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African American male homelessness, incarceration and mental health

Darnell Autry Durrah Jr.

Homelessness has been a major social issue in America for years. Once thought of as only affecting older White alcoholics has dramatically changed over the past twenty years. In many geographically locations African Americans are vastly overrepresented. Africa American males have been reported to account for 47 to 77% of the homeless. More that 50% of individuals incarcerated in state correctional facilities are African American males. African Americans historical perception of mental health treatment has created an additional barrier for those that need help, but choose not seek services. This presentation seeks to provide the audience with a brief historical view on homelessness to present issues while linking incarceration and mental health treatment among African American males.

CECP GSO Research Exchange Conference 2011

Kathryn Johnson, Marquette University

The following literature review discusses potential non-medical benefits that may result from child and adolescent interaction with animals, and the practitioner or educator preferences regarding animal species used in Applied Animal Therapy. Discussed below are a variety of research study findings regarding the potential relationships between human-animal interactions and the various social, cognitive, emotional, behavioral, and personality developmental aspects in children and adolescents. These studies looked at human-animal interactions in the school setting, in therapy settings using AAT, and in the family home settings regarding companion animals/pets. The animals involved in these studies include horses, dogs, cats, rabbits, fish, and other aquarium-dwelling species. Interaction with and preference for horses yielded the most significant benefits with child/adolescent development, followed closely by interaction with and preference for dogs. These studies address multiple factors including the owner attachment levels to the animals, child/adolescent preferences for specific species or no animals at all, and past/present history of household pet ownership. The research also addresses many aspects to child and adolescent development including, memory, focus/distractibility, self-confidence, self-esteem, social skills, attachment issues, depression, aggressiveness, and most notably empathy. The findings relay the positive impact that human-animal interactions can and do have on many aspects of child and adolescent development in many different circumstances. These studies showed that there is a positive relationship between child-animal interactions and child development, which is supported by researches, parents, and teachers.

Development of Bicultural Competence

Jessica L. Scheunemann, Marquette University

This inquiry looks at factors facilitating the development of bicultural competnece in internationally-adopted youth in America. Bicultural competence is the extnesion of ethnic identity defined as having knowledge of language, lifestyle characteristics, and patterns if interpersonal behavior of two cultural groups. Being competent in two cultures is an extremely difficult task for youth, largely impacted by socialization and parent mediation. Major factors discussed include: parent characteristics/styles/access to resources, youth/parental exploration of ethnicity, bicultural stress, and youth perceptions. Bicultural competnece leads to many benefits and is an important topic for counselors to understand and continually educate themselves on!

Does Motor Development Influence Language Development?

Melissa Behrens, Marquette University
Jaimie Hauch, Marquette University

The emergence of language in infants is one of biggest achievements in their first two years of life. At the present, there is a great deal of information available regarding the precursors that influence the onset of language in both typically and atypically developing children. It is commonly acknowledged that achievements in cognitive development during these stages of life widely influence the emerging language system. However, one of the other precursors that require additional attention is motor development. The implications that this system has on future language development is something that needs further consideration in the study of both typically and atypically developing populations with deficits in these areas.

Effects of Physical Activity on Mental Health in Adolescence and Emerging Adulthood

Celina M. Dabrowski, Marquette University
Carly Miller, Marquette University

Poster Presentation:

Physical activity is known to have a variety of positive effects on the overall functioning of human beings. As developing professional counselors, understanding the effects of physical activity on mental health is of special concern. In order to understand the specific effects of physical activity on adolescents and emerging adults, an analysis of recent literature was conducted. It was found that physical activity has a profound impact on various aspects of development in these stages.

Helpful and Harmful Religious Beliefs in Therapy

Suzie Ceplina, Marquette University

Presentation of information for counselors working with religious or spiritual clients. Learning objectives include: strengths and limitations, assessment of spiritual or religious beliefs, identification of harmful religious or spiritual belifs, and techniques in addressing harmful religious/spiritual beliefs in counseling.

Hope and Adjustment Among Typically Developing Siblings of Children with Autism

Rory Anne Raasch,

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The following is a proposal for a research study investigating the level hope in typically developing youth siblings of children with autism. Having a sibling with ASD has a unique impact on a child’s development and could potentially be seen as a risk factor. Literature on the nature of adjustment in this population is reviewed. Previous research has shown that hope is a construct that can be identified in young children and has lead to beneficial outcomes in children who are at risk. The current study intends assess the level of hope in typically developing siblings of children with ASD who are currently participating in an ABA program. Children without a sibling with ASD will be compared. Implications and future research are discussed.

POSTER. Reactive Attachment Disorder: Developing a Developmental Perspective

Johnathan M. Sumpter

Reactive Attachment Disorder is a relatively young disorder. Researchers are just beginning to hash out the implications of this disorder on current children and future generations. However, there is much needed from criteria setting and researching leadership to mediate the process of gaining ground in assessing and treating this disorder. This meta-analysis will provide an overview that will point out the diagnostic ambiguities, theoretical conflicts, and disjointed research of the previous decade’s work on RAD.

Research Exchange

Jesse R. Wynn, Marquette University

Social interaction theory: Social interaction theory provides an explanation of aggressive acts motivated by higher level goals. Hostile aggression may have some rational goal behind it. Social interaction theory provides understanding that aggression is often the result of threats to high self esteem (i.e. Smart condition eliminating quicker than dumb condition), (Anderson and Bushman, 2002).

Neuroticism: According to Big Five Inventory; individuals who are high in Neuroticism show the following traits: Anxiety, angry hostility, depression, self-consciousness, impulsiveness and lack of self confidence (John & Srivastava, 1999).

Conscientiousness: Individuals who are high in conscientiousness exhibit the following traits: Competence, order, dutifulness, achievement, self-discipline and deliberation (John & Srivastava, 1999). Research has shown that individuals high on the trait of conscientiousness take better care of themselves and live longer.

Hypothesis: We hypothesized that individuals who scored high on Neuroticism from the BFI scale would eliminate their opposition (in a competitive game) at a faster rate than those with lower scores on the neuroticism scale.

Student Mental Health Curriculum for Teachers: A Proposal

Weneaka D. Jones

It is estimated that only one fifth of children who need mental health services receive them, primarily through school-based services (Burns et al., 1995). The current research proposal seeks to gain a better understanding of what teachers need to know about student mental health in order to affectively aid efforts to connect underserved children to mental health services. The overall goal of the proposed study is to develop a student mental health curriculum for teachers that can be used to educate current teachers and better prepare teachers-in-training. Proposed methods include running both mental health professional and education professional focus groups that will include a survey and discussion regarding the role of teachers, schools and the community in helping children with mental health needs access mental health services. Future stages of the proposed study will look to combine information gathered from focus groups and the literature to design a competency-based student mental health curriculum that can be used to educate current teachers and better prepare teachers-in-training to aid current efforts to connect underserved children to mental health services.

The Effect of Military Deployment on the Parents of Those Deployed

Ashley Hinkamper, Marquette University
Cody Carson, Marquette University
Erica N. Johnson, Marquette University

This study proposes to examine the psychological effects of military deployment on the parents of those deployed. Questionnaires will be administered to parents of active-duty and recently discharged marines via the internet. Whether deployment is to an area where there is substantial risk of injury or death or to an area without such risk will be assessed. Parents’ personal distress, efforts to cope with stress, and attitudes towards mental illness and its treatment will be evaluated. We hypothesize that parents of those deployed in danger zones will report greater distress, and that distress will be influenced by media exposure and frequency of contact with the service person. We further expect that parents will express desire to understand mental health problems and their treatment better. Findings could help facilitate active and retired service members’ capacity to recognize and respond to mental health problems.

Necessary Audiovisual Aids: Easel to set poster on

The Effects of Smoking and Memory in Posttraumatic Stress Disorder: A Proposal

Kathryn Kalvoda, Kathryn Erin Kalvoda
Andrew D. Ronquillo, Andrew D Ronquillo

The Effects of Smoking and Memory in Posttraumatic Stress Disorder: A Proposal

By Kathryn E. Kalvoda and Andrew D. Ronquillo

Many individuals suffer with high stress and life-changing memories. These memories are hard to erase and many are forced to deal with them for the rest of their lives. These experiences can cause an increase in vulnerability to a diagnosis of posttraumatic stress disorder, a disorder in which recurrent thoughts of traumatic events detrimentally influence an individual’s quality of life. One particular source of stress reduction is to engage in smoking cigarettes. Smoking in general leads to many health problems. This is why it is important to study the relationship between memory functioning in individuals with posttraumatic stress disorder and smoking. Based on these research findings, we propose a study examining the possible difference of memory organization between individuals with PTSD who smoke and those who do not smoke.

Our hypothesis is as follows: smoking is shown to be a short term coping strategy, so it initially may provide the individual with relief from cognitive and affective symptoms. However, oxygen deprivation to the hippocampus of the brain negatively impacts memory processing thus possibly adding to the disorganization of the traumatic memory and increasing its resistance to treatment. Details of the proposed study will be presented including inclusion criteria and method of choice based on past research findings.