The Washington State Behavioral Health Workforce Development Initiative (WDI) is designed to increase the number and diversity of well-trained clinicians committed to working in the state’s community-based behavioral health agencies. The initiative provides conditional grants for students in graduate-level programs in mental health, social work, and marriage and family therapy in exchange for serving in WDI-approved community behavioral health agencies or tribal health centers.
How your agency can participate
Please follow these steps to participate in the WDI initiative.
- Confirm your agency is on the WDI-approved behavioral health agency list.
- Create field-education opportunities for UW MSW WDI-grant recipients by contacting your School of Social Work field faculty, or the UW WDI administrator, Sofie Aaron.
- Encourage your employees to apply to the UW School of Social Work MSW program and to simultaneously apply for a WDI conditional grant as a professional development opportunity.
- Hire a current UW MSW student who has been approved for a WDI conditional grant.
How your agency can qualify as a WDI-approved site
If your agency is not on the WDI-approved behavioral health agency list, you may qualify if the following WDI-defined criteria are met. Your agency:
- Employs master’s-level clinical mental health staff from at least one of the following disciplines: mental health counseling, social work, marriage and family therapy
- Provides behavioral health services reimbursed by Medicaid.
- Provides services in a community setting and not an institutional setting such as a hospital or VA medical center.
- Provide at least the following three behavioral health services:
- Individual outpatient mental health treatment
- Outpatient substance-use disorder level I or level II treatment
- Rehabilitative case management
- Does not receive additional, non-Medicaid government funding for reimbursement of behavioral health services, such as funds from a hospital system.