Newsletter Article

June 27, 2023

Specialized Workforce Programs Help Counties Fill Gaps, Retain Staff

Key Staff: Lucero Robles, LCSW, Director of Quality Assurance 

Counties can now choose from a full set of CalMHSA workforce solutions to address the range of behavioral health staffing needs that persist throughout the state — including a new master’s degree program curated specifically for county behavioral health departments and a virtual clinical supervision program for counties with supervision shortages.  

Master’s in Clinical Mental Health: Deepen Staff Expertise, Commitment  

Support staff development, grow expertise within your workforce, and increase long-term staff retention with Project Cultivate, a new Master’s-level degree program available through CalMHSA’s partnership with Palo Alto University. Counties cover tuition and fees for a Master of Arts in Clinical Mental Health Counseling degree specifically for staff of their choosing, with the understanding that their staff will accept a service commitment with the county for a designated length of time.   

 Palo Alto University offers flexibility scheduling to accommodate full-time staff with three classes per quarter, offered in the evenings; an interactive, online synchronous classroom; and two in-person, on-campus intensives.   

 Counties should send CalMHSA names of staff they identify as prospective students by July 14. CalMHSA will meet with the identified staff and refer them to Palo Alto University to begin their application, due July 30 for the fall 2023 term.  

Remote Supervision    

CalMHSA has partnered with Motivo Health on this new program, which provides virtual clinical supervision through a HIPAA-compliant platform to fill a gap for counties that have pre-licensed staff but do not have access to enough clinical supervisors:   

  • Counties purchase remote individual supervision hours for pre-licensed staff   
  • All supervisors in the program will complete a training to orient them to the Medi-Cal core client populations within county behavioral health.    
  • Counties also have will have the option to purchase Triad supervision (two associates, one supervisor) or group supervision (three to eight associates, one supervisor)    

  Questions about these and other workforce programs can be directed to