Native Pathway to the Possible - Enhancing Native Presence in Behavioral Health

2:30 PM
3:45 PM


Native students’ academic achievement and educational attainment lags far behind that of their peers. Schools were not built to respect Native American culture or beliefs. In fact, they were created to remove the Indian out of the man adding to intergenerational and historical trauma. Today, American Indians and Alaska Natives (AI/AN) continue to have the highest high school dropout rate of any other racial or ethnic group. 19% of 18–24-year-old Native American students are enrolled in college compared to 41% of the overall U.S. population. This webinar discusses past and present factors about college attainment for AI/AN populations in the United States. We will also discuss the need for more Native professionals in behavioral health and public health occupations and the need for culturally informed behavioral health programs. The AI/AN Mental Health Transfer Technology Center Leadership Academy has an outstanding program to increase Native presence in the behavioral health field. The Leadership Academy is a program that aims to enhance Native presence in behavioral health. This year-long program offers a unique opportunity for mental health, behavioral health, and substance use professionals to explore their exceptional skills and leadership potential through trainings, an individual project, and mentor support.

Learning Objectives

1. Understand the barriers to Higher Education Attainment

2. Gain knowledge as to why more Native Professionals need to enter the behavioral health field

3. Realize the need for a culturally adapted and culturally informed behavioral health program and services

4. Learn about The Leadership Academy: A program aiming to enhance Native presence in behavioral health

31st Annual National Leadership Forum & SAMHSA's 17th Prevention Day


Teresa Brewington
Program Manager
National American Indian & Alaska Native Mental Health TTC – K- 12 School Supplement
Monica Dreyer Rossi
Program Manager
University of Iowa College of Public Health Leadership Academy and Tribal College and University Initiative