Clinical Team launches professional development and self-care series

August 7, 2019

The clinicians at Latham Centers embody generosity through their interactions with their students, staff across departments, as well as the families we serve. They are generous with their time, patience, heart, empathy, compassion, and knowledge. Director of Social Services Brynn Cooper said her clinical staff has been sharing their knowledge with colleagues through three newly launched initiatives: a professional development seminar series, a “Self-Care Monday” series, and an internal “Wellness Wednesday” mental health newsletter.

Professional Development Series: Our Social Services team began this monthly workshop in June to provide more information to our staff about the clinical diagnoses and needs of our diverse student body. Each session offers the opportunity for staff across components to come together to learn and brainstorm new ideas about how to work with students who display the clinical need being discussed.

The seminar series includes topics such as trauma; anxiety disorders; mood disorders; OCD and related disorders; autism spectrum disorder; Prader-Willi syndrome; and more. The response so far has been overwhelmingly positive. One new staff member said she has worked in the education field for many years and has never had the opportunity to learn from seminars like this. Presentations include the definition of diagnosis; details about the specific diagnosis or clinical challenge; and how all of that information can be applied to a case. Participants do activities together that mimic clinical activities used with the students, talk in small groups about how the information is reflected in students we serve, and share insights and experiences.

Self-Care Mondays: Also beginning in June, our new Lead Clinician, Samantha Cronin, began offering “Self-Care Mondays” once a month which includes a self-care activity such as yoga and stretching. The invitation to staff read, “Take a moment out of your day and treat yourself with a self-care yoga class! Latham staff members Sam Cronin and Patricia Thomas, both certified yoga teachers, will be offering the class.”

Wellness Wednesdays: Sam has also created a beautiful Clinical Newsletter that is published one Wednesday per month and shared with staff. The Wellness Wednesday Mental Health Staff Newsletter focuses on the topic being discussed in that month’s Professional Development Seminar. The Clinical Newsletter includes local mental health events, helpful hints, tips, facts, and research focused on the topic of the month, and promotes self-care in the workplace.

All of us at Latham Centers truly appreciate our Clinical Team!