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Dr. Gretchen Schmelzer – Wellness, Healing and Resilience

April 26 @ 11:45 am - 1:15 pm


Emergence from Covid: Wellness, Healing and Resilience

In-person at the Student Life Center, Navesink I, II, III and Virtually on ZOOM


Gretchen Schmelzer PhD, author and licensed psychologist will be speaking from 11:45 am – 1:15 pm, in-person at Brookdale Community College, Student Life Center and virtually on Zoom.

All students who register for virtual or attend in-person will receive a free book. She will be signing them on April 26th.

This event is free and open to the public.

Students register here

Zoom Link


New hope and understanding for survivors of repeated, relational trauma.

As a therapist, Gretchen Schmelzer has watched far too many people quit during treatment for trauma recovery. They find it too difficult or frightening or they decide that it’s just too late for them. So she wrote Journey Through Trauma specifically for survivors–to help them understand the terrain of the healing process and stay on the path.

She begins by laying out three important assumptions that support a survivor’s healing: that it is possible, that it requires courage, and that it cannot be done alone. Traumas that happen more than once–child abuse, sexual abuse, domestic violence, gang violence, war–are all relational traumas. They are traumas that happen inside a relationship and therefore must be healed inside a relationship, whether that relationship is with a therapist or within a group.

She then guides us through the five phases that every survivor must negotiate: Preparation, Unintegration, Identification, Integration, and Consolidation. She creates a mental map of the healing process that helps survivors recognize where they are in their journey to health, see where the hard parts occur, and persevere in the process of getting well. Since the cycle of healing repeated trauma is not linear, the survivor comes to understand that circling back around to a previous stage actually means progress as well as facing new challenges.

Ultimately, the healing journey is one of trust as survivors come to trust their capacity to rely on help from others and to trust themselves and the work they have done.

About Dr. Schmelzer: Gretchen Schmelzer, PhD is a licensed psychologist, executive coach and consultant who has worked for 25 years with the complex issues of trauma, integration, and behavior change across every level of system from individuals, to groups, to large systems and countries. She is the author of Journey Through Trauma, published in 2018 by Penguin Random House. Her expertise in long-term trauma was used to inform the design and delivery of a four-year large scale intervention for the UN in Cambodia working with survivors of the Khmer Rouge in a leadership initiative to strengthen the country’s response to HIV/AIDS. She is currently a faculty member in the Medical Education Masters Program at UPENN GSE, and faculty in the Executive Education Program at the Brookings Institute. She was recently featured on CNN with Anderson Cooper and Working from Home with Richard Quest. Gretchen recently moved to Philadelphia from Boston and has created a wild urban garden in her backyard.


April 26
11:45 am - 1:15 pm
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