New State-of-the-Art Facility to Deliver Top Quality Care to Veterans

March 7, 2017 - The University of Memphis has announced plans for a new Veterans Care Center (VCC), an outpatient facility to be located on the UofM campus. The center is made possible through a gift targeting veterans in honor of President M. David Rudd. It could become a critical hub in the community, serving veterans in multiple ways and providing training and consultation to the professional community. Embedded within the Psychological Services Center, the VCC will offer veterans intervention and assessment based on the most up-to-date research, and will be a research clinic where new therapies are developed.

The VCC will address the mental health needs of veterans regardless of era, gender, discharge status or service connection. The center will offer services to military and veteran families who are experiencing difficulties related to post-deployment readjustment, and will provide assessments and treatment for problems such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression, anxiety disorders and substance misuse.

"The UofM is taking great strides toward providing a campus community that is inclusive and welcoming for our military veterans from the general Memphis community," said Dr. Jim Whelan, director of the Psychological Services Center. "This facility is another crucial step toward ensuring that we are equipped to meet the needs of our servicemen and women."

The VCC will collaborate with the Shelby County Veterans Court to provide assessment and treatment services. It will also partner with the Veterans Resource Center on campus to offer consultation, briefings or group discussions about adjusting to these different expectations. Challenges for the veteran student population relate to the management of symptoms of PTSD, traumatic brain injury (TBI), or other symptoms within the academic environment. PTSD and TBI both can have damaging effects on one's ability to concentrate and retain information on tasks with a high cognitive load, like college-level course work. The VCC will offer services for veterans who are coping with these challenges about developing study skills and other academic strategies. Additionally, graduate clinicians will conduct psychological assessments. A veteran-specific assessment clinic operated within the VCC will provide an opportunity for veterans to obtain detailed information about their cognitive strengths and weaknesses, along with recommended strategies for coping with more challenging tasks.

The VCC will allow for greater continuity of care for veterans. It could fill a niche in the community, providing training and consultation for mental health care providers who seek to understand, assess and treat the mental, emotional and behavioral wounds of war.

Contact: Jamel Major