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Loyola receives gift from the Kahlert Foundation for mental health training and services

Loyola University Maryland sign in front of the Fernandez Center

The Kahlert Foundation has given $100,000 to Loyola University Maryland to support access to mental health counseling and expand training of school counselors. The gift will offer discounted mental health counseling to clients at the Loyola Clinical Centers (LCC) and provide professional development to K–12 school counselors who train future school counselors.

“These training opportunities are a wonderful example of the School of Education’s commitment to create innovative opportunities to meet the needs of our graduate students, the children and adolescents they serve, and our school community partners,” said Afra Hersi, Ph.D., interim dean of the School of Education.

The School of Education faculty will provide professional development opportunities and training for 24 school counselors who are site supervisors at their schools. Recognizing that children in schools face significant trauma and marginalization due to poverty, crime, and the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Kahlert Foundation's support for this train-the-trainer program will improve K–12 students’ access to high-quality counseling in schools.

“Ultimately, by facilitating exceptional professional development for site supervisors in the Baltimore region, new school counselors will be better prepared to support the mental health needs of students in K-12 settings,” said Gayle Cicero, Ed.D., clinical assistant professor in School Counseling. “Additionally, new school counselors will be well-positioned to be systematic change agents that influence school settings to better meet the complex mental health needs of young people.”

The Kahlert Foundation’s gift will also allow the LCC to provide more individuals, children, and families with reduced or waived fees so they may access the mental health services they need.

As a mission-driven graduate student training clinic, the LCC serves more than 1,000 clients annually and provides access to care to all regardless of their ability to pay.

“We believe care—not cost—should be the driving force and this gift will enhance our already discounted fee structure,” said Kara Vincent, executive director of the LCC. “In 2022, the LCC discounted more than $250,000 worth of services, with more than half of that to behavioral health services. The mental health challenges that our clients face are significant and can be overwhelming. The generous gift by the Kahlert Foundation allows clients to focus on their care and will impact many children and adults seeking mental health services at the LCC. We are grateful for the foundation’s support of our mission-driven work.”

“The Kahlert Foundation is honored to partner with Loyola to ensure a strong network of school counselors grades K-12 and open access to behavioral health services in the community,” said Ellen Finnerty Myers, executive director of the Kahlert Foundation.

More about the Kahlert Foundation

The Kahlert Foundation's mission is to provide grants to non-profit organizations to improve the quality of life and well-being of the community in the areas of health care, education, youth programs, veteran organizations, and human services. The foundation’s focus is the states of Maryland and Utah.