North Carolina AHEC Program
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SEAHEC's Pacelli Attends Carter Symposium on Mental Health Policy

Sheryl Pacelli, MEdSheryl Pacelli, MEd, director of mental health at SEAHEC and Bob Goodale, director of the Citizen Soldier Support Program, had the honor of being invited to attend the 26th Annual Rosalynn Carter Symposium on Mental Health Policy on November 3-4, 2010. The Carter Symposium, held at the Carter Center in Atlanta, Georgia, selects a pertinent mental health topic each year and invites mental health professionals from across the country to gather and focus on an issue of common concern. This year the topic was “A Veteran's Journey Home: Reintegrating Our National Guard and Reservists into Family, Community, and Workplace.”

Pacelli (photo right) and Goodale have been instrumental in developing a nationally-recognized Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and Traumatic Brain Injury training program for mental health professionals. These training materials identify the unique issues that returning veterans face and give mental health professionals the tools to better treat those symptoms. Pacelli and Goodale submitted a poster presentation on their work and it was accepted for display at the Carter Symposium.

The Carter Center was started by President Jimmy and First Lady Rosalyn Carter in partnership with Emory University. The Carter Center “is guided by a fundamental commitment to human rights and the alleviation of human suffering; it seeks to prevent and resolve conflicts, enhance freedom and democracy, and improve health.” Rosalyn Carter attended every session over the two-day conference. Pacelli said it was an honor to be invited and she even worked up the nerve to speak to Mrs. Carter at a reception. They had a nice chat about Atlanta, where Pacelli went to graduate school, and about Carter’s grandchildren.