Region 9 Summer Conference

MSSA Region 9 and MSU, Mankato Dept of Social Work


Thank you to all who attended the 6th Annual Region 9 Summer Conference on May 17! We hope to see you at the Fall Conference on September 27. More details can be found here.

Program Information

Track 1 Sessions
Session 1 | 8:00 - 10:00 AM
Title: Minnesota and Marijuana: Practice and Policy Implications for Social Workers
Presenters: Dr. Ross Aalgaard, DSW, LICSE, LADC, CCTP & Dr. David Beimers, PhD, LISW
Agency: MSU, Mankato Department of Social Work
Level of Difficulty: Introductory
Session Description: Thirty-three states, including Minnesota, have comprehensive public medical marijuana programs. Ten of these states and the District of Columbia have also legalized recreational marijuana use. Public attitudes and laws around marijuana are changing quickly in the US, including here in Minnesota. This presentation addresses 1) Marijuana policy, past and present; 2) Research-informed practice implications for social workers; and 3) Issues with expanded recreational and medical cannabis use.

Session 2 | 10:15 AM - 12:15 PM
Title: Looking Through the Eyes of Trauma: Using Mind-Body Interventions
Presenter: Kathy Flaminio, MSW, LGSW, E-RYT 200
Agency: 1000 Petals, LLC
Level of Difficulty: Open to all levels
Session Description: Using knowledge of trauma, adverse childhood experiences (ACE’s) and mental health diagnoses, participants will experience and explore the power of mind-body interventions for self-regulation, focus, community connection and overall well-being. Through hands-on learning, reflection and discussion participants will experience breathing exercises, simple regulated movement and social/emotional skill development activities to incorporate into a variety of settings. Walk away with a few key strategies for yourself and your students.

Session 3 | 1:00 - 3:00 PM
Title: Integrating Behavioral Health & Primary Care: An opportunity to impact whole health and wellness
Presenter: Pam Pietruszewki, MA
Agency: National Council for Behavioral Health
Level of Difficulty: Introductory to Intermediate
Session Description: The concept of “whole health and wellness” recognizes that our thoughts, feelings, bodies and behaviors are all in the same room when we seek care. The primary care setting is most often the first line of contact when behavioral health (mental health and substance use) concerns arise. Learn what it takes for multidisciplinary clinical teams to deliver evidence-based population health and how leaders can support organizational change to thrive in the changing landscape of healthcare.



Track 2 Sessions
Session 1 | 8:00 - 10:00 AM
Title: Working Effectively with Muslims
Presenter: Jaylani Hussein
Agency: Council on American-Islamic Relations, Minnesota Chapter
Level of Difficulty: Introductory
Session Description: In the majority of complaints of religious, racial, and ethnic discrimination, we have learned that most discrimination occurs because of miscommunication and a lack of understanding of religious practices and culture. Our training will cover three different sections: 1) Bring awareness to eliminate a potential bias; 2) Highlight Muslim demographics and in-depth explanation of the religion and cultural norms, including keywords, holidays, and customs held in Muslim culture; and 3) How to provide religious accommodations. 

Session 2 | 10:15 AM - 12:15 PM
Title: Voting is Social Work: Integrating Voter Engagement into Social Work Practice
Presenter: Katharine Hill, PhD, MSW, MPP
Agency: St. Catherine University-University of St. Thomas School of Social Work
Level of Difficulty: Introductory to Intermediate
Session Description: Social work's ethical commitment to empowerment and social justice makes voter engagement an ethical mandate. Seeing clients as voters affirms their equality as citizens in our democracy and acknowledges the importance of their participation in their communities. In practice, social workers are well-situated to engage clients and agencies in voting and should seek opportunities to do so. Thus, voting as a social work intervention makes practical and ethical good sense.

Session 3 | 1:00 - 3:00 pm
Title: See You At Your House: Ethics and Safety Considerations in Home-Based Services
Presenter: Dr. Annelies Hagemeister, PhD, MSW, LISW & Tina Feigal, M.S. Ed.
Agency: MSU, Mankato Department of Social Work & Anu Family Services & Center for the Challenging Child
Level of Difficulty: Introductory to Intermediate
Session Description: Clients' homes are the locations where many practitioners build relationships and carry out their work. Common for those working in child and family services, adult and child mental health, among others, "home visiting" has a long history. Being "in home," however, tends to change the dynamics of work, may seem more informal, challenges boundary maintenance, and allows for observation in a real setting. It presents a myriad of ethical and safety issues. Presenters will discuss these issues drawing from experience in child and family services.