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Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences

2nd Annual Spring Social Work Conference




Social Work Here and Now: Bridging Today's Issues Into Tomorrow's Solutions

 Friday, April 22, 2016 
 MUSC Bioengineering Building, Room 110 |  68 President Street |   Charleston, SC 29425 

Statement of Purpose

Social workers regularly interact with a diverse group of clients with ever changing needs and unique challenges. Join us for one full day of education and networking as we address current issues. This conference will be held on the MUSC campus in a new state-of-the- art facility in the heart of downtown Charleston.
Topics include criminal and domestic violence; human trafficking; dementia and caregiver issues; motivational interviewing; internet safety, including social media; and more.

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Program Objectives

At the end of this program, participants will be able to:
Evidence about encouraging evidence-based treatment: Lessons learned from Project BEST
  • Define what an evidence-based treatment is.
  • Describe fundamental principles of dissemination and implementation
  • Describe common barriers to service systems using evidence-based interventions

What in the World are Kids Doing Online?  Tips on internet safety (including social media)

  • Discuss various ways kids are using the internet or social media in inappropriate ways.
  • List several ways cyberbullying can be effectively handled
  • Use current events as teaching moments to reach kids at risk
Motivational Interviewing Strategies and Techniques
  • Express empathy by use of reflective listening;
  • Develop discrepancy between client goals and current problem behavior by use of reflective listening and objective feedback.
  • Avoid argumentation by assuming that the client is responsible for the decision to change and supporting self-efficacy and optimism for change.

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Conference Faculty


Rachael J. Garrett, MSW
Director of Education and Community Services 
Dee Norton Lowcountry Children's center (DNLCC)

Rachael J. Garrett, MSW, is the Director of Education and Community Services at the Dee Norton Lowcountry Children’s Center (DNLCC), a children’s advocacy center in Charleston, SC. Prior to earning her Master of Social Work from The Catholic University of America, she lived and worked with children exposed to violence in Honduras, Central America. She joined the staff at DNLCC in 2008 as a forensic interviewer for alleged child maltreatment victims and also provided mental health treatment to child victims and their families. As the Director of Education and Community Services, Rachael oversees the coordination of DNLCC’s multidisciplinary response to children and families through partnering with community agencies to ensure a collaborated and trauma-informed community response to child abuse. She trains professionals in the impact of abuse and trauma on children and families, and in the evidence-based services and best practices for child victims and their families. Rachael has served on the board of the South Carolina Network of Children’s Advocacy Centers and is a member of the faculty of Project BEST, a community-based training and implementation model for trauma-focused cognitive behavioral therapy (TF-CBT), disseminated across South Carolina through children’s advocacy centers and their multidisciplinary teams.  


Sharon V. Frazier, LMSW, ACM
Social Worker/Case Manager
RHJ VA Hospital
Sharon V. Frazier is a Licensed Masters Social Worker (LMSW) and Accredited Case Manager for Hospitals and Medical Systems. She is currently preparing to sit for the Independent Clinical Social Worker Exam. Sharon has more than 12 years’ experience dedicated to the Human Services and Social Work fields, with a focus on health care services. Presently, she is a HUD-VASH Social Work Case Manager with the Ralph H. Johnson Veterans Administration Hospital, in the Mental Health department.  In her current position, she works with a team of professionals dedicated to ensuring homeless Veterans obtain stable, affordable housing.

Sharon received her Bachelors degree in Social Work from South Carolina State University, and Master’s degree in Social Work from the University of South Carolina.  Sharon has had broad work experience in the areas of long term care, acute care case management, grant writing and management, primary health care social work, and managed Medicaid & Medicare; this includes being the Director of Social Services at three major skilled nursing facilities, supervisor of Case Management with a national managed Medicaid & Medicare company, and an Administrator with a county Board of Special Needs & Disabilities.

She has served in the past as the co-chairman of a state Human Needs committee, the Board of a Home Health Agency, Charleston’s Homelessness Coalition, and a consultant for a local women’s center.
“It is my hope to use my professional knowledge and skills to empower the vulnerable and less fortunate populations”.


Lloyd J Hale II

Patients Affairs Coordinator/ Certified Peer Support Specialist
Charleston Dorchester Mental Health Center (SCDMH)

Lloyd Hale, CPSS Charleston-Dorchester MHC, South Carolina Department of Mental Health Lloyd J Hale II is a Certified Peer Support Specialist (CPSS) and the Client Affairs Coordinator at the Charleston-Dorchester MHC.  Lloyd received his Peer Support Certification in 2004. As a Peer Specialist, Lloyd works with clients providing an array of services to promote recovery and help them learn to direct their own treatment process. He has also partnered with SC SHARE, NAMI, MHA and SAMSHA to present the “Ready for Life Project” and “The Dream Team”, in which he uses his personal experience with mental illness and recovery to promote public awareness and community opportunity, provide the hope of recovery, address the obstacles of culture, decrease the stigma associated with mental illness and provide information on treatment and recovery options. As Founder of the organization “RIDE4SPMI” (ride 4 severe and persistent mental illness), an organization designed to empower those with psychiatric disorders, Lloyd organizes statewide bicycle adventures and community rallies to address stigma and facilitate recovery discussions.

A Story of Recovery - Take a brief look into Lloyds journey.



Sonya Jenkins, MSW

County Director
Charleston Mental Health Center
West Ashley Clinic
Sonya Jenkins is the County Director of the Charleston Mental Health Center West Ashley Clinic located at 2100 Charlie Hall Blvd., Charleston, S.C.  Ms. Jenkins has more than 20 years of experience in the field of mental health, providing treatment to adults, children, adolescents, and their families.

As a licensed social worker, she conducts a grief group. Her aim is to provide healing support in a safe and healthy environment.  Ms. Jenkins is also a Designated Examiner for Charleston County Probate Court.  She serves as a field instructor for social work interns at the University of South Carolina, and  served as a school based therapist for many years, treating children and their families in the Charleston County School District.

One of her many accomplishments was assessing and treating children who were victims of sexual or physical abuse and their families using evidence based practices. Participating in this Multi-Systemic Therapy (M.S.T.) research study as a therapist strengthened her commitment to maintaining fidelity to evidence based practices.  She appreciates the manner in which these therapeutic modalities encourage the therapist to remain faithful to providing therapeutic interventions which support successful outcomes for their clients.

Ms. Jenkins received her Bachelor of Arts Degree from Limestone College and her Master of Social Work Degree from the University of South Carolina. She is committed to breaking down the counter- productive walls of stigma surrounding mental illness.


Jonathan Kessler, MSW
Supervisor of Inpatient Social Work
RHJ VA Hospital
Barbara Melton, M.Ed., LPC, NCC, MAC
Licensed Professional Counselor and President-Elect of SC Assn for LPCs
Barbara Melton is a Licensed Professional Counselor in Private Practice in downtown Charleston and Summerville who has been working with clients since 1991.  She co-authored the book What in the World are your Kids Doing Online (published by Random House/Doubleday) with Sue Shankle.  Her specialties include working with clients who self-injure, and working with PTSD/trauma/loss.  She is also an adjunct professor at Webster University.


Benjamin E. Saunders, PhD, LISW
Professor & Associate Director, NCVC
Medical University of South Carolina

Dr. Ben Saunders is a Professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at the Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston, SC and Associate Director of the National Crime Victims Research and Treatment Center. Dr. Saunders received his Ph.D. in clinical social work from Florida State University in 1982 and is a Licensed Independent Social Worker-Clinical Practice in South Carolina. His research, training, and clinical interests include the initial and long term impact of violence and abuse on children and adolescents; the epidemiology of trauma, violence, and abuse; treatment approaches for abused children and their families; the use of technology in mental health training and service delivery; and innovative methods for disseminating and implementing evidence supported interventions in community service agencies. His work has been funded by government and private agencies such as the National Institute of Mental Health, the National Institute on Drug Abuse, the National Institute on Child Health and Human Development, the National Institute of Justice, the National Center on Child Abuse and Neglect, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, the Office for Victims of Crime, the U.S. Department of the Navy, The Duke Endowment and the Annie E. Casey Foundation. In 2001 Dr. Saunders received the Research Career Achievement Award from the American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children and in 2008 was invited to deliver the APSAC William Friedrich Memorial Lecture. In addition to his research and teaching activities, Dr. Saunders provides clinical supervision, consultation, training, and program consultation concerning mental health treatment of abused children and their families, and is a frequent lecturer and trainer at national and international conferences.



Natasha Simeon-Major, LISW-CP
Medical Foster Home Coordinator
RHJ VA Hospital

Natasha Simeon-Major is a Licensed Independent Social Worker  with 16 years of experience in the field of Social Work.  She earned a Bachelor’s degree in Social Work from Benedict College and Master’s degree in Social Work from the University of South Carolina. Natasha has worked in a variety of social work settings to include the Department of Social Services, Department of Juvenile Justice and the Department of Mental Health. She worked independently for over ten years as a Certified Adoption Investigator, certifying adoptive and foster families for the Department of Social Services. The bulk of Natasha’s experience has been in medical social work. For five years, Natasha worked as a medical social worker at the Medical University of South Carolina as a social worker in the ICU and infant and toddler wards. She transitioned to the Ralph H. Johnson VA Medical Center (VAMC) and worked as a Social Worker on the inpatient mental health ward and later as a Social Work Case Manager with HUD-VASH.Natasha is currently employed at the Ralph H. Johnson VA Medical Center as the Medical Foster Home (MFH) Coordinator.  She was hired to develop, coordinate and manage the first Medical Foster Home program at the Ralph H. Johnson VAMC. Natasha was appointed and serves as a member of the Medical Foster Home National Field Advisory Board where she along with six other coordinators work to inform MFH policy and best practices. Natasha is passionate about working with the elderly and other vulnerable populations.  

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Preliminary Conference Agenda (Times and Topics are subject to change)

Friday, April 22, 2015
7:30 - 7:55 a.m.
Registration & Continental Breakfast
7:55 - 8:00 a.m.
Welcome and Introductions
8:00 - 9:00 a.m.
Evidence About Encouraging Evidence-based Treatment: Lessons Learned from Project BEST
Ben Saunders, PhD, LISW
9:00 - 10:00 a.m.
Collaborative Approaches to Serving Sexually Exploited Youth
Rachael Garret, LMSW
10:00 - 10:15 a.m.
10:15 - 11:15 a.m.
Home is Where the Heart Is.. The Ralph H. Johnson VAMC Medical Foster Home Program, Fostering Families and Creating Solutions for Long Term Care for the Demented Patient
Natasha Simeon-Major, LISW
11:15 a.m. - 12:15 p.m.
Motivational Interviewing Strategies and Techniques
Sharon Frazier, LMSW, ACM
12:15 - 1:00 p.m.

Lunch Break


1:00 - 2:30 p.m.
What in the World are Kids Doing Online?  Tips on iIternet Safety (Including Social Media)
Barbara Melton, M.Ed, LPC, NCC and Jonathan Kessler, MSW
2:30 - 4:00 p.m.
The Good, The Bad and The Recovery
 Lloyd J. Hale, II, Peer Support Specialist and Sonya Jenkins, MSW
4:00 p.m.
Closing Remarks & Adjourn

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Venue and Parking

This workshop will be held on the MUSC campus:

MUSC Bioengineering Building, Room 110

68 President Street
Charleston, SC 29425

View a map and directions to the Bioengineering Building

Parking is available in the MUSC Jonathan Lucas Street Garage (97 Jonathan Lucas Street, not the Roper garage) and the Courtenay Street Parking Garage.

Click here for directions to the MUSC Visitor Parking facilities.

Traffic into Charleston during rush hour can be extremely congested. Therefore, it is strongly recommended that you carpool if possible.


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Conference Accommodations

Francis Marion Hotel
387 King Street
Charleston, SC 29403

View the Francis Marion Hotel website for a map and directions.


Courtyard Charleston Waterfront
35 Lockwood Drive
Charleston, SC 29425

View the Courtyard Charleston Waterfront website for a map and directions.


Hilton Garden Inn
45 Lockwood Drive
Charleston, SC 29401

View the Hilton Garden Inn Charleston website for a map and directions.

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Registration fee includes conference materials, continuing education credit processing, continental breakfast, lunch, and breaks.
Registration Type
Regular Registration
General Registration
MUSC Employees
BSW/MSW Students

*Please note, to receive the early registration rate, your registration and payment must be received on or before March 31, 2016.

There are three ways to register:
1.  Click here to register online and pay with a credit card.
2.  Click here to register online and mail in payment.
3.  Click here to download a printable registration form and mail in payment.

If you are employed by a STATE AGENCY and are paying with an ACH transfer, you MUST contact our office at (843) 792-0175 prior to initiating the transfer or your registration will not be accepted.

If you are employed by MUSC a state purchasing card (P-Card) may not be used for registration fees. Please submit an IIT made out to:

             The Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Science
             Continuing Education Office
             67 President Street, MSC 861
             Charleston, SC 29425

You will receive a confirmation letter via e-mail once your registration is processed. If you do not receive a confirmation letter within two weeks of registering, please contact our Continuing Education Office at (843)792-0175 to ensure your registration has been received.

Registration fees are transferable from one registrant to another. Cancellation requests received on or after April 1, 2016 are subject to a $30 administrative fee. Refunds will not be issued after 11:59 p.m. EST on Tuesday, April 20, 2016.

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Credit Designation

  • The South Carolina Board of Examiners in Psychology will approve 7.0 Category A credits.
  • The South Carolina Board of Social Work Examiners will approve 7.0 hours of designated credit.
  • The South Carolina Board of Examiners for Licensure of Professional Counselors, Marriage and Family Therapists and Psycho-Educational Specialists will approve 7.0 hours of continuing education credit.

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Visitor Information

Charleston is a place where sand castles are built across the harbor from historic forts, where children ride scooters down 300-year-old streets, and where you can see modern theater in America’s oldest playhouse. Less than 15 miles away, you can stroll the gardens of the beautiful plantations, bask in the sun on wide sandy beaches, sail, play golf, tennis or ride bikes on a luxurious island resort.
Charleston Area Convention and Visitors Bureau
(843) 853-8000

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Americans with Disabilities Act

It is the policy of the Medical University of South Carolina not to discriminate against any person on the basis of disabilities. If you need the services of the auxiliary aids mentioned in this act in order to fully participate in this continuing medical education activity, please bring this to our attention upon registering for the event.

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Questions?  Contact us: or (843) 792-0175

Presented by the Medical University of South Carolina Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences


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