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Workforce Development/Missouri Job Center News Releases

Posted on: March 16, 2022

Workforce Vibe Talks Mental Health at the College Level

March 16, 2022
Media Contact: Katherine Trombetta
417-880-6306 or
[email protected]

Workforce Vibe Talks Mental Health at the College Level

The City’s Department of Workforce Development has released it’s latest episode of Workforce Vibe, taking on the issue of mental health among college students as they prepare to enter their chosen career field. Sally Payne, Workforce Development Director for the City of Springfield, talked with Dr. Joan Barrett and Dean Joyce Bateman from Ozarks Technical Community College about how they promote mental wellness in students and staff.

“OTC is an exceptional example of how colleges and universities have cared for their students and staff from the moment the pandemic began up to the present,” said Sally Payne, Springfield’s Director of Workforce Development. “By encouraging students to seek help when they felt overwhelmed by the pandemic, OTC created a environment of caring,” she added.

“During 2020, our instructors has to adjust teaching plans to become fully virtual like every other higher education institution,” said Dr. Barrett. “They did a marvelous job in adjusting but we as soon realized we needed to be checking on the well being of our students, so we instituted a calling system where faculty and staff called each student to see how they were doing,” Dr. Barrett added.

“We felt the calls were so beneficial that we continued to check up on our students until we were able to have seated classes again,” said Dean Bateman. “Once seated classes began administrative staff would stand inside the front doors of classroom buildings and greet each student as they arrived for class. If a student looked upset we took the time to find out why and that also made a huge difference in promoting mental wellness,” Bateman said.

To listen to the full conversation you can access Workforce Vibe on most major podcast platforms including Apple iTunes and Spotify. You may also listen to all Workforce Vibe episodes on under the podcasts section.

 For media requests, contact Katherine Trombetta at 417-880-6306 or [email protected].




The Missouri Job Center is an equal opportunity employer/program. Auxiliary aids and services available to individuals with disabilities. MO TTY users may call 800-735-2966 or contact MO Relay at 711.


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