View All Available Training Classes

NW PA Counties graphicThe Northwest Pennsylvania (NW PA) Veteran Suicide Prevention Program operates on a three-pronged approach involving healthcare providers, community organizations, and Veterans and their families. Because of this focus, we’re providing information about our newly expanded menu of training classes. We encourage you to learn about these training opportunities and share with your personal and professional networks throughout the region. While our primary focus is the 15 countries of NW PA, we may be able to accommodate those outside the region on a space-available basis. Please contact us with any questions or to schedule a training session for your business, community organization, or professional association. A printable pdf of the training course list is available to download and share.

NW PA Veteran Suicide Prevention Live Facilitated Trainings (In-Person or Virtual)

The trainings listed below are presented by the program implementation team and/or behavioral health clinicians from UPMC Western Behavioral Health at Safe Harbor (Erie County). The trainings can be provided in-person or virtually to meet the needs of the audience.

QPR (Question. Persuade. Refer) Gatekeeper Training for Suicide Prevention

Community Organizations(2 hours) QPR is an evidence-based program in which individuals are educated about the warning signs of a suicide crisis then taught how to respond, how to offer hope, and how to get help.

  • Recall facts about suicide and suicide prevention. ​
  • Identify warning signs of suicide. ​
  • Demonstrate how to ask someone directly about their desire or intent regarding suicide. ​
  • Demonstrate verbal and nonverbal skills used to persuade someone who is having thoughts of suicide to seek and accept help. ​
  • Identify local resources available to help someone who is having thoughts of suicide. ​
  • Describe how to get help for someone having thoughts of suicide.

Applied Suicide Interventional Skills Training (ASIST) *In-Person Only

group(15 hours) ASIST is a two-day, highly participatory workshop in which participants learn to use a suicide intervention model to identify individuals with thoughts of suicide, seek a shared understanding of reasons for dying and living, develop a safety plan based upon a review of risk, and learn how to provide active follow-up.

  • Recognize that caregivers and persons at risk are affected by personal and societal attitudes about suicide.
  • Discuss suicide in a direct manner with someone at risk.
  • Identify risk alerts and develop related safety plans.
  • Demonstrate the skills required to intervene with a person at risk of suicide.
  • List the types of resources available to a person at risk, including themselves.
  • Make a commitment to improving community resources.
  • Recognize that suicide prevention is broader than suicide first-aid and includes life promotion and self-care for caregivers.

Counseling on Access to Lethal Means (CALM)

VTCs(1 hour) CALM is designed for professionals who work with people at risk for suicide to learn how to help individuals reduce access to lethal means, such as firearms and medication, during a crisis.

  • Identify people who could benefit from lethal means counseling.
  • Ask about access to lethal methods.
  • Work with the individual at risk and their families to reduce access to lethal means.

Introduction to Military Culture

older veterans in uniform(1 hour) This course will educate participants about the nuances of military service and experiences of service members, so that they may better understand, support, and develop programs and services for military and Veteran communities.

  • Describe how departments, branches, and rank hierarchies are organized within the U.S military​.
  • Identify the six elements of the military’s closed system​.
  • Define and discuss the risks associated with military service​.
  • Identify the top transitional challenges as service members return to civilian life​.
  • Identify the top skills and attributes strengthened by military service.

Overview of Moral Injury (MI)

lunch at the legion(1 hour) This course will educate participants about moral injury, its prevalence among servicemembers, common precipitating events, health outcomes, and treatment options.

  • Define moral injury (MI) and how it differs from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)​.
  • Discuss the 2 types, causes and symptoms of moral injury​.
  • Discuss the connection between military culture and moral injury​.
  • Identify best practices for assessment and treatment of MI.

An Epidemic in our Ranks: Military Sexual Trauma (MST)

women talking(1 hour) This course will educate participants about military sexual trauma, its prevalence among servicemembers, common health outcomes, treatment options, and available resources.

  • Define military sexual trauma (MST) and its prevalence in the military​.
  • Discuss the connection between military culture and MST​.
  • Identify common outcomes of MST and treatment options available for Veteran survivors​.
  • Discuss institutional betrayal, military justice, and policy reform efforts related to MST.

Looking to Get Involved?

friends standing togetherWhether you identify as a healthcare provider, community organization, or Veteran, there are several opportunities through the NW PA Veteran Suicide Prevention Program and PERU to connect to resources, participate in educational training, and promote harm reduction strategies. We are actively recruiting healthcare and community partners to work with us in meeting our goals and objectives. To learn more, visit the program website at

Need Help? Know Someone Who Does? Contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (1-800-273-8255) or use the online Lifeline Crisis Chat. Both are free and confidential. You’ll be connected to a skilled, trained counselor in your area.

University of Pittsburgh PERU logo