In the next 15 years, Nebraska will lose half of its current mental health workforce. BHECN’s Ambassador Program creates a pipeline of Nebraska students interested in behavioral health beginning as early as their high school years. It follows students from high school & college, through professional school, and on to careers in behavioral health professions. To date, more than 2,000 students have participated since the BHECN Ambassador program started in April 2013.
What is BHECN Ambassador Program?
The BHECN Ambassador Program introduces rural students to behavioral health careers. It recruits and mentors students — from high school to college through professional school — and into practice as behavioral health professionals.
By connecting students from rural communities with information and resources to explore behavioral health careers, we are growing our own future behavioral health workforce.
BHECN's impact on Nebraska High School Students
The BHECN Ambassador Program reaches students from all corners of the state. As of September 2016, the program has reached students in 73 of Nebraska’s 93 counties.
Are students interested in behavioral health careers?
Very interested. For example:
- At career day events at UNMC, UNK, Wayne State, and Hastings College, 155 out of 268 rural high school attendees expressed interest in behavioral health careers after a brief presentation.
- BHECN’s High School Ambassador Conference in April 2013 hosted 29 students from 16 Nebraska communities. In 2016, that number jumped to 72 high school juniors and seniors attended the conference from 37 communities across Nebraska.
- Among high school participants, 67% expressed interest in a career in behavioral health.
- Of 41 students who have participated in our College Ambassador Conference and graduated college, 12 enrolled at UNMC (5 in medical school, 5 in pharmacy, and 2 in nursing).