MONTCLAIR – The New Jersey Center for Tourette Syndrome & Associated Disorders (NJCTS) hosted a workshop for graduate psychology students on November 16 at Montclair State University. More than two dozen clinical psychology master’s students attended the “Tourette Syndrome: Therapeutic Approaches in the Treatment of Children and Adolescents” workshop presented by Drs. Robert A. Zambrano, Psy.D, and Rob Happich, Psy.D.
Dr. Zambrano highlighted that caring for individuals with TS – a misunderstood, misdiagnosed, inherited neurological disorder that affects 1 in 100 people – is an exercise in quality as opposed to quantity. Specifically, he said, it is important to evaluate what a child or adolescent knows, not how much they know or can do. “This work is rewarding and humbling,” Dr. Zambrano said. “Any small amount of help you can provide to families is valuable.”
Dr. Happich was straightforward in addressing the graduate students, noting that while there are many avenues of study in the field of Tourette Syndrome and associated disorders such as OCD, ADHD, anxiety and depression, it is important to keep options open and stay on top of the latest trends and information in all aspects of study. The graduate students found the presentation invaluable, noting that the doctors were “engaging, funny, articulate and very knowledgeable” and that it “shed light on something there is little awareness about.”
Through partnerships with colleges across New Jersey, NJCTS offers these workshops not only to graduate students, but also to education and medical professionals who educate and treat children with TS and associated disorders. The workshops provide numerous practice-based strategies and accommodations appropriate for students of varying ages and grade levels.
These presentations, which have taken place at nearly 20 colleges around the state, enable educators to create a learning environment that supports the social, emotional and intellectual development of all students. The attending doctors and mental health professionals also discuss the implications of a TS diagnosis outside of the classroom to facilitate a partnership between parents and educators. Interventions and modifications for behavior management are featured.
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New Jersey Center for Tourette Syndrome and Associated Disorders, Inc.
Collaborative partnerships for the TS community.