What makes the Kint Institute training different from other training programs?
The Kint Institute certificate program evolved out of a serendipitous gathering of faculty for a two-day trauma conference presentation several years ago. At the time, the group of presenters did not know one another, and only a few had worked together for a special issue on trauma for The Arts in Psychotherapy. And yet, what they discovered was a shared sense of what effective trauma treatment looks like and how the arts can support change, as well as a set of shared values about teaching, learning, and humanitarianism. Those shared values are the core of our training program and include the sense that people grow in safe environments where they are both held and challenged, where their clinical experience is valued, and where they feel part of a thriving community of like-minded practitioners.
When we conducted interviews for our first cohort, what applicants most spoke about was a sense of isolation in the work. Trauma, by its very nature, creates fragmentation. Therapists who treat traumatized people are often doing so in systems in which they too are exposed to elements of trauma, including a lack of institutional support, a disconnection between what they know and what they are told, and productivity goals that undercut a sense of dignity and value for therapists and patients alike. At Kint, we want to not only engage together in clinical learning, but also to provide a professional community that counteracts the qualities imbedded in unhealthy systems.
The mental health field itself continues to mirror trauma dynamics in that it remains siloed, so that therapists often spend time in professional communities in which they are only gathered with people who share their clinical approach or are from their discipline. In our program, art therapists learn alongside dance therapists, drama therapists talk about song while music therapists speak the language of theatre. Psychologists, marriage and family therapists, and social workers engage with the arts and contribute their clinical knowledge of trauma.
We teach an integrative approach that distills each creative arts therapy modality to its core elements so that students are not just learning one method, but walk away with a set of tools that they can then implement with their patients, in their own way. As such, our program is a rare integrative one that sees value in a range of arts modalities and frames these using theory and research from the wider fields of trauma, neuroscience, and attachment studies. In this sense, all our students bring something important to the table, and find they re-affirm what they already know while internalizing new knowledge.
Making a commitment to training at Kint is making a commitment to yourself and to your patients. It is an opportunity to participate in a group of talented practitioners and thinkers. And it is a chance to join a growing community at the ground level. What are you waiting for?