Oct 152008
Authors: Jessica Cline

Graduate students and faculty from the CSU Center for Family and Couple Therapy will present research on parent-child relationships, romantic relationships and family life in a dual seminar for adults and children this evening.

Coordinated through the Department of Human Development and Family Studies, the outreach program will feature two seminars to take place concurrently: one for children and one for adults.

The children’s seminar, scheduled from 5:45 to 7:15 p.m. in room 132 of the Gifford Building, will focus on helping children address bullies. The adult seminar, scheduled from 6 to 7 p.m. in room 107, will focus on strengthening couple relationships.

All of the information used in these seminars, planners said, is based on research and literature gathered by graduate students and faculty in the department.

“Our job is to make the bodies of research really practical and useful for people,” said Toni Zimmerman, a professor in the department. “As a faculty we sat down and looked at what we think are the most important things we want to inform the community about, and we chose topics from this that we think are important for adults and children.”

Ashley Harvey, an adjunct assistant professor in the department, spoke on the purpose and goals of the program.

“Basically, we feel like we have good resources and want to provide the community with our services,” Harvey said.

Children’s seminars have taken place since the spring semester, but tonight will feature the first adult seminar to the series. The seminar series concludes with one final seminar, scheduled for Nov. 19.

The adult seminar will address strategies for strengthening connections in couple relationships. It will include information about cycles of distress and strategies for creating satisfying relationships.

“The adult piece is a very nice addition for faculty to share their knowledge with all parts of the community,” Hannah Vaughan, a second-year graduate student, said.

The children’s seminar is tailored to children ages 3 to 9. Children will be advised on how to cope with bullies and how to avoid becoming bullies themselves.

“We have a really nice program planned for kids that is fun and experiential for children to learn how to deal with bullying and the skills they need to handle situations,” Zimmerman said.

Planners said the faculty and graduate students work closely to make sure the experience is beneficial for everyone attending. They meet before the seminars to go over the curriculum, and they debrief afterward to figure out if there were issues or problems and how to fix them for the next time.

“We really want to make this useful for the community and all the people that attend,” Vaughan said. “I hope that others take away important information on tough topics.”

Tickets to the event are $10 per adult, $15 per couple, $20 per child and $10 per additional sibling. For more information or to register, contact Ashley Harvey at 970-491-3011 or e-mail Ashley.Harvey@colostate.edu.

Staff writer Jessica Cline can be reached at news@collegian.com.

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