Select Page

Save the Date for the Adolescent Health Symposium

Feb. 15-16, 2024

Virtual Conference

This annual gathering of educators, youth workers, educational administrators, community leaders, and health and human service professionals advances key topics in the areas of health education and adolescent wellness. We are honored to have four renowned keynote presenters with diverse perspectives, as well as dedicated breakout session facilitators presenting a diverse assortment of topics in alignment with our three symposium tracks:

  1. Risk Factors
  2. Health Promotion and Protective Factors
  3. Emerging Health Issues

Although the delivery format has evolved over time, the foundational goals remain the same. Please select the breakout sessions that best meet your personal and professional needs. You do not have to remain solely in one breakout session track throughout the Symposium. Engage in active learning and prepare to return to your organization with new and exciting insights and strategies for working with today’s youth.

Opening Keynote Presenter: Kathleen Ethier, PhD

Dr. Ethier will address “Using Key Findings from the National Youth Risk Behavior Survey (YRBS) for the Advancement of Healthier Youth in the U.S.: A Call to the Nation.”

Dr. Kathleen Ethier is a social psychologist and the Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)’s Division of Adolescent and School Health in the National Center for HIV, Viral Hepatitis, STD, and TB Prevention.

She has served as a leader at CDC in adolescent health as well as other capacities since 1999. Prior to joining CDC, Dr. Ethier spent six years on the research faculty at Yale University studying HIV, STDs, and unplanned pregnancy prevention among women and adolescents. Her research has primarily focused on psychosocial, behavioral, and environmental factors related to adolescent mental and physical health. Dr. Ethier earned her PhD in social psychology from the Graduate Center of the City University of New York.


Lunchtime Keynote Co-Presenter: Angela Flickinger

Angela Flickinger and Danette Hopke will address “Connecting with Community Partners for Collective Action Addressing Youth Mental Health.”

Angela Flickinger is the Outreach Program Manager for Healthy Eating and Active Living within the Institute of Health and Well-being with UW-Madison, Division of Extension. Prior to this role, Flickinger was a Professor in the Department of Family Development and a Health and Well-being Educator in Rock County.

Flickinger has previously held positions working for WIC (Women, Infants, and Children) in North Carolina and AHEC (Wisconsin Area Health Education Center). Additionally, Flickinger is the StrongBodies (AKA StrongWomen) Ambassador for Wisconsin. Her work in Wisconsin has been to intentionally create systems, environments, and policies that improve and support individual, family and community health.

Flickinger’s education, research, and programming efforts are in the areas of health, nutrition, policy, and leadership development. Some of her community efforts include programming in healthy communities, school health initiatives, health equity, coalition capacity building, leadership development, and chronic disease prevention and management.

Flickinger is a Registered Dietitian, Certified Personal Trainer, holds a bachelor’s degree in Nutrition and Dietetics and a master’s degree in Public Health.

Lunchtime Keynote Co-Presenter: Danette Hopke

Danette Hopke is the state Behavioral Health Outreach Program Manager for the Health & Well-Being Institute in the UW-Madison Division of Extension. In this role Hopke supports all Behavioral Health affiliated educators across the state and builds partnerships both within and outside the University to advance the work in this program area. The Behavioral Health program area strives to support comprehensive well-being for individuals, families, and communities with an emphasis on health equity.

Prior to this role, Hopke was a Behavioral Health county-based educator for Extension in Washburn County. In addition, she has worked in rural healthcare and educational settings and before coming to Extension was an Educational Consultant for the Healthy, Safe, Respectful Schools program area at CESA 11. She has a bachelor’s degree in nursing with experience across the lifespan including the behavioral health field and a Master’s degree in Education with a School Counseling emphasis. Hopke is passionate about incorporating youth voice into policy, systems, and environmental change efforts and increasing capacity for individuals, coalitions and communities to increase impact and sustainable change.

Friday Keynote Presenter: Sarah Kopplin

Sarah Kopplin will address “Civic Learning: Planting the seeds for a healthy democracy and cultivating community identities for our kids.”

Sarah Kopplin teaches seventh grade social studies at Shorewood Intermediate School in Shorewood, Wisconsin. She has been a K-12 educator in public schools for 21 years and holds a bachelor’s degree in history from the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse and a master’s in secondary social studies education from the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities. She currently serves as President of the Wisconsin Council for the Social Studies, a Wisconsin CESA 1 Civics Fellow, and a 2023 Wisconsin Teacher of the Year.

Kopplin provides professional development opportunities to K-12 educators in the areas of the social studies, civic engagement, authentic learning, and research surrounding effective teaching strategies for middle school students. She is passionate about providing her students with authentic learning opportunities to promote civic engagement.

The Symposium is offered in cooperation with the UW-La Crosse Department of Public Health and Community Health Education, UW-La Crosse Graduate & Extended Learning and the UW Oshkosh Division of Online and Continuing Education.

Special thanks to the Wisconsin Association for Middle-Level Education (WAMLE) for their support and assistance advertising the Symposium.

For more information, contact or call (608) 785-6500.