New Faculty Member Joining IUPUC Graduate Program in Mental Health Counseling

July 31, 2018
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Effective August 1, 2018, Dr. Brian Russ will join the faculty of the IUPUC Master of Arts in Mental Health Counseling program as an Assistant Professor.

Russ brings extensive clinical and administrative experience having served as a community mental health counselor and administrator in White Cloud, Michigan for over a decade. In his most recent position, as director for community support services at Newaygo County Mental Health, Russ managed a team of 15 masters’ level clinicians providing outpatient, crisis, and integrated behavioral healthcare services. Russ also led the development of a medication assisted treatment program for individuals with opioid dependence.

A licensed professional counselor in the state of Michigan, Russ earned his Doctor of Philosophy degree in Counselor Education and Supervision from Western Michigan University. He earned his Master of Arts in Community Counseling from Indiana Wesleyan University and a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from Spring Arbor University. He has also been named a Diplomate and Clinical Mental Health Specialist in Child and Adolescent Counseling by the American Mental Health Counselors Association.

Russ’s arrival coincides with faculty efforts to enhance graduate level addictions training in the counseling program. In fact, there are plans to add three courses in the assessment, diagnosis, and treatment of substance abuse to the curriculum. It is anticipated that Russ will contribute to these efforts to keep program coursework current.

“Dr. Russ’s arrival and these new courses strengthened the rigorous coursework and supervised practice currently experienced by our students,” graduate program director Darrin Carr said. “And his expertise in child and adolescent counseling will complement the specialties of our current faculty. Our program, IUPUC, Columbus, and the south central Indiana community will certainly benefit from his experience and future work.”

After settling into his new role, Russ hopes to continue his research into addictions treatment and how to best train counselors to work with children and adolescents. During the fall semester, Russ will meet with members of the mental health counseling community to learn more about the area and its needs. “I am very excited to join the faculty at IUPUC’s cutting edge Mental Health Counseling program. The program’s plan to provide additional training in addictions speaks to their focus on preparing mental health counselors to meet the current challenges impacting our communities. As the opioid crisis ravages our nation, it is heartening that IUPUC Mental Health Counseling graduates will be even more prepared to make an immediate impact in southern Indiana. Hopefully, we can continue to do our part to turn the tide on this epidemic,” Russ said.