TERRE HAUTE – Ivy Tech Community College Terre Haute has announced a new partnership with Valley Professionals Community Health Center to establish a full-time behavioral health therapist position to provide free mental health and wellness services to students at the Ivy Tech campus. Establishing a behavioral health therapist on campus is a step toward improving student success by addressing students’ mental health and wellness needs and removing these educational barriers.
Michelle Edwards, MS, MSW, LSW, CADAC II, was hired for the position and began work November 11.
“In order to be successful in college, students need support outside of the classroom to address life challenges that are barriers to education,” said Ivy Tech Terre Haute Chancellor Lea Anne Crooks. “One of the greatest benefits of this partnership is that the behavioral therapist will be full-time and a consistent presence on campus with a permanent office. Michelle will be fully integrated into the Ivy Tech Student Success department, which provides all wrap-around services to support students outside of the classroom.”
In her new role, Edwards will provide free behavioral health therapy services to Ivy Tech students, working together with Valley Professionals Community Health Center’s integrated multidisciplinary healthcare team. She will also work with other community resource providers to help students connect to supports that can improve their behavioral health.
“Mental illness affects approximately one in five adults in the United States, which is why it’s important to develop resources early on,” said Terry J. Warren, CEO of Valley Professionals. “Valley is thrilled to partner with Ivy Tech Community College as we integrate behavioral health services into the campus of Terre Haute.”
The behavioral health therapist position is a welcomed addition to the Ivy Tech Student Success department that provides comprehensive wrap-around student services, including a food pantry, a student success coach, book assistance, disability support services, and more.
“I am excited to work in collaboration with the Student Success team,” said Edwards. “In addition to providing behavioral health therapy, I look forward to helping develop educational programming on wellness topics including body image, dealing with trauma, and healthy relationships.”
Edwards has been practicing in behavioral health roles since 2008 in healthcare facilities throughout the Wabash Valley. She received her Master of Social Work with a concentration in Integrated Health Care in 2018 and a Master of Science in Family and Consumer Sciences in 2008 from Eastern Illinois University.
About Ivy Tech Community College
Ivy Tech Community College serves communities across Indiana, providing world-class education and driving economic transformation. It is the state’s largest public postsecondary institution and the nation’s largest singly accredited statewide community college system. It serves as the state’s engine of workforce development, offering high-value degree programs and training that are aligned with the needs of its communities, along with courses and programs that transfer to other colleges and universities in Indiana. It is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and a member of the North Central Association.