New initiative introduces behavioral health careers to high school students

Classroom with happy teenagers raising their hands.

AdCare Maine and Co-Occurring Collaborative Serving Maine are proud to launch a new program and initiative aimed at promoting behavioral health careers to Maine high school students. Data indicates that the behavioral health workforce in Maine is aging and there is a need to have more young people entering the field. In light of this, AdCare and CCSME have partnered with Kennebec Valley Community College to develop and pilot a curriculum that would introduce to high school students the many education and career paths within the field.

The main component of the program is a presentation that walks through the many different jobs in the field. This includes jobs such as treatment providers, recovery workers, social workers, mental health rehabilitation technicians, certified prevention specialists, and more. For each job, the presentation covers education and training requirements, overview of the day-to-day responsibilities, salary ranges, and the 10-year outlook for job growth. Another unique feature is a series of short interviews with real Maine behavioral health professionals within each of the job categories. The program is essentially a virtual behavioral health job fair, which educators and school counselors can bring into their school.

A new webpage has launched on the Maine Behavioral Health Workforce Development Collaborative website with a full description of the program along with support materials and resources. You can also view some of the interviews with Maine behavioral health professionals, recorded for the project. Check out the MBHWDC website for more information and to learn how you can bring the program to your school.