Senior News Reporter
“Our arrival on campus is not a coincidence and it’s part of a broader vision that President Treadwell has for Keene State to be engaged in the issues of importance to the region,” Principal Investigator George Tremblay said.
On July 1, 2019, the Behavioral Health Improvement Institute (BHII) moved from Antioch University to Keene State College. BHII is now housed on the second floor of the Carroll House at Keene State College.
The Institute provides consultation type services to clinical, psychological and behavioral health services. The Institute focuses much of their research on child development and children’s behavioral health.
“Keene State was very interested in hosting us as part of a broader effort to be connected to the regional community. One of Keene State’s traditional areas of strength is to be interested in child development and a lot of our work is in children’s behavioral health,” Tremblay said.
As one of three Principal Investigators for BHII, Tremblay finds projects, secures funding and supports the team in their research.
“We help people in the community improve behavioral health, mental health and substance abuse practice and outcomes. Our work is really external and in the community; it’s a community engagement arm of Keene State,” Director of BHII James Fauth said.
Fauth is a doctoral-level counseling psychologist and has taught at Antioch for over 15 years. During his last year at Antioch, Fauth moved from teaching to focusing entirely on research and project work.
The BHII employs three graduate students from Antioch. Raynalde Schagen is an advanced research assistant with the Institute who reviews other student work and assists with program evaluation.
Currently, Schagen and Tremblay are evaluating Youth Leadership Through Development, a program being implemented in schools in northern New Hampshire.
“It gets students involved in planning outdoor adventures and conferences and having a lot of leadership responsibilities,” Schagen said. “It gives kids a sense of empowerment and so I really love working on that program.”
“There’s a lot of history here of trying to improve the wellbeing of children here at Keene State,” Tremblay said.
Schagen is pursuing a doctorate in clinical psychology and hopes to become a therapist or work in psychological testing.
“I think if I hadn’t done this, I would have a much harder time with my research papers,” Schagen said. “Some projects are more of a literature review and that really taught me a lot about how to do research.”
The BHII hopes to employ a few Keene State students to help with their research and projects.
“Our plan is to make available some assistantships for Keene State students. Even though we’re not attached to any academic departments, the work we do is relevant to a few different departments here,” Fauth said.
The Institute works on different projects throughout New Hampshire. Currently, BHII is evaluating the fidelity of the System of Care. The System of Care is a system of therapeutic services throughout the state of New Hampshire. The Institute ensures that behavioral health services in New Hampshire are offered as advertised and helps find ways for these services to improve.
“At Keene State, one part of their mission is really about behavioral health and engaging with the community, so we help embody that part of the mission,” Fauth said.
Kelly Regan can be contacted at