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University of Central Missouri
Administration 302
Warrensburg, MO 64093
Phone: 660-543-4640
Fax: 660-543-4943


UCM Program Looks at ‘The Many Faces of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder’

Contact: Jeff Murphy
WARRENSBURG, MO (March 4, 2015) – A mental health condition, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)  affects a wide range of people – from military veterans who have suffered the scars of war to individuals  who are victims of assault to those affected by natural disaster and the loss of loved ones. To help people understand the importance of PTSD, the University of Central Missouri will host the program, “The Many Faces of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder,” at 3 p.m. Thursday, April 2 in Elliott Student Union 237A-B.

UCM’s Office of Military and Veteran Services is presenting this free program, which is open to faculty, staff, students and the general public. The featured speaker will be David F. Rieb, Psy.D., a geriatric neuropsychologist at Colmery O’Neil VA Medical Center in Topeka, Kan.

Rieb will help those in attendance to better understand the nature of traumatic experiences, factors contributing to PTSD, the diagnosis of PTSD, and the medical and mental health treatments available. A question and answer session follows his formal presentation, and those in attendance are invited to a reception at 4:30 p.m.

Additionally, Michael Focke, a representative of The Vet Center in Kansas City, will provide an information table at the event. He will offer materials from the Kansas City VA Hospital to help educate veterans on available mental health and general health care treatment options. He also will help register individuals for VA health care.  

Delilah Nichols, coordinator of the UCM Military and Veteran Services, said people attending the event will gain an understanding of why some individuals suffer from PTSD following a traumatic event and why others do not. They will learn about “the support, encouragement and patience it takes from care providers and friends” to aid individuals who are suffering from PTSD.

Nichols has worked on campus to provide resources for military and veteran students, including help for those who suffer from PTSD. Demonstrating that anyone’s life can be touched by this condition, she points to a quote from Army Special Operations Soldier Tyler Grey, whose Delta Force unit is featured in the film “That Which I Love Destroys Me.” He articulates humans’ vulnerability to PTSD, noting, “Take anyone in the world…no one can hold out forever. Take enough things to happen to a person at one time – enough negative things – and anyone, and everyone, can be broken.”

The program at UCM will offer insight into the value of friends, family and professional resources to help individuals to recover from PTSD. They need to know they are not alone and there is hope, Nichols said.

“The first step in seeking help is the hardest – making that counseling appointment and sharing their story,” she added.  “Knowing that they are speaking to an ‘unbiased’ individual lifts an incredible weight off their shoulders. When the person struggling with PTSD talks to a trusted friend and care provider and utilizes the resources and therapy exercise provided, the healing process begins.”

For more information about “The Many Faces of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder,” contact Nichols at 660-543-8977.