A team of faculty and staff led by William Ernst, Psy.D. and Meredith Kneavel, Ph.D., was selected as a winner of Phase One of the Educational Programs Challenge, a component of the Mind Matters Challenge of the National Collegiate Athletic Association and the Department of Defense.
The team’s proposal, titled “The Chestnut Hill College Peer Concussion Education Program,” was developed by Dr. Ernst, assistant professor, Dr. Kneavel, chair of the undergraduate psychology department, Erin Fidler head athletic trainer, Nikki Lockhart, associate athletic director for academic success and community engagement, Lynn Tubman, director of athletics, Lynn Ortale, Ph.D., vice president for student life, Bethanie Paddock a doctoral student and Lynn Brandsma, Ph.D., associate professor of psychology.
The goal of the Mind Matters/Educational Programs Challenge is to improve concussion awareness education programs delivered to collegiate student-athletes, service members and their influencers so that all clearly understand a concussion is a serious medical condition requiring appropriate treatment. The Mind Matters Challenge focuses on two initiatives: first, a research challenge designed to identify key factors and methodologies to change the culture and behavior of college student athletes and second, an educational program challenge meant to improve the effectiveness of concussion awareness programs delivered to student-athletes.
The team will receive a $25,000 prize for their success in Phase One. They also will receive an additional $75,000 production budget to create a program demonstration for Phase Two. Phase one winners are selected based on the assessment of a joint NCAA-DOD review panel.
According to Ernst, the CHC program demonstration will include an online manual with videos, power point presentations and more. “We are very excited to develop this innovative program, which may help change the culture, attitudes and behaviors about concussion in young adults,” he says.