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HONORS COLLEGE

Honors Internships [HNRS 481N]

Honors students and faculty value experiential education, and one way to achieve that is through internships. In this for-credit, community-based course, students will work on projects that include a great deal of self-direction and innovation. Honors has partnered with WSU's Center for Community Support and Research, an organization that has five distinct pillars of service, to offer both solo and team-based internships. While each project is different, students often provide assistance with administering surveys or interviews, data entry and analysis, report development, or locating background literature. CCSR requires students to provide at least a four hour per week commitment (1 credit hour=3 hours of work per week). If you have any questions about the descriptions below, contact our office at honors@wichita.edu or (316) 978-3375 or Teresa Strausz, LMSW, MSOD at (316) 978-6778 or teresa.strausz@wichita.edu.

Our current projects include:

Evaluation of Mental Health Consumer Initiatives

The Center for Community Support and Research works on a variety of projects related to mental health consumer initiatives. Research projects include: a longitudinal study of the integration of the Certified Peer Specialist role into the Kansas mental health system, Trauma Informed Care models, and Consumer Transition Coordinator programs.   This research serves to inform the larger mental health consumer initiatives team, as well as local and state mental health authorities.  Specific opportunities could include:

  • Survey administration (in-person, via telephone or web-based)
  • Data entry (including quantitative data in Excel/SPSS)
  • Data analysis (including frequencies/descriptive statistics and coding)
  • Review of mental health consumer literature
  • Assistance with report development (including tables and other data summaries as needed)
  • Assistance with the development of materials for publication and/or presentation

A student may work for one, two or more semesters, depending on performance. The student’s primary contact on will be the Research/Evaluation Coordinator and other CCSR staff as required by the student’s departmental requirements.  Students must be available at least 4 hours per week.

Evaluation of Kansas Leadership Efforts

The Research/Evaluation Team at the Center for Community Support and Research (CCSR) provides research and evaluation support for all leadership activities conducted by the Center for Community Support and Research.  This team is also involved in evaluating the work of a leadership development organization focused on cultivating civic leadership in Kansas.  A student serving on the Leadership Evaluation Team will participate in all aspects of the evaluation process.  Specific opportunities could include:

  • Review of leadership literature and/or information on other leadership programs.
  • Development of feedback forms and/or other survey instruments.
  • Administration of feedback forms (including in person, via telephone, and/or online).
  • Data entry (including quantitative data in Excel/SPSS and qualitative data in Word/NVivo).
  • Data analysis (including frequencies/descriptive statistics and coding).
  • Assistance with report development (including tables and other data summaries as needed).

A student may work for one, two or more semesters, depending on performance.  The student’s primary contact on will be the Leadership Evaluation Team facilitator and other CCSR staff as required by the departmental requirements.  Students must be available at least 4 hours per week.

Evaluation of Health and Wellness Community Transformation Grant

The Research/Evaluation Team at the Center for Community Support and Research (CCSR) provides research and evaluation support for a grant focused on increasing healthy nutrition, increased physical activity and reduced tobacco use in the city of Wichita.  A student serving on the Health and Wellness Community Transformation Evaluation Team will participate in all aspects of the evaluation process.  Specific opportunities could include:

  • Review of literature and/or information on health and wellness issues.
  • Survey administration (in person, via telephone, and/or online).
  • Data entry (including quantitative data in Excel/SPSS and qualitative data in Word).
  • Data analysis (including frequencies/descriptive statistics and coding).
  • Assistance with report development (including tables and other data summaries as needed).

A student may work for one, two or more semesters, depending on performance.  The student’s primary contact on will be the Health and Wellness Community Transformation Evaluation Team facilitator and other CCSR staff as required by the departmental requirements.  Students must be available at least 4 hours per week.

Capturing the Historical Perspective of the Mental Health Movement

Mental Health Initiatives (MHI) Team at the Center for Community Support and Research (CCSR) is a 10+ year initiative designed to strengthen the effectiveness and efficiency of the Kansas mental health system.  Understanding and capturing the history of the mental health movement and the experiences of consumers/survivors/ex-patients will shed light on what will strengthen the current and future system of mental health and wellness. The power of story and mutuality as a form of connection for healing and recovery is gaining significance in the mental health system. Specific opportunities for this project could include:

  • Review of mental health consumer literature and interviewing mental health consumers, particularly regarding the history of the mental health consumer/survivor/ex-patient movement.
  • Contributing to an article or report summarizing stories and findings
  • Assistance with the development of materials for publication and/or presentation, especially the Certified Peer Specialist Newsletter.
  • Assistance creating and delivering curriculum for training peer supporters in a variety of contexts. 

A student may work for one or more semesters depending on performance and project completion. The student’s primary contact will be an identified staff from the MHI/CPS team. History or English majors strongly encouraged for this project, but any students with interest in this project should certainly apply. Students should be available at least 6 hours per week.

Promoting Support Group Services to Kansas Medicaid Providers and Recipients

The Self Help Group Team at the Center for Community Support and Research (CCSR) is working with Kansas Health Solutions on the Kansas Medicaid Self-Help Initiative. The team is promoting self-help groups to Kansas Medicaid providers.  Support groups are available for many different concerns, including alcohol addiction, parenting, physical health concerns, caregiving, and mental health concerns.  A student serving on the Support Group Services Team will participate in all aspects of the promotion process.  Specific opportunities could include:

  • Maintain an online searchable database of over 2,500 local and national support groups
  • Create and provide training opportunities for Medicaid professionals
  • Explore new ways in which to connect professional and support group systems of support
  • Perform a needs assessment of Medicaid providers regarding how CCSR can support their use of support groups
  • Provide assistance to support groups to better serve Medicaid recipients
  • Gather and help prepare materials for presentations and conference booth displays.

A student may work for one, two or more semesters, depending on performance. The student’s primary contact on will be the Support Group Team facilitator and other CCSR staff as required by the student’s departmental requirements.  Students must be available at least 6 hours per week. 

Community Collaborations and Organizational Capacity Building

The Community and Organizational Development (COD) team at the Center for Community Support and Research (CCSR) provides organizational capacity building that helps staff, volunteers, and board members set direction, create strategies, work together more effectively, and monitor their progress. An intern serving on the Community and Organizational Development (COD) team will participate in projects involving process design, facilitation, coordination with other teams, and report writing.  The COD team projects include, but are not limited to, such activities as:

  • Facilitating community coalitions comprised of individuals and organizations designed to address concerns such as substance abuse, domestic violence, or child abuse fatality prevention;
  • Facilitating community input sessions for nonprofit organizations or local/state governments;
  • Providing technical assistance to nonprofit organizations, coalitions or collaborative efforts, or community foundations on topics such as board development, volunteer management, or fund development.

Specific opportunities could include:

  • Process design and facilitation for organizations and collaborative efforts.
  • Development and support at workshops/trainings.
  • Database management.
  • Program evaluation or assessment.

Depending on the skills and interests of the intern, there may be additional opportunities for special projects such as:

  • Contributing to CCSR social media and marketing efforts related to COD work.
  • Following up with all previous COD clients to survey how things are going.
  • Managing contact databases.

A student may work for one, two or more semesters, depending on performance. The student’s primary contact on the COD team will be the COD team facilitator and other CCSR staff as required by the student’s departmental requirements. The student must be available at least 4 hours per week.  The COD team is particularly interested in applications from graduate students interested in nonprofit organizations, public administration, social work, marketing, or business.

Development of Trauma-Informed Care Services

Mental Health Initiatives (MHI) Team at the Center for Community Support and Research (CCSR) is a 10+ year initiative designed to strengthen the effectiveness and efficiency of the Kansas mental health system.  Over the past several years it has increasingly been recognized that exposure to trauma impacts the long-term mental health and well-being of individuals.  Students will have the opportunity for hands-on development and support of the trauma-informed care (TIC) initiative which includes assessing the current status of TIC in Kansas and training Medicaid system partners and service consumers regarding the relationship of TIC to service efficacy.  Students will have the following potential opportunities:

  • Assist in the development and implementation of TIC organizational assessment process.
  • Assist in the design and update of training materials related to TIC.
  • Create a concept paper related to TIC efforts nationally with recommendations for Kansas efforts.

The student position will require a minimum of 6 hours per week.  A student may work for one, two or more semesters, depending on performance. The student’s primary contact will be a CCSR staff member on the MHI team.  The MHI team is particularly interested in students from the Social Sciences, Communications, Public Administration/Urban Studies, and Health Services Management and Community Development.

Examining the Integration of Mental Health and Physical Health Services

Mental Health Initiatives (MHI) Team at the Center for Community Support and Research (CCSR) is a 10+ year initiative designed to strengthen the effectiveness and efficiency of the Kansas mental health system.  The Medicaid mental health service system in Kansas has recognized that many mental health consumers have long-term physical health concerns.  At the same time, mental health and physical health services are rarely coordinated contributing to poorer health outcomes and additional service costs.  Students will have the following potential opportunities:

  • Examine current integration efforts in Kansas between primary care and mental health practitioners.
  • Assist in the development and implementation of integration efforts.
  • Assist in the design and delivery of trainings and facilitations related to integration.

The student position will require a minimum of 6 hours per week.  A student may work for one, two or more semesters, depending on performance. The student’s primary contact will be a CCSR staff member on the MHI team.  The MHI team is particularly interested in students from the Social Sciences, Communications, Public Administration/Urban Studies, and Health Services Management and Community Development.     

Development of Advanced Training for Certified Peer Specialists

Mental Health Initiatives (MHI) Team at the Center for Community Support and Research (CCSR) is a 10+ year initiative designed to strengthen the effectiveness and efficiency of the Kansas mental health system.  As part of this initiative, CCSR staff work closely with partners across the state in training and supporting Certified Peer Specialists (CPS).  CPSs are mental health consumers who provide guidance and support to other mental health consumers in the Medicaid service system.  CPSs work in mental health centers across Kansas.  Students will be involved in the development of a Blackboard class for online advanced training of Certified Peer Specialists.  Students will have the following potential opportunities:

  • Tracking materials, group membership and training completion for CPS online advanced trainings.
  • Helping develop communication protocols and standards between trainers and trainees for CPS online training.
  • Coordinating blackboard materials and curriculum.
  • Development and implementation and other communication strategies.

The student position will require a minimum of 6 hours per week.  A student may work for one, two or more semesters, depending on performance. The student’s primary contact will be a CCSR staff member on the MHI team.  Ideally, the student would self-identify as a mental-health consumer; this is preferable but not necessary.  There is a possibility for some in-state travel.  The MHI team is particularly interested in students from the Social Sciences, Communications, Public Administration/Urban Studies, and Health Services Management and Community Development.     

Support of a Certified Peer Specialist Newsletter

Mental Health Initiatives (MHI) Team at the Center for Community Support and Research (CCSR) is a 10+ year initiative designed to strengthen the effectiveness and efficiency of the Kansas mental health system.  As part of this initiative, CCSR staff work closely with partners across the state in training and supporting Certified Peer Specialists (CPS).  CPSs are mental health consumers who provide guidance and support to other mental health consumers in the Medicaid service system.  CPSs work in mental health centers across Kansas.  The development of a professional newsletter for and with content provided by CPSs would help advance the profession in the state of Kansas.  Students will have the following potential opportunities:

  • Organization of newsletter content (soliciting articles from CPSs; making and maintaining contacts; managing announcements from MHCs, CROs, KHS, etc.).
  • Providing layout and design for the newsletter.
  • Writing newsletter content when needed.

The student position will require a minimum of 6 hours per week.  A student may work for one, two or more semesters, depending on performance. The student’s primary contact will be a CCSR staff member on the MHI team.  Ideally, the student would self-identify as a mental-health consumer; this is preferable but not necessary.  There is a possibility for some in-state travel.  The MHI team is particularly interested in students from the Social Sciences, Communications, Public Administration/Urban Studies, and Health Services Management and Community Development.     

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