Hawkeye Community College to host Cedar Valley Mental Health Summit September 23

posted on Wednesday, August 31, 2022 in  College News

WATERLOO–Hawkeye Community College will host the annual Cedar Valley Mental Health Summit on Friday, September 23, 7:30am-5:00pm in Tama Hall on Hawkeye’s Main Campus, 1501 E. Orange Rd, Waterloo, Iowa. 

Keynote speaker is journalist and author Stephanie Foo. In her book, What My Bones Know: A Memoir of Healing from Complex PTSD, Foo talks about the difference practitioners can make when they encourage their clients to see a nuanced perspective on their mental health conditions. What happens when you cut down on pathologizing, become your clients' equal, and focus instead on the potential to harness trauma into a superpower?

Foo previously worked as a radio producer for This American Life and Snap Judgment, and freelanced for podcasts like The Cut, Nancy, Reply All and 99% Invisible. Additionally, she created a video series for This American Life that won an Emmy and made an app for sharing podcast audio. Today, she mostly edits audio pieces and writes, with her work being featured in The New York Times and Vox.

The conference will feature a number of breakout sessions, including discussions of trauma-informed empathy, trauma-informed resiliency-focused practices, substance use disorder and COVID 19, and professional wellbeing. 

A pre-conference training in QPR (Question, Persuade, and Refer) will be held on Thursday, September 22, from 6:00-8:00pm in Tama Hall. QPR focuses on three steps anyone can learn to help prevent suicide and is the most widely taught gatekeeper training in the world. Ryan Nesbit, training instructor, is the co-director of Alive and Running Iowa and has done nearly 350 suicide prevention trainings. Nesbit will share his own stories of suicide, loss, and suicidal intention. Training will be interactive, with a combination of presentation, question and answer, and discussion points.

The Cedar Valley Mental Health Conference is designed for nurses, EMS professionals, substance abuse counselors, social workers, educators, and other healthcare providers. Attendees can earn continuing education units. 

Registration is $60 per person and includes continental breakfast, lunch, and snacks. For more information or to register, call 319-296-4290 or visit www.hawkeyecollege.edu/mental-health-summit.


  1. Business and Community Education
  2. Cedar Valley Mental Health Summit
  3. Continuing Education
  4. Professional Development
  5. Stephanie Foo
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