Report: Supported education improves career prospects for young people dealing with mental illness

RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, NC – Young people with mental illness can benefit greatly from a promising intervention called Supported Education that has the potential to improve future wage earnings and employment prospects, according to a report by RTI International and the University of Massachusetts Medical School.

Supported Education interventions aim to improve an individual’s chances of long-term employment success by focusing on skill, career, and educational opportunities within postsecondary educational environments.

“Many times young adults’ first onset of mental illness occurs developmentally just as they’re in the midst of post-secondary education,” said Heather Ringeisen, Ph.D., director, Center for Behavioral Health and Development at RTI and lead author of the report. “Most have to drop out of trade/vocational or other higher education experiences as a result of impairment associated with their illness. Most never return. This promising intervention approach assists these individuals so they can continue their education. This is important because we know there are very strong links between educational achievement and meaningful career-oriented employment and then between stable employment and reduced risk for negative outcomes including drug abuse, poverty, and violence.”


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