Overall Rating Bronze - expired
Overall Score 36.72
Liaison Lindsey Abernathy
Submission Date July 17, 2019
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

University of Mississippi
IN-26: Innovation C

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 1.00 / 1.00 Lindsey Abernathy
Associate Director
Office of Sustainability
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Name or title of the innovative policy, practice, program, or outcome:
Disaster Resilience Community of Interest

A brief description of the innovative policy, practice, program, or outcome that outlines how credit criteria are met and any positive measurable outcomes associated with the innovation:
Mississippi has been impacted by multiple natural and manmade disasters, including Hurricane Katrina in 2005 and the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill five years later. The University of Mississippi has responded by prioritizing disaster resilience work, with a focus on the mental health impacts of disasters. Efforts include the creation of the Disaster Resilience research constellation in 2017, which is a community of interest focused on resilient communities, impact of disasters on mental health and other related topics. Through the community of practice, which includes 69 faculty and staff members from the Oxford campus and UM’s medical center, in collaboration with UM’s Clinical Disaster Research Center, UM has introduced a new disaster sciences minor that integrates emergency management with mental health impacts of disasters. According to a statement from UM’s Office of Research and Sponsored Programs, “The initial foci for this constellation are Physical Infrastructures; Community Resilience; Laws, Policies, and Regulations; Health and Environmental Impacts; Public Communication; and Big Data/Analytics. The constellation has received nine proposals under its first seed grants call and has funded six projects. Planning is underway for a Speaker Series that would facilitate the sharing of information about current disaster resilience-related work and encourage the development of new collaborations.” Fourteen students are currently pursuing a Disaster Sciences minor, an interdisciplinary minor started in Fall 2018 by the Clinical-Disaster Research Center in conjunction with the Departments of Psychology, Criminal Justice, Sociology, and Social Work. The Disaster Sciences minor requires students to complete 18 credit hours, including two courses that provide a foundational experience — Emergency Management and Criminal Justice (CJ 325) and Disasters and Mental Health (PSY 417).” About the Clinical Disaster Research Center – UM is home to the Clinical Disaster Research Center, which has the mission to “integrate service, training, and research in disaster mental health. We seek to develop evidence-based disaster preparedness, mitigation, and response practices to meet the needs of the University, local community, and region. The UM-CDRC strives to better understand the experiences of those affected by disasters and how they cope with these events. Research is conducted to devise, implement, and evaluate empirically-based disaster preparedness, mitigation, and response programs with the intent of minimizing risk factors and maximizing protective factors. With rigorous, systematic research as a foundation, and with expertise in clinical, community, multicultural, and positive psychology, the UM-CDRC works to understand how concepts like resilience, self-efficacy, and perceived meaning foster disaster recovery and posttraumatic growth.”

Which of the following impact areas does the innovation most closely relate to? (select up to three):
Public Engagement

A letter of affirmation from an individual with relevant expertise or a press release or publication featuring the innovation :

The website URL where information about the programs or initiatives is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:

Data source(s) and notes about the submission:

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