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Healing The Heartland: Rural Mental Health Symposium

September 10, 2019


Mental health issues are impacting our agricultural and rural communities each and every day. Increased understanding of the impact, resources and ways to overcome this impact is needed.   Together, we must seek to be better informed and discover solutions to support our farm families and rural communities. We can do more to engage and advocate to restore health and hope in the Heartland.

The goal for this unique program is to increase awareness of the importance of addressing mental health issues, understand the impact of stress factors and identify ways to support at risk individuals.  Our hope is to elevate the importance of the need for easily accessible resources to support agricultural and rural communities. 

This symposium is being planned and coordinated by ALP Class 18 members:  Meggie Foster, CountryMark; Jackie Barber, Elanco; Somula Schwoeppe, Feeding America and Schwoeppe Dairy; Sarah Wagler, Nutrient Management Partners; Jeff Cummins, ISDA and Kyle Shipman, Indiana Board of Animal Health in coordination with AgrIInstitute.

Cost to register for the Symposium is $35/person. Please note that space is limited so early registration is recommended. Registration and more details are available at www.healingtheheartland.org

Thank you to the generous support of our sponsors  including the Indiana State Fair as the event host and premier sponsor.

Premier Sponsors include:    Indiana Soybean Alliance, Farm Credit Mid-America and Rural 1st, POET, and Purdue Extension

Partner Sponsors include:  Indiana State Department of Agriculture, Agribusiness Council of Indiana, and Co-Alliance. 

Healing the Heartland: Rural Mental Health Symposium


8 a.m.              Registration and Trade Show Open

9 a.m.              Welcome and Opening Remarks

  • Mental Health in Indiana: The Rural Landscape
  • Agriculture Stakeholders: Challenges, Retrospect and Opportunity
  • Healing, Hope and Help: Indiana Farmers Tell Their Story

Help for Farmers in the Heartland – Dr. Michael Rosmann

Michael Rosmann is a farmer and psychologist from Harlan, Iowa. He obtained his BA in psychology from the University of Colorado and his MS and PhD degrees in clinical psychology from the University of Utah.  His professional work has contributed to the understanding of why people farm, their unique behavioral health issues, and why suicide is unusually common among farmers.  He writes a weekly column, “Farm and Ranch Life,” which is syndicated in 31 agricultural and rural newspapers; he has written an award-winning book, Excellent Joy: Fishing, Farming, Hunting, and Psychology.  He is Adjunct Professor in the Department of Occupational and Environmental Health at the University of Iowa.   

12 :00 p.m.                  Lunch & Discussion Groups

  • Support, Survive and Thrive: 
    Building Back Resiliency in Our Rural Communities
    Multiple presentations providing evidence based support and resources
  • Closing Thoughts – Dr. Bret Marsh, Indiana State Veterinarian      
4 p.m.                          Trade Show Closes


September 10, 2019
Event Category:


Indiana State Fairgrounds, Farm Bureau Bldg.
1202 East 38th Street
Indianapolis, IN 46205 United States


IN Agricultural Leadership Program Class 18 Team


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