Advanced Training Certificate

Affirmative Therapy for Transgender Communities

This comprehensive training will support mental health providers in offering affirmative therapy & becoming a stronger advocates for Transgender, Gender Non-Conforming, Gender Expansive, and Non-Binary (TGNCNB) people.

Program Overview

Most mental health provider training programs lack comprehensive training for clinicians offering affirmative care for Transgender, Gender Non-conforming, Gender Expansive and Non-binary (TGNCNB) people. Due to this gap in training, Transgender and Gender Expansive communities struggle to find competent mental health providers who can both address intersections of identity and offer affirming care. 

As well, clinicians often feel isolated and siloed when offering care and advocating for TGNCNB communities. To fill this harmful gap in mental health services and offer providers support, education, and supervision the Advanced Training in Affirmative Therapy for Transgender Communities was developed. 

Over the yearlong training, participants can expect to:

  • Incorporate training into practice of affirmative therapy and exceptional care for TGNCNB clients

  • Attend 2 in-person weekend trainings bookending supervision

  • Participate in 30 hours of online group supervision

  • Receive monthly readings that will build TGNCNB knowledge base and skills

  • Build community with other TGNCNB affirmative providers

  • Collaborate on an ever-expanding resource database for TGNCNB affirmative services

  • Receive a certificate of completion for the Advanced Training in Affirmative Therapy for Transgender Communities

  • Earn social work CEUs, in collaboration with the Center for Social Work Education

10% of the revenue from this program will return to the community through funding scholarships, research projects, and student programs.

Program Options

  • In-Person Training Dates: February 21-22, 2020 & September 25-26, 2020
  • Location: Widener University, Chester, PA (outside of Philadelphia, PA)
  • View Maps & Directions
  • Supervision: Offered through March-December 2020 via secure video conferencing

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We are accepting applications for our West Cost cohort which will be offered in Seattle, Washington. 

  • In-Person Training Dates: January 24-25, 2020 & August 14-15, 2020
  • Location: Kaiser Pemanente, Capital Hill neighborhood, Seattle, WA
  • Supervision: Offered through March-December 2020 via secure video conferencing

Apply Now

Admissions Information

*Applications will be accepted throughout the year for each training program, so please indicate in your application essay which you are hoping to join. Space is limited to 30 participants to assure individualized training experiences.

Scholarships have been created to assure that these trainings increase the number of therapists who are greatly needed in our community of support professionals. Therapists who are part of the following communities are encouraged to apply:

  • People of color
  • Transgender & gender non-binary therapists
  • Clinicians with strong religious affiliations 

How to Apply for a Scholarship

To be considered for a scholarship, please submit a 250-word essay sharing your personal connection to this work, your therapy role/goals, and how you will use this training to achieve your therapy/treatment goals. The essay should be submitted as supplemental material as part of your online application.

We review applications on a rolling basis.

Program Highlights

transgender flag

Increase Knowledge, Skills, & Advocacy

This training provides a strong foundation of knowledge in the areas of Transgender and Gender Expansive identity development, TGNCNB advocacy, and therapy approaches across the life span. The content centers the intersections of race, ethnicity, spirituality, culture, trauma, politics, social justice, as well as impacts of cisgender privilege and gatekeeping. This vital content is offered through direct instruction, guest speaker presentations and panels, case explorations and monthly readings that are selected specifically to build on participants existing knowledge and skills and move them further.

PsyD MCJ Dual Degree University Center Student

Faculty Mentorship & Supervision

This program brings together leaders in the field and community to generate a dynamic training and supervision program that our faculty, as clinicians, all wish they had when beginning their careers as mental health providers. Expert faculty members in the field of transgender mental health care will lead the training and provide on-going online supervision which is scheduled at times that are convenient for your schedule.

Faculty

Damon Constantinides, PhD, LCSW
Associate Adjunct Professor

I believe that the year long supervision component is crucial to application, community building, and professional growth and makes this training unique in the field.

Linda Aline Hawkins
Adjunct Professor

I have been a therapist working with LGBTQ children, youth, and families for the last 20 years. I went into this work to raise the voices of individuals who are far too often silenced.

In 2014, I founded the Gender & Sexuality Development Clinic at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia to have a way for Transgender and Gender Expansive children, youth, and their families to receive multidisciplinary care. In supporting these wonderful families, it became clear that there needs to be many more therapists who can provide support. My motivation in building this training program is to have more therapists in the community who can provide this great care.

Sean Lare, LCSW-C
Associate Adjunct Professor

My passion for this work and excitement to be a part of this program is personally fueled by the many individuals who cannot live their lives as their full selves, to stand up proudly as an example for my young child, and to let many people know that living life as a transgender person is a reality of possibilities; and, professionally fueled by the many providers interested in receiving training so that they may better serve all of their clients/patients and so that someday access to trans-affirming and trans-competent care is no longer a barrier for the millions of transgender and non-binary people across the lifespan in the U.S.

Deidre Ashton, LCSW profile
Associate Adjunct Professor

I am passionate about working with couples, families, and individuals to navigate life challenges and transitions and to live the lives they envision. I believe that we are all relational beings who are more likely to flourish when relationships are going well and to suffer when they are not.

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Visit Us

To visit Widener is, more often than not, to fall in love with the place. To fit your timeline and schedule, we offer a variety of ways to get to know us.

View Tuition and Fees

The cost of the advanced training program includes the full year of supervision as well as all materials and meals at the weekend training sessions. Tuition may be paid in installments.

Financial Aid

At Widener, opportunities for financial aid extend to graduate students. Discover how Widener can help make obtaining your degree possible.

Next steps to apply

We’re glad you made the decision to apply. All applications and supplemental materials are submitted through the online application system. 

Get in Touch

We look forward to working with you and building up a community of TGNCNB affirming providers and advocates.