Center for Innovation in Behavioral Health Education & Research

The Center for Innovation in Behavioral Health Education & Research at Simmons University (CIBER) is a hub of innovation in training and research in health care, technology, and substance use that aims to serve urban and rural communities by increasing access to high-quality, evidence-informed care.

About the Center for Innovation in Behavioral Health Education & Research

The logo the Center for Innovation in Behavioral Health Education & Research

CIBER focuses on education, research, and innovation in behavioral health, informed by the values of the social work profession and the faculty expertise within the Simmons University School of Social Work (SSW), a distinguished national leader in providing education for the next generation of clinical social workers. The Center builds upon this eminent history and focuses on innovation in three main areas: substance use education and research, with a particular focus on vulnerable and underserved populations; technology, including patient simulation and telebehavioral health; and behavioral health workforce development in the emerging model of integrated primary care and behavioral health in urban and rural areas.

Consistent with the mission of the SSW, a commitment to advancing social justice is a key thread that will run through each area. Populations such as racial and ethnic minorities, sexual and gender minorities, underserved rural communities, and maltreated children are disproportionately and adversely impacted by health inequity, including unequal rates of substance use and substance-related mortality. Incumbent upon any institution founded in social work values is the responsibility to challenge multiple layers of oppression that result in such disparate trends. Through CIBER, we envision joining the values of social work with evidence-based research and technology innovation to challenge inequalities and to guide the ethical provision of substance use services to high-need populations.

Recent Publications

Center for Innovation in Behavioral Health Education & Research

Jennifer M. Putney, Ph.D., LICSW

Director, The Center for Innovation in Behavioral Health Education and Research

Melinda Gushwa, PhD, LICSW

Associate Director, The Center for Innovation in Behavioral Health Education and Research

Cali Ryan Collin, PhD, LICSW

Associate Director of Clinical Training, The Center for Innovation in Behavioral Health Education and Research

Rebekah Halmo, LCSW

Project Manager, The Center for Innovation in Behavioral Health Education and Research

Carlie Capell

Project Coordinator, The Center for Innovation in Behavioral Health Education and Research

Deborah Johnson

Research Assistant, The Center for Innovation in Behavioral Health Education and Research