ride on the way to work and noticed discrepancies. He attended a City Council meeting to exercise his right to challenge the mayor's office and was elected. As a result of following his heart and listening to God, he pursued a new dream and passion for service to the community.

Mayor Rusty Bailey of Riverside, CA - February 22, 2018
Mayor Bailey spoke on homelessness from a policy perspective. Mayor Bailey is changing the narrative of homelessness by calling the homeless "our neighbors without homes" and finding "housing solutions." His very personal inspiration for this initiative is that some of his "neighbors with homes" are his childhood friends and classmates. He suggests that the three components of one's life are "faith, friends, and family." Mayor Bailey is driven by his spirituality to serve the invisible and marginalized population by humanizing them and loving them as the Bible directs us. Hence his "Love Thy Neighbor" initiative. 

The overarching theme communicated by all three mayors is their genuine investment in their communities. As Mayor Ingram noted, and Mayors Davis and Bailey also affirmed, "compassion is apolitical."

As social work students, the Honor Society members were able to use existing relationships and interpersonal skills to promote new relationships with community leaders and to make a positive impact on student learning and recognition of important community issues.
- Tori Dang, MSW student and Phi Alpha Iota Pi Chapter president
Social Work Students Attend 2018 Legislative Lobby Days

On March 11 th and 12 th , Loma Linda University School of Behavioral Health Master of Social Work students participated in the 2018 National Association of Social Workers (NASW) Legislative Lobby Days in Sacramento. Dr. Monte Butler and 15 social work students were able to see the legislative process in action while helping NASW rally support of two Senate bills (SB-10, SB-982) and one Assembly bill (AS-186).

SB-10 would require each county to establish a pretrial services agency to prepare individually tailored recommendations for the court regarding release options and conditions and provide pretrial services and supervision to persons on pretrial release. The goal of the proposed law is to safely reduce the number of people detained pretrial, address racial and economic disparities in the pretrial system, and ensure that people are not held in pretrial detention simply because of their inability to afford money bail.

SB-982 simply declares the intent of the Legislature to enact legislation relating to the CalWORKs grant amount (i.e., make a cost of living adjustment) and supplies data and arguments in favor of a grant amount change.

AB 186, if enacted, would allow specified counties (Alameda, Humboldt, Los Angeles, Mendocino, San Francisco, & San Joaquin) to authorize the operation of supervised injection services programs that meet a number of minimum requirements. Each site would be required to provide hygienic injections spaces supervised by health care professionals, provide sterile consumption supplies, provide referrals to substance use disorder treatment, and make regular reports to their authorizing jurisdiction. Individuals working at and making use of the sites would be exempt from existing criminal sanctions for actions related to safe drug consumption activities at the sites.

Loma Linda University MSW students had the privilege of meeting with legislators in both the Senate and Assembly, where they encouraged legislators to support in SB-10 Bail: Pretrial Release, SB-982 CalWORKs: Grant Amount, and AB-186 Controlled Substances: Safer Drug Consumption Program. This experience gave students the opportunity to advocate on behalf of vulnerable groups and allowed them to further understand their role as agents of change.

- Dr. Monte Butler, Professor of Social Work & Social Ecology, and Selena Bueno, MSW student

Alumni Alcove

Night of Illusion with Danny Ray
The second annual LLUH One Homecoming was held earlier this month, celebrating alumni from Loma Linda University's eight schools as well as other members of our LLUH community. As part of the larger, campus-wide event, the School of Behavioral Health held a fun-filled evening of entertainment from the well-known Christian illusionist Danny Ray, who has performed throughout the United States and the world.

The event kicked off with a light dinner followed by Mr. Ray's performance. Many of the alumni brought their children to enjoy the show, and several were called to participate with Mr. Ray during the performance. One of the children signed a coin which subsequently somehow ended up in the middle of a lime, which was itself inside a sealed soda can that Mr. Ray cut open! The audience was both baffled and mesmerized by this sleight-of-hand and his other enthralling acts of illusion.

Dr. Beverly Buckles, Dean, and Dr. Adam Arechiga, Associate Dean for Academic and Student Affairs, had the opportunity to meet with a number of the alumni attending the event at the DoubleTree Hotel. Dr. Arechiga was the master of ceremonies and also coordinated the opportunity drawing--where five attendees each won an Amazon Echo Dot!

Alumni really enjoyed reconnecting with fellow alumni as well as their "old" professors and are excited to join us again at next year's event!

Click the button below to take our one minute survey.
Let us know what we can do for you!
Join SBH for the BMC's 2nd Annual Stand Up to Stigma 5K!

All alumni, students, faculty, and staff are invited to participate on Sunday, May 20! We'll be awarding prizes for the fastest time walked and run by individuals--and a trophy will go the department with the most participation!

Register for the SBH team here:

Register for the 5K here:

Questions? Please contact Terry Forrester at [email protected].
Awards and Accomplishments
William James Awards
The 2017 recipients of the Psychology department's annual William James  Excellence in Research were Aron Jacobson and Neilson Chan! Read more →
Lisa Lares wins David A. Peterson Student Achievement Award
Lisa Lares is enrolled as a doctoral student expecting to graduate with a PhD in Social Policy and Social Research. Her current research project explores issues of received vs. perceived sources of social support in a sample of ethnically diverse (White, African American, Latino) older adults when it comes to accessing healthcare professionals. Lisa presented this research at the California Council on Gerontology and Geriatrics (CCGG), where she received the David A. Peterson Student Achievement Award recognizing excellence in scholarship, teaching, and service.

Lisa has had a long-standing interest in studying issues impacting the lives of the older adult population. Her dissertation will focus on the psycho-social needs of older adults who have been incarcerated the majority of their adulthood years. Specifically, she wants to assess the results of prison policy reform and its impact on older adult prisoners. Lisa  has published her research in top gerontology journals and, although busy with her studies, she is also a lecturer at CSULB, the North Orange County Community College District School of Continuing Education Older Adult Program, and at Loma Linda University for the gerontology and MSW programs.

She is passionate about gerontology and sees a real need to develop policies that can positively support all aging adults, regardless of background and ethnicity, in healthy and productive aging. We have seen her excel in teaching, service, and most recently in her research--all oriented to her goal of putting a much-needed spotlight on the field of gerontology.
Angelica Chakos Wins WPA Award
Angelica Chakos, Clinical Psychology PhD student, won a WPA Student Research Award Scholarship last spring at the Western Psychological Association annual convention in Sacramento, CA! Her research tested the protective role of forgiveness on the childhood risky family exposures and depressive symptom relationship in late life.  Read more →
Jedd Alejandro Wins APA Division 36 Student Poster Award!
Jedd Alejandro (right), Clinical Psychology PhD student, has won the Society for Psychology of Religion and Spirituality/American Psychological Association - Division 36 Student Poster Award for his poster entitled, "God, Give Me a Miracle! Religious Orientation and Coping as Predictors of Psychosocial Outcomes among Chronic Pain Patients."

Alphonso Smith and Nika Kalynovska Present at Society for Neuroscience
Psychology PhD students Alphonso Smith and Nika Kalynovska (both from Dr. Richard Hartman's lab) presented posters at the Society for Neuroscience conference this past November in Washington, DC!

Dr. Bryan Cafferky Receives AAMFT Award
At the 2016 American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy (AAMFT) Annual Conference (Indianapolis, IN), Dr. Bryan Cafferky received the AAMFT Award for his dissertation titled Substance Use and Intimate Partner Violence: A Meta-Analytic Review. Each year the AAMFT Research and Education Foundation collaborates with the AAMFT Awards Committee to score all submitted dissertations based on methodological rigor and potential impact on the field. Bryan likes to say, "It takes a village to raise a meta-analysis," and was incredibly thankful for family, friends, and faculty mentors who lent him borrowed power to pursue this project. Bryan also proclaims, "Friends don't let friends do meta-analysis," but he secretly enjoys the soothing tediousness of the meta-analytic process--and he is a glutton for punishment has helped publish seven different meta-analyses on physical intimate partner violence.

As a new faculty member at Loma Linda University, Bryan enjoys "paying it forward" by providing graduate students the opportunity to cut their teeth on meta-analytic inquiry. His team of awesome SBH graduate students are currently working on a large meta-analysis examining risk markers associated with various forms of elder maltreatment-and he's always on the lookout for additional team members!
Dr. Jackie Williams-Reade's Project Team Presents at Faculty Development Showcase
The team presented this past February on a collaborative training curriculum they created to help teach pediatric surgery residents how to break bad news to families. They also evaluated this curriculum, and the manuscript will be printed in the journal Families, Systems, and Health.

Left to right: Elsie Lobo (Systems, Families, & Couples PhD student), Joanne Baerg, MD (Professor, Department of Surgery), Dr. Williams-Reade (Associate Professor, Counseling & Family Sciences), and Abel Whittemore (DMFT student).
SBH Team Wins Coastal Division in LLU Winter Slam 2018 Tri-Five Softball Tournament!

The SBH Freudian Slips took on the Schools of Pharmacy (Ovadoz) and Allied Health Professions (Rehab Roundup) during the championship game.

Congratulations to our amazing team!

Upcoming SIMS Trips
  • Madagascar, June 17-July 1
  • Peru, June 17-July 1
  • Angola, June 20-July 3
  • Brazil, July 6-22
  • China, August 1-17
  • Cuba, August 8-22
  • India, August 8-25
  • Honduras, December 16-30
  • Thailand, December 16 - January 1

This year more than 25 School of Behavioral Health students have registered for SIMS trips! We are very proud of our students for participating in this vital work and excited to see their positive impact on our global community.
Book Recommendations

This issue's recommendations come from our three newest faculty members in the Department of Counseling and Family Sciences.

Dr. Bryan Cafferky

The Eight Concepts of Bowen Theory by Roberta M. Gilbert, MD

This book provides a great introduction to the major concepts of Bowen family systems. It succinctly explains the eight interlocking concepts in a way that is accessible for newbies--allowing the reader to focus on the key elements without getting bogged down in the trappings of minutia often prevalent in more advanced texts.

Dr. Zephon Lister

How Emotions are Made: The Secret Life of the Brain by Lisa Barrett, PhD

Lisa Barrett PhD, is a University Distinguished Professor of Psychology at Northeastern University, with appointments at Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital in Psychiatry and Radiology. She received a National Institutes of Health Director's Pioneer Award for her groundbreaking research on emotion in the brain.
This book really challenged how I and many mental health professionals have viewed emotions and the brain.

Dr. Nichola Ribadu

Mindset: The New Psychology of Success by Carol S. Dweck, PhD

This book provides insight into fixed mindset versus growth mindset. It describes the need to receive feedback from a growth mindset in that even if we are doing great, there is always room for improvement. A fixed mindset leads to a more stagnant way of doing things and a growth mindset leads to change, innovation, and development of new ideas.
  LLU School of Behavioral Health | [email protected] | sbh.llu.edu

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