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Weekend A:


Thursday, June 16, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

16-111a: Attachment and Intimate Partner Violence

Jean Clarke-Mitchell, M.S.W. , L.I.C.S.W.

Domestic violence/intimate partner violence (DV/IPV) remains a complex family societal problem. It is often described as the use of power and control through physical, psychological, sexual, economical and stalking behaviors towards a current or former partner. Many approaches has been utilized to better understand why this phenomenon occurs and continues to thrive among intimates. This course will examine the intersections between intimate partner violence and attachment. People often wonder "why women stay in domestic violence relationships" and are often concerned about the safety issues without consideration of the attachment aspects. Being in a relationship that is unhealthy with attachments that are deeply psychological prevents some from recognizing the reality of the danger they live with. Some abused partners may believe it is better to stay because they become aware of the cycle of the violence and often know it will pass eventually. Power and control require a certain attachment style as a dynamic of the relationship to be successful. Assessment and treatment strategies will be discussed as part of the intervention strategies, which have been effective in addressing the issue of IPV disclosed in many clinical settings. Participants will participate in activities that will increase their awareness, ability, and confidence to assess, treat or make referrals to clients.

Learning Objectives and References

Faculty: Jean Clarke-Mitchell, M.S.W., L.I.C.S.W., is
Clinical Director, Elizabeth Freeman Center, Inc. Jean is a practicing psychotherapist at the Elizabeth Freeman Center, Brien Center for Mental Health, and has a small private practice. Her work at the Elizabeth Freeman Center is centered on domestic and sexual violence services. She holds a MSW and is PhD/ABD at Smith College. She lives and works in the Berkshires of Western Massachusetts.

16-112a:What Do We Mean By Use of Self?: Comparative Psychodynamic Perspective on the Clinical Utility of Therapists' Self Experience

Stacey Novack, Psy.D.

This seminar will explore the question of how a therapist "uses one's self" in psychotherapy from three contemporary psychodynamic perspectives: 1) contemporary Kleinian theories of projective identification, 2) self-psychological conceptions of empathy, and 3) relational ideas about the role of the subjectivity of the therapist. Participants will read key papers representing each theoretical perspective and using their own clinical examples, will explore, through in-class discussion of case material, the clinical implications of each of these perspectives.

Learning Objectives and References

Faculty: Stacey Novack, Psy.D. is a Clinical Psychologist in practice in Northampton, MA. She is adjunct faculty at the Smith College School for Social Work, where she teaches a course on comparative psychodynamic theories. Dr. Novack is also a psychoanalytic candidate at the Massachusetts Institute of Psychoanalysis (MIP).

16-113a: Emerging Drug Use Trends and Emerging Treatments for Addictive Disorders

Kurt White, M.S.W.

It's rough out there! Drug overdose deaths seem to be everywhere in the news - from people in small town Vermont communities to accomplished movie stars. To complicate matters, the landscape of drug use is changing: prescription drug abuse, referring to the use of prescription opioids such as Oxycontin, Percoset, etc. is being called an epidemic - and its epicenter is Northern New England. More recently, illicit opioids have given way to a resurgence in heroin, including in unexpected places and populations - fueled in part by incredibly potent supply and efficient supply chains. New designer drugs, such as the so-called "bath salts" have also emerged along with designer drugs such as synthetic cannabinoids. More familiar drugs, like cannabis, have become drastically more potent, and more young people are engaging in use, with often dangerous consequences. In this workshop, we will explore these and other troubling trends, along with effective approaches for addressing substance use disorders. Effective but often misunderstood pharmacological treatments such as Suboxone and methadone will be explored at length. Along the way, we will discuss the nature of addictive illness, new categories in DSM-5, and the new 3rd edition of the ASAM Placement Criteria.

Learning Objectives and References

Faculty: Kurt White, L.I.C.S.W., L.A.D.C., C.G.P. is the Director of Ambulatory Services at the Brattleboro Retreat in Brattleboro, VT, and is a social worker and drug and alcohol counselor by trade and training. He presently currently serves as president of the Vermont Association of Addiction Treatment Professionals (VAATP), which represents addiction treatment agencies in Vermont. Kurt is adjunct assistant professor at Smith College School for Social Work, where he teaches Group Theory and Practice. He is also adjunct faculty at Antioch New England Graduate School, where teaches in the Applied Psychology program.


16-114a: Tools for Listening and Talking across the Spaces Between Us Course Closed

Kerrita Mayfield, Ph.D.

It can be complicated to communicate with our clients across and within our various identities. Without shared meaning - or at least clearer comprehension of our intersecting worlds - reaching across various divides toward shared worlds feels impossible. This workshop offers 2 real-world tools that we will we practice and assess for our professional (and hopefully personal) use. Created from current research and utilized successfully in other human service fields like student mentoring, social justice education, and teacher training, these tools will help provide us with the opportunity to build stronger power-aware relationships that address moving through difficult (mis)understandings toward stronger self-aware conversations. These tools can be modified to fit each practitioners' life experiences, personal perspectives, and desired interaction or relationship goals. These reflexive methods can also be taught to others as they develop their own critical practices.

Learning Objectives & References Coming Soon!

Faculty: Kerrita K. Mayfield, Ph.D. is a proud Eph (Williams College) also with degrees from the University of Wyoming and UMass Amherst in biology, studio arts, women studies, science and technology education, and curriculum and instruction. Fond of saying that she has a research spider web instead of a simple line, her work coheres with a focus on how educators and learners co-create various emancipatory content-based curricula. This mixed methods and multi-modal research has been presented and published in national and international conferences and journals. Kerrita has taught all over the country at institutions like Vassar and UMAss Amherst's Social Justice Education program, and 20 years ago she helped create a Math Science and Technology Magnet School in Washington state, whose science, art and cultural curriculum she helped design. Kerrita is a life-long inquirer and educator.



Friday, June 17, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

16-121a: Treating Mood & Anxiety Disorders Related To Pregnancy or Postpartum

Mara Acel-Green, M.S.W., L.I.C.S.W.

Often a period that is described as bliss by outsiders, the period during pregnancy and postpartum are frequently experienced as a blur for those going through it. This workshop will explore perinatal mood and anxiety disorders; we will also explore other emotional complications of pregnancy and the postpartum period. Emotional complications are the most common complication of pregnancy and often go unreported, undiagnosed, and untreated. In this workshop we will explore the prevalence of these complications, the challenges to accessing appropriate care, and treatment approaches. We will spend the afternoon exploring the use of CBT for perinatal mood and anxiety disorders. The workshop format includes case presentations, resource identification, and screening tools.

Learning Objectives and References

Faculty: Mara Acel-Green, M.S.W., L.I.C.S.W., is a psychotherapist in Watertown, MA and the owner of Strong Roots Counseling; Mara has a specialty in pregnancy and postpartum mood and anxiety and related disorders. Mara was graduated from Smith School for Social Work and has a certificate in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy from Boston University. In addition to her private practice and adjunct faculty position at Northeastern University, she is the past President of the Board of Directors of Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies of Massachusetts. Mara's written work can be see on Huffington Post as well as on her website at or


16-122a: Acquaintance Sexual Assault of Adolescents and Young Adults: Beneath the Tip of the Iceberg

Cindy Solin M.S.W. , L.I.C.S.W.

Girls between the ages of 15-24 have the highest rates of sexual victimization of any population group. They are most at risk from being sexually assaulted by peers, who they know socially or casually. There are clear reasons for this. Elements of adolescent psychology and female psychology make girls vulnerable to assault. Boys are emboldened by the cultural messages they receive about male sexual entitlement and sexual aggression with impunity. Adolescent social dynamics replicate adult gender power disparities. This population frequently socializes with alcohol recklessly, which escalates male aggressiveness and female passivity. Girls are typically naive about the sexual assault risk embedded in normal socializing; boys frequently have an underdeveloped capacity for empathy.

Treatment with this population is challenging. Acquaintance sexual assault is often not disclosed, which then precludes, or at a minimum, delays treatment. Female adolescents present a complex clinical picture: at this stage of life their relational needs conflict with and often trump their need for personal safety. Their priorities are fueled by compelling developmental tasks: separation from parents and the primacy of intimate social and sexual relationships with peers. Helping girls stay safe involves working with their complicated reality. This course will help clinicians understand the depth as well as the interplay of the issues involved. Treatment guidelines and techniques will be discussed. Prevention work with this age group is crucial, effective prevention strategies will be addressed. The importance of engaged parents, high schools and colleges will be highlighted.

Learning Objectives and References

Faculty: Cindy Solin, L.I.C.S.W. has a full time private practice in Longmeadow, MA. She works extensively with adolescents and young adults and has a particular interest in the treatment of acquaintance sexual assault and personal safety training.


16-123a: Relentless Hope: The Refusal to Grieve

Martha Stark, M.D.

Dr. Martha Stark’s particular interest has long been in the patient’s "relentless pursuit of the (bad) object." The patient’s relentless hope (a masochistic defense) is the stance to which she desperately clings in order to avoid confronting - and grieving - certain intolerably painful realities about the love/hate object to which she is intensely attached; and her relentless outrage (a sadistic defense) is the stance to which she resorts in those moments of dawning recognition that the object might never be forthcoming after all. Finally, the patient’s relentless despair (a schizoid defense) is the stance to which she retreats when attachment itself has become intolerable. Martha will offer prototypical interventions designed to facilitate transformation of the patient’s need to possess and control the object (and, when thwarted, to retaliate by attempting to destroy it) into the mature capacity to relent, accept, grieve, forgive, internalize, separate, and move on.

Learning Objectives and References

Faculty: Martha Stark, M.D. is Faculty, Harvard Medical School; Founder and CEO, SynergyMed for MindBodyHealth; Co-Director, Center for Psychoanalytic Studies, William James College; and Former Faculty, Boston Psychoanalytic Institute and Massachusetts Institute for Psychoanalysis. She is the author of six award-winning books on psychoanalytic theory and practice: Working with Resistance, A Primer on Working with Resistance, Modes of Therapeutic Action, The Transformative Power of Optimal Stress, Psychotherapeutic Moments, and How Does Psychotherapy Work?


16-124a: Evidence-based Practice: What Social Workers Need to Know

James W. Drisko, Ph.D. , L.I.C.S.W.

Evidence-based Practice [EBP] is a recent, but poorly understood, influence on practice, policy, funding and research. EBP promotes use of the best available research evidence in practice. EBP includes equal emphasis on client values and preferences, research, and clinical expertise - it is not just about research. EBP is also a perspective that privileges certain forms of "evidence." EBP is also a policy approach that used to limit practitioner autonomy while reducing costs and (perhaps) improving overall patient outcomes. These three different EBP perspectives may work well together, or be sources of confusion and even bitter contention.

This presentation will detail the 4 core components of the EBP practice decision-making model and the 6 steps of doing EBP. EBP is distinguished from empirically supported treatments (ESTs) and best practices. Efforts to ensure patient participation and the role of clinical expertise will be emphasized. Limits to EBP research and its medical orientation are examined, along with new challenges it presents.

The strengths of EBP in distinguishing effective intervention options from often used but ineffective ones will be explored. The limits to rigorous outcome research for many disorders will also be noted, along with limited research on diverse populations. The sometimes awkward fit of socials work's person-in-environment perspective with medical model research will also be explored. Consideration of economic and policy issues will locate EBP in context.

Didactic presentation, an interactive examination of a Cochrane Collaboration systematic review (best EBP research), handouts, extensive Q & A, and online resources will be included.

Learning Objectives and References

Faculty: Dr. James Drisko Ph.D. , L.I.C.S.W. is professor at the Smith College School for Social Work in Northampton, Massachusetts. A clinical social worker with extensive experience with children and families, he has written extensively on clinical practice and practice research. Dr. Drisko was elected to the National Academies of Practice in Social Work in 2008 and was named an inaugural Fellow of the Society for Social Work and Research in 2014. He is author of "Evidence-based Practice in Clinical Social Work" with Dr. Melissa Grady.



Saturday, June 18, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

16-131a: Clinical Hypnosis for Mental Health Practitioners Course Closed

David Gottsegen, M.D. A.B.M.H. ,
Shelly Johnson Gottsegen, M.S.W. L.I.C.S.W.

Despite the aura of magic and showmanship that surround the word, hypnosis is a clinically effective tool with a wide variety of applications. There are thousands of articles in the scientific literature supporting its use for chronic pain, surgery, habit disorders, depression, anxiety, and panic disorders. Furthermore, the principles of Ericksonian hypnosis are well-accepted principles of strategic, brief, and any sound psychotherapy practice. We have used clinical hypnosis in a variety of settings for two decades. We are approved consultants with the American Society of Clinical Hypnosis. Shelly is currently supervising a therapist in his pursuit of certification in this field. We have taught ASCH approved workshops both regionally and nationally.

Learning Objectives and References

Faculty: David Gottsegen is a community pediatrician and a clinical instructor with the Tufts University School of Medicine, Baystate Medical Center campus, who has been practicing clinical hypnosis for 25 years. He see's consults from specialists throughout Western Mass., has taught in a wide variety of settings, and has written several articles on the subject.

Faculty: Shelly Johnson Gottsegen is a Clinical Licensed Social Worker in private practice in South Hadley Massachusetts. She has been in solo practice since 2002. Before that she was lead clinical Psychiatric Social Worker at Baystate Medical Center in the psychiatric outpatient department.

She has been using hypnosis in her work with clients for the last fifteen years. She is a Certified Member and an Approved Advanced Consultant for ASCH (American Society of Clinical Hypnosis).


16-132a: Somatic Experiencing: Expanding the Psychodynamic Dialogue

David Levit, Ph.D. , ABPP

Somatic Experiencing (SE) is a model originally developed by Peter Levine for understanding and treating Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. It has been expanded to treat psychic/somatic/nervous system dysregulation more generally. SE provides perspectives and approaches that are especially helpful in our work with patients who are prone to either states of intense over-activation (anxiety, panic, terror, agitation, rage, mortification, etc. ) or under-activation (freeze, numbness, emptiness, deadness, etc. ). A central aim of SE is to facilitate the restoration and enhancement of the patient's intrinsic regulatory capacities, with the larger goal of bringing a more highly resourced self to the task of processing life's ongoing experiences (including experiences in the treatment context). SE has particular relevance for people who are vulnerable to the triggering of dissociative states related to trauma.

Dr. Levit recently completed the three-year training program in SE. He will discuss his efforts to integrate this approach into psychodynamic psychotherapy. On the theoretical level, he will discuss and contextualize central principals and techniques of SE in terms of psychoanalytic paradigms. On the clinical level, he will present psychotherapy process material to illustrate his attempts to interweave this non-psychoanalytic approach into psychodynamic treatment. He will also discuss ways in which the weave is not seamless.

Learning Objectives and References

Faculty: David Levit, Ph.D. , ABPP is a Diplomate in Psychoanalysis and in Clinical Psychology and a Fellow at the American Board and Academy of Psychoanalysis. He is an SEP (Somatic Experiencing Practitioner). He is in private practice in Amherst, MA where he provides individual therapy and psychoanalysis, and consultation for colleagues. His current faculty positions are: Faculty, Massachusetts Institute for Psychoanalysis (MIP); Co-founder, Co-chair, MIP Postgraduate Fellowship Program-West; Associate Clinical Professor of Psychiatry, Tufts Medical School; Adjunct Associate Professor, Smith College School for Social Work.


16-133a: Eating Disorders: Etiology and Treatment Approaches from Adolescence to Adulthood

Chelsea MacCaughelty, L.C.S.W.

Eating disorders have the highest mortality rate of any psychiatric disorder. This course will focus on the spectrum of eating disorders, specifically including anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, and binge-eating disorder. There will be some focus on and discussion of the change in diagnostic criteria from DSM-IV-TR to DSM-5 and the rationale for the changes. Predisposing, precipitating, and perpetuating evidence-based factors related to the development of eating disorders will be reviewed and discussed as well as how eating disorders may be viewed through a biopsychosocial lens. Potential medical complications, warning signs and symptoms, common transference and countertransference dynamics when working with clients with eating disorders, and useful concepts for understanding eating disorders will be highlighted. Lastly, a variety of treatment modalities (CBT, Mentalization-based, DBT, ACT, family systems) and their effectiveness in the treatment of eating disorders will be reviewed. Case examples will be used throughout the presentation.

Learning Objectives and References

Faculty: Chelsea MacCaughelty, L.C.S.W.; Creator and Co-developer of the Eating Disorder Track (EDT) as well as Clinical Staff Social Worker at The Menninger Clinic in Houston, Texas; PhD Candidate at Smith College School of Social Work; Member of research group examining effectiveness of the Eating Disorder Track and other clinical outcomes. Chelsea graduated with Bachelor and Master of Social Work degrees from The University of Georgia before completing a Post-Graduate Fellowship on the Eating Disorders Program (EDP) and Professionals in Crisis (PIC) unit at Menninger.


16-134a: Queer Theory, Queer Practice: Queering Social Work Course Closed

Davey Shlasko, M.Ed.

In this session we'll discuss some key approaches of queer theory and apply them to the field and practice of social work. Drawing on techniques of "queer reading" and inquiry, and on the experiences of everyone in the group, we'll address questions like: How have our understandings and definitions of gender and sexual identities evolved over time, and how are the histories of these categories relevant today? What does it look like when we really understand identities as non-binary, non-essential, socially constructed and performative? What do these queer understandings teach us about our work with individuals and groups, and about our role as helping professionals? How can we work effectively with people who understand their identities queerly, and how might queer theory complicate our assumptions about what it means to work effectively with anyone? Expect a highly interactive day, with a combination of activities, reflection, small- and large-group discussions, and lively theory presentations. This session is appropriate for those with no academic background in queer theory, as well as those already familiar with queer theory who want to think about its application to social work.

Learning Objectives and References

Faculty: Davey Shlasko is an educator, author and consultant, whose passion is facilitating group learning about & in the context of social movements. Davey's work combines dialogue, expressive arts, popular education and practical skills building to help groups deepen their understanding and practice of social justice principles. Davey has been writing and teaching about queer communities along with other social justice topics since 2000.


16-135a: Time-In, Not Time-Out: Strategies for Co-Regulation with Traumatized Adolescents and Families

Martha B. Straus, Ph.D.

Traumatized adolescents struggle with self-regulation. They are dysregulated across systems--neurologically, cognitively, physically, emotionally, behaviorally, socially, and spiritually. Anxious and vigilant, and unable to trust themselves or caregivers, they may experience even loving relationships as confusing and frightening. But to learn self-soothing, they must first be able to rely upon others, and discover the joy of co-regulation. They benefit from relationships with adults that provide them with the psychological (and physical) sense of containment they cannot supply themselves. In this workshop, we will discuss and practice mindful, empathic strategies to help these teens--and their parents--feel more secure, connected, present, and stable.

Learning Objectives and References

Faculty: Martha B. Straus, Ph.D. -- is a professor in the Department of Clinical Psychology at Antioch University New England Graduate School in Keene, New Hampshire, and adjunct instructor in psychiatry at Dartmouth Medical School. She maintains a small private practice in Brattleboro, VT and consults to schools, social service agencies and courts. Dr. Straus is the author of numerous articles and four books including No-Talk Therapy for Children and Adolescents, and more recently, Adolescent Girls in Crisis: Intervention and Hope. Dr. Straus trains and conducts workshops internationally.