Preparing Counselors for Montana's Rural Schools and Communities

"It has been a wonderful opportunity to see how something so important could get started and thrive in a rural town." - Damon, Counseling Intern, Class of 2021

Working to improve the preparation, retention, and overall numbers and effectiveness of mental health professionals for rural Montana. 

The RMHP3 is a cohort model that prepares graduate counseling students to participate and serve as counselors in rural communities. The graduate students are provided with preparation, a professional learning environment, and supervision to create sustainable and supportive mental health services in rural Montana. 


  • Increase the number of counselors in rural schools and communities from 3.7 per year to 10
  • Create a long-term sustainable model for best practice in preparation of rural mental health services in Montana and beyond. 
  • Foster safety and support in rural schools and communities for all community members. 

"I'm learning a lot working in a smaller community. The roles and boundaries of a counselor within a small community are different than what I have experienced in larger communities.  Staff, teachers, and administrators in rural schools may often wear multiple hats and have to adapt to evolving situations and the needs of students on a daily basis. I continue to learn new things every day in Ennis, and I am grateful to be at such a welcoming and supportive school." - Heidi, Counseling Intern, Class of 2021

Becoming Involved and More Information

For additional information, please contact one of our Lead Principal Investigators listed below 

RMHP3 Head Principal Investigators:


Anna Elliott

Assistant Professor
Montana State University

     Herrick Hall 210E, Bozeman, MT 59717-3540
   [email protected]

Kirsten Murray

University of Montana

    ED 337, 32 Campus Dr MS 6356, Missoula MT, 59812
   [email protected]