Workforce Education & Training (WET)

Education. Vocation. Transformation.”

WET is a component of the Mental Health Services Act (MHSA).  The authors of MHSA realized that people – a quality workforce – were necessary for the true transformation of the public mental health service system.  WET’s mission is to:
Recruit, retain, and develop a recovery-oriented, public mental health workforce

  • Reduce workforce disparities by increasing workforce cultural and linguistic diversity and improving cultural competency
  • Transform through the meaningful inclusion of consumers and family members into the public mental health workforce
  • Educate allied emergency and human services personnel on working with people who carry a diagnosis

WET primarily serves public mental health employees and the organizations that educate or create academic and professional pathways into public mental health careers. We also regularly consider requests from other organization who serve mental health consumers or who want to increase their knowledge around mental illness or mental health careers.

Training and Technical Assistance

Community Training
WET has coordinated or conducted mental health and recovery oriented training for our local school districts, partner agencies, related county departments, and community organizations to improve knowledge of mental health, enhance customer service to people who carry a diagnosis, mental health  resources, and reduce mental health related stigma.

Resource Coordination and Education
WET created a central point of coordination to optimize utility of department and community resource listings that includes the Network of Care (NOC) for Behavioral Health and NOC for Service Members, Veterans, & Their Families; 211/Community Connect; RUHSBH Website; RUHSBH Guide to Services, and the UP2Riveside Website.  Riverside County’s NOC for Behavioral Health has been revised and update to become a very usual tool for staff, consumers, and families.  Averages of 19,763 hits were made to the website monthly, totaling 237,156 for the year (FY 13/14). An additional 16,417 individuals visited the NOC site for Service Members, Veterans & Their Families.

Learning Management System (LMS)
Registering for trainings has become easier and more efficient!  WET partnered with Riverside County’s central Human Resource Department to integrate our training schedule and registration into Riverside County’s existing electronic Learning Management System (LMS). The LMS allows employees to register for all their training – both mandated human resources trainings as well as their clinical development training- all in one location.

Clinical Licensure Advancement Support (CLAS) Program:  Offers Department sponsored supports to current, pre-licensed therapists working in RUHSBH who have achieved approximately 2,000 supervised hours toward board requirements for license examination.  Program includes on-line practice testing, weekly study groups, and centralized skill development workshops. Over 20 of your colleagues have become licensed using this program! 

Mental Health Career Pathways

Peer Employment Training and Internships
People with lived experience as a mental health consumer or a parent or family member have knowledge that benefits those we serve.  People who have lived experience who are at a stage in their recovery to help others can contact the following Department programs to learn how to volunteer, intern, or apply for Peer Support Specialist positions.

Mental Health Career Outreach and Education
Developing a career as a mental health services provider is both challenging and rewarding.  Many people are not aware of the breadth of options that are available and the related education or experience required to hold these occupations.  Mental Health service careers include: Peer and Family Support positions; Mental Health Case Manager; Mental Health Therapist; Psychologist; Psychiatrist – and more!   WET is available to:

  • Attend school Career Days or similar classroom presentations
  • Present to student groups (primary grades through higher education)
  • Support mental health curriculum in High School Health Academies

To learn more about mental health careers and some of the related educational opportunities, please visit the Southern Counties Regional Partnership:

Residency and Internship

Graduate, Intern, Field and Trainee (GIFT) Program
Riverside County has taken a committed, proactive vision in the development of our future workforce.  We place student practitioners thought our service system, in both clinical and administrative roles. Our student intern program has been consistently well evaluated by both students and their universities, yet we continue to expand our program to optimize the learning and preparation of students placed into our field sites. GIFT accepts student intern applications from:

  • MSW and MFT Graduate Programs
  • Bachelor programs in behavioral sciences
  • Alcohol and Drug Counselors specializing in Co-Occurring Disorders

GIFT has also coordinated externships for high school and college students seeking more education about mental health or developing a mental health service career. 

Veteran’s Services Liaison (VSL)
The VSL was conceived to educate mental health service providers on the unique needs and experience of our military veterans, as well as, to advocate for veterans’ mental health care services within vet service organizations.  For more information about the VSL, please read the “Veteran Services Liaison Plans & Actions” report.

For services specific to Veteran’s needs, additional information can be found at:   NOC for Service Members, Veterans, & Their Families;

Financial Incentives for Workforce Development

Incentives to Return to School: These programs are administered by RUHSBH WET or Riverside County Education Support Program

PASH and 20/20 Program:  This program supports current, RUHSBH employees that already hold a BA/BS degree and who want to become a Clinical Therapist within RUHSBH.  The program permits staff to receive full time pay while reducing their time at work up to 50% as they attend graduate school to earn a MSW or MFT degree.  Employees must have passed probation and worked for RUHSBH for at least 2 years.  RUHSBH PASH and 20/20 Program is outlined in DMH Policy 342.

Tuition Reimbursement Part A: This program allows permanent employees to receive tuition and textbook reimbursement while pursuing a certificate or a Bachelors or Masters degree.   This includes technical, administrative, management, and clinical degrees.

Tuition Reimbursement Part B: This program allows permanent employees to receive tuition and textbook reimbursement for completing individual coursework that will benefit their work performance or will meet the post degree educational requirements necessary to test for a license required for RCDMH employment.  It can also be a good opportunity to “try out” school for those who are interested in pursuing a degree but are unsure if school is right for them at this time.  This includes technical, administrative, management, and clinical coursework.

University Campus Partners Tuition Discount: Riverside County has partnered with local universities to encourage higher education.  Employees will receive a reduction in tuition costs while attending school.  Campus partners include: California Baptist University; University of La Verne; Brandman University; Ameritas College; and, University of Redlands. Contact Riverside County Educational Support Program for more information.

Loan Assumption Programs Designed for Retention of Public Servants: These programs are administered by California State or United States federal government

Mental Health Loan Assumption Program (MHLAP):  The MHLAP is a MHSA workforce retention strategy for the public mental health service system.   It is administered through the Health Professions Education Foundation.  Each county designates hard-to-fill or retain positions that qualify for eligibility. It is an annual, competitive application process.  Selected applicants can be awarded up to $10,000 in student debt reduction in exchange for a year of service in the public mental health service system.  Awardees can be selected up to six times.  MHLAP currently excludes staff in Adult Corrections and managed care contractors.  

Licensed Mental Health Services Provider Education Program (LMHSPEP): Loan repayment awards of up to $15,000 may be awarded in exchange for a two-year service obligation.  Recipients provide direct care in a publicly funded or public mental health facility, a non-profit mental health facility, or a mental health professions shortage area.  Eligible mental health providers include Licensed Clinical Social Workers, Associate Clinical Social Workers, Licensed Marriage and Family Therapists, Marriage and Family Therapy Interns, Licensed Psychologists, Registered Psychologists, Postdoctoral Psychological Assistants and Postdoctoral Psychological Trainees. 

National Health Service Corp Loan Forgiveness (NHSC):  The mission of the NHSC is to provide incentives for professionals to work in rural and underserved areas.  The NHSC determines this by looking at a provider area’s Health Professional Shortage Area (HPSA) score. The NHSC Loan Forgiveness Program is for licensed health providers (Licensed Clinicians, Psychologists, Psychiatrists, and Nurses).  The NHSC offers between $40,000 and $60,000 in exchange for a two-year service obligation.  RCDMH currently has 2 clinics that qualify for the NHSC Loan Forgiveness Program:  Blythe Clinic and the Indio Clinic (any program located at main campus). The Palm Springs FSP will soon be added to this list.

Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program (PSLFP): In 2007, Congress created the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program to encourage individuals to enter and continue to work full time in public service jobs. Under this program, you may qualify for forgiveness of the remaining balance due on your eligible federal student loans after you have made 120 payments on those loans under certain repayment plans while employed full time by certain public service employers. Since you must make 120 monthly payments on your eligible federal student loans after October 1, 2007 before you qualify for the loan forgiveness, the first cancellations of loan balances will not be granted until October 2017.

Additional Resources for Going Back to School
The Center for Reintegration

For more information on any of WET coordinated or sponsored programs, please contact:


2085 Rustin Avenue
Riverside, CA  92507
(951) 955-7108

Hours of Operation:  Monday - Thursday 8:00 a.m. - 5:30 p.m. & Friday 8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.


Field level help.