ABOUT WISE University

W.I.S.E. University 

Workforce Integration Support & Education

What is WISE U?

Cal Voices' WISE University is a FREE, interactive peer training course, offered quarterly. Hosted both online (16 days), and in-person (11 days), WISE U is designed to aid in the development of peer support services and increase the peer workforce within substance-use and mental health service settings.


The primary goal is to assist WISE U participants with placement into a  full-time or part-time paid or volunteer peer position in the public mental health field. 


WISE U was created by Peers. Taught by Peers. For Peers. We are peer employment experts. 



Workforce Integration Support & Education


WISE, or (Workforce Integration Support and Education), is a program of Cal Voices (a continuation of NorCal MHA) funded by the Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development (OSHPD) with dollars from the Mental Health Service Act or MHSA. Our goal is simple: to help employers in California’s public mental health system recruit and retain consumer and family member staff through genuine workforce integration.


We understand the constraints and issues you’re facing because we’ve been there. In fact, we are there. Over 90% of our staff identify as consumers and/or family members, including our entire Executive Leadership team and all of our program managers. Just like you, we strive to put the MHSA’s vision and values into practice by promoting and advancing peer employment. We’ve learned that successful incorporation of consumers and family members into existing workplaces requires the convergence of many factors, which include:

  • A recovery-oriented work culture

  • Dedicated and influential workplace leaders

  • Supportive managers and supervisors

  • Ongoing training, coaching, and peer mentoring

  • Adequate oversight, evaluation, and feedback for peers

  • Clearly-defined core competencies and peer roles

  • Genuine opportunities for career advancement

  • Collaborative working relationships

  • Continuity and growth of peer programs

  • Opportunities for peers to interact and learn together

  • Flexible workplace policies and procedures


Employers have achieved varying levels of progress in each of these areas. We can all use assistance with reinforcing our strengths and mitigating our weaknesses. Just as peers need support from one another to encourage growth and continual improvement, our employer partners also benefit from sharing their successes and challenges with one another in a non-judgmental environment. We are passionate about providing these services and helping our partner agencies realize their specific organizational objectives.

Our Mission
To help employers in California's public health system recruit and retain consumer and family members staff through genuine workforce integration.