Our Clinical Team

Drawing on years of clinical techniques and supportive interventions, our highly credentialed therapists design sophisticated therapy plans that specifically address each boy’s needs – and those of his family.

Arden L. Weintraub, M.D.

Arden L. Weintraub, M.D.

Psychiatrist

"I love working as part of a team, and that I come to work expecting to learn. I feel I can learn from anyone ... therapists, teachers, staff, or students. It's a two-way street."

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Credentials

  • Adjunct Professor of Psychiatry, University of Utah School of Medicine
  • Board-Certified Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist
  • Extensive experience treating youth in residential settings since 1992
  • Certified Wilderness First Responder

Philosophy

Dr. Weintraub believes open communication and a casual atmosphere create mutual respect. He insists that Gateway students, as well as parents and staff members, call him "Arden." Arden also believes in the importance of being conservative in the prescription of medications, and observing the boys in a variety of activities in order to make informed treatment decisions.

 

Professional

Arden has decades of experience as a child and adolescent psychiatrist, as well as an ongoing affiliation with the University of Utah School of Medicine. Arden has spent his career helping young people overcome depression, school problems, drug use, poor social skills, nonverbal learning disorders, oppositional behaviors, and family conflicts. Arden works at Gateway three to four days a week, which is much more psychiatric time than other residential treatment programs offer. Arden not only meets formally with the students and therapists at Gateway, but he is always available to staff when he's away from the program.

Personal

Arden is an avid cyclist and hiker. He believes that leisure time and recreational activities contribute to a sense of well-being, and are healthy outlets for people who would otherwise turn to drugs or other destructive behaviors.

Creating Student Success

One young man was taking seven medications when he arrived at Gateway Academy. He suffered from severe anxiety which resulted in fainting spells. After careful observation and coordination with therapists and staff, Arden was able to gradually take the student off all medications. Previously unable to participate in activities due to his anxiety and fainting spells, the boy began enjoying hiking, skiing, and other activities with his peers.

Jean Zehndar M.D.

Jean Zehndar M.D.

Psychiatrist

"It is important to me that each meeting I have with the youth I work with at Gateway, I communicate to that student their individual worth, uniqueness, and hope for a bright future.  I want them to feel comfortable discussing any issue without being judged and know that I am their advocate."

 

 

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Credentials

  • Doctor of Medicine, Wayne State University School of Medicine
  • Triple Board Residency in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, Pediatrics, and Adult Psychiatry, University of Utah Affiliated Hospitals
  • Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
  • Extensive experience treating youth in residential settings since 1995
  • Licensed Physician in Utah and Ethiopia

Philosophy

Jean believes that the difficulties youth experience before coming to Gateway need to be understood within their developmental, biological, family, and social contexts.  Jean believes medication should only be used sparingly, with the input and informed consent of the youth and parents, taking into account the observations of staff, their therapist, and teachers.  Jean communicates with the parents shortly after their son’s admission as well as after each time she meets with him to keep them involved in, and informed of, all medical treatment decisions.

PROFESSIONAL

Jean has worked with adolescents and their families since 1995 in residential and day treatment settings. In both residential and day treatment programs Jean has helped youth transition from wilderness programs, the State Hospital, and acute inpatient hospitalizations back to their families. Jean has worked with youth who struggle with depression, bipolar disorder, ADHD, school problems, anxiety, aggression, psychosis, substance abuse, oppositional behaviors, nonverbal learning disorder, and autistic spectrum disorder.  She was the psychiatrist for a day treatment team for adolescents with autistic spectrum disorder for fourteen years.
Jean has also worked with adults and children in outpatient settings for the past two years.

Additionally, Jean has traveled to India and Ethiopia for humanitarian medical clinics as a pediatrician.

PERSONAL
Jean grew up near the Great Lakes and has a life long affection for swimming, waterskiing, and sailboarding.  Having lived in Utah for 25 years, she has also acquired a sincere appreciation for snow skiing and hiking, not to mention heat without the humidity and mosquitos.  Jean also enjoys travel, especially visiting her three children at college.

CREATING STUDENT SUCCESS
 I have had several patients come to residential on medication who do not want to be on medication. The medications may have been added during a crisis or a decompensation, and neither the student nor the parent knows if they have helped or not. In many, but not all cases it is possible for the youth to learn new ways of dealing with anger, anxiety, or depression and slowly taper medications with the parents consent within the controlled setting of Gateway.  Having input from the entire team is invaluable.   Many times, students are able to come off of their medications or be on fewer medications or lower dosages.

Julie Barbero, LCSW

Julie Barbero, LCSW

Clinical Director and Co-Owner

"At Gateway, we are relentless in our quest to find the most effective treatment for each individual student. No two boys are the same—so the therapeutic interventions and approach must be tailored to each boy's unique needs. Even in the course of a single day, we will use several different clinical approaches until a method clicks. The entire staff is commitied to the success of each and every boy, and our clinical team is exceptional. I would trust my own child in Gateway's care."

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Credentials

  • Licensed Clinical Social Worker
  • Master of Science, Adolescent Family Therapy, University of Denver
  • Bachelor of Science, Social Work and Psychology, Weber State University
  • Adolescent and family therapist since 1993
  • Developed adolescent programs and residential treatment curriculum at multiple facilities

Philosophy

For Julie, creating emotional security is the first essential step in helping a boy to overcome his trauma, anxiety, depression, and the difficult obstacles in his life. Julie also believes that the intentional use of relationship and interactions with each boy also provide opportunities for the boys to develop, test and refine new interpersonal skills. Julie ensures that every member of the Gateway team creates daily positive experiences to instill confidence and hope in the boys. By building on these moments in Gateway's safe, homelike, environment, the boys allow themselves to be vulnerable and begin to face painful emotions and take risks to develop new skills. The open, trusting relationships they develop with Julie and the staff also becomes a model for how to create healthy relationships back home.

Professional

Julie has experience working in nearly every residential position including line staff, therapist, and now Clinical Director. She has been working as a social worker and family therapist since 1993. Julie's extensive education and experience provides her a comprehensive understanding that guides her in designing and overseeing Gateway boys' individualized treatment. Julie has presented as a professional in numerous state conferences regarding adolescent development, gender-specific therapy and specialized treatment approaches for addressing trauma, grief and substance abuse. Julie firmly believes that a team approach achieves the best results, so she works closely with the entire staff to implement a unified vision, constant communication, and diverse array of clinically sophisticated therapies.

Personal

Julie enjoys hiking, skiing, recreation rock climbing and yoga. She also loves any activity that allows her to experience the world through the eyes of her two young daughters, including reading, cooking and gardening together.

Creating Student Success

Julie remembers working with a boy who was so depressed and anxious he refused to go outside of his home for nearly a year. He was transferred to Gateway after a brief hospitalization. Julie began working with the boy by talking for only short periods of time, taking walks around campus, and engaging in experiential opportunities for indirect expression of his feelings. Over time, their sessions gradually increased until he became comfortable enough to talk about his feelings and begin to develop skills to cope with stress and bolster his self confidence. The boy's parents also participated in family therapy with Julie where they learned to alter their parenting style to better help their son. Equipped with the coping mechanisms he learned at Gateway, the young man is now able to manage his residual anxieties. He now attends a university, sometimes returning to Utah in the summer to work at as a mentor for other boys at Gateway.

 

M. Michelle Gourley, MFT, LCSW, JD

M. Michelle Gourley, MFT, LCSW, JD

Director of Clinical Development and Co-Owner

"As a Gateway owner, it is extremely important to me to provide a safe, caring, clinically sophisticated, and individually tailored approach to each student. I believe this is the way to provide a truly effective and caring method of healing. I'm so lucky to be able to do what I love, and to do it with such a talented and invested staff team. At Gateway, we care about each other. We care about the boys, and we share vision and heart. I think that makes all the difference."

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Credentials

  • Juris Doctorate, University of Utah
  • Master of Social Work, Brigham Young University
  • Master of Science, Marriage and Family Therapy, Brigham Young University
  • Licensed Clinical Social Worker
  • Licensed member of the Utah State Bar
  • Psychotherapist in residential and outpatient settings since 1982

Philosophy

Michelle believes every boy is unique, and deserves to be treated that way. No matter what issues a boy has when he arrives at Gateway, he has the potential to live a fulfilling and happy life. Michelle knows that the key to unlocking that potential is different for every student. Michelle works closely with the Gateway team to craft an individualized treatment approach that builds on each boy's strengths and addresses his unique issues. Regardless of the specific approach, Michelle insists that it is holistic—engaging the mind, the emotions and the body of each boy. The curriculum and therapy must also utilize movement and knowledge about the brain to facilitate growth and healing. Michelle believes that every interaction with a youth is an intervention.

Professional

Michelle has been working with youth and their families since 1982. As a clinical social worker, a family psychotherapist and a private family and juvenile law attorney, Michelle's career has been spent working on behalf of youth and their families. Michelle has extensive experience working in both residential and outpatient settings. She also has many years experience providing clinical assessment of adolescents for the Utah Third District Juvenile Court. Michelle has presented as a professional in both state and national conferences regarding adolescent development, juvenile sexual development, and specialized treatment approaches incorporating neuroscience and movement. Michelle was instrumental in making Gateway the first program in the country to include the science of deliberate movement within its treatment and academic curriculum, and she continues to study and incorporate cutting-edge research on the brain and adolescent development into Gateway's academic curriculum and therapy.

Personal

Michelle loves music, poetry, and photography. She is a violinist, scuba diver, and avid cyclist. Her friends tease her about reading "boring" books, but her desire to know all there is to know about the brain is insatiable. Above all, Michelle loves spending time with her family and friends.

Creating Student Success

Michelle's success story is every boy at Gateway. As an owner and clinician, she has been able to bring her vision of a safe, validating environment, individualized treatment, and the application of current research to life at Gateway. Whether facilitating a therapy session, training staff or improving programming, Michelle is invested in ensuring the success of each youth at Gateway. As a result, she has had the privilege of sharing in the accomplishments and healing of many boys and their families.

Emily Faber, MSW, LCSW

Emily Faber, MSW, LCSW

Alpine Therapist

"Building a relationship with my kids is key. I first develop rapport so they know they have a safe relationship with me. After we have that foundation, we work together to identify and achieve their goals so they can be more confident and successful."

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Credentials

  • Master of Social Work, University of Utah
  • Bachelor of Science in Environmental Studies, Western Michigan University
  • Licensed Clinical Social Worker
  • Structured studies in India focused on self-soothing with meditation and yoga.

Philosophy

Emily understands the importance of building a strong, safe, grounded relationship with each boy. To do so, Emily connects with each young man on an individual level. She also helps each young man understand that she doesn't "fix" them. She does not believe any young man is "broken". Rather, Emily believes each youth needs to learn new skills to take responsibility for creating their own happiness.

Emily recommends that parents read The Parallel Process. For specific issues, she recommends, Addictive Thinking, SOS Help for Emotions, Helping a Child with Nonverbal Learning Disorder or Asperger's Disorder, Being Adopted, and Letting Go of Anger.

Professional

Emily has worked with at-risk youth since 1994 as wilderness staff, therapist assistant, milieu staff, and therapist. Emily specializes in helping boys who have difficulty forming relationships, boys who are anxious or depressed, and boys with executive functioning or processing disorders. Emily is known for her commitment, enthusiasm and ability to connect well with the students and their families. She loves working at Gateway because of the program's clinical sophistication.

Personal

Emily enjoys hiking, paddle boarding, yoga, biking, snowboarding, reading and cooking at home. She often uses her love of the outdoors to connect with the boys. Her colleagues describe her as a fun-loving "ball of fire."

Creating Student Success

Emily recalls working with a young man with Tourette's syndrome and substance-abuse problems. He painstakingly engaged in the difficult process of healing, working hard to get his life on track. Years later, she met him again and could see no signs of Tourette's. He was sober, attending a university, and engaged to be married. Emily has had several of her students check back with her to tell how happy they are, and how well they are doing. As a therapist, Emily's greatest reward is seeing the progress the boys make puttng into practice what they've learned at Gateway Academy.

Brandon Andrus, MSW, LCSW

Brandon Andrus, MSW, LCSW

Alpine Therapist

“Working with such a dynamic team and having so many resources available within our program and our community make the treatment process for our students and their families very rich and meaningful. I feel privileged to be able to be a small part of each student’s change process and to witness the growth that takes place within them during our short time together.”  

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Credentials

  • Master of Social Work, University of Utah
  • Bachelors Degree in Psychology, University of Utah
  • Licensed Clinical Social Worker in the state of Utah
  • Clinical experience focused on Family Systems and Solution Focused approach to addressing Anxiety, Depression, Attachment, Trauma, Addiction and Autism Spectrum Disorder. 

Philosophy

Each person I work with has the ability to transform and experience positive change. Sometimes their motivation and belief in themselves or others has been damaged or lost which has led to them approaching their day to day life by just trying to get by and survive; often shutting others out and avoiding the very people and things which could give them aid and bring peace. By developing a relationship with my students and demonstrating a belief in them as powerful individuals capable of progress and growth they are empowered and enabled to find anew the confidence, love, and acceptance that they once had in themselves. This renewed confidence and restored sense of identity is what will give them long term success and increase their social support system to aid them in the storms they will encounter as they move on in life after Gateway. 

Brandon recommends parents read Parenting From The Inside Out as well as The Anatomy of Peace: Resolving The Heart Of Conflict.

Professional

Brandon’s experience began in 2002 working with adjudicated teens in a residential treatment setting with an emphasis on outdoor recreation. Since that beginning, he has found opportunities to work in programs that utilize evidence-based relational models and experiential approaches to assist youth to develop healthy strategies to cope with their struggles. Some of Brandon’s experience includes working as a Therapist and Program Director at a therapeutic boarding school that supported latency-aged youth struggling with anxiety, depression, and issues with attachment. He has also worked as a transitional coach for families who had a child returning home after receiving wilderness and/or residential treatment. As a therapist for a wilderness program, Brandon also spent time helping teenage youth overcome struggles and build identity through adventure-based activities. During his years at Gateway, Brandon has had the opportunity to support youth struggling with trauma, attachment, executive functioning, and social deficits including Autism Spectrum Disorder, Non-verbal Learning Disorder, ADHD.

Personal

Brandon enjoys spending his free time exploring the outdoors with his wife and their two boys. Together they enjoy traveling, mountain biking, camping, hiking, fishing, and boating. Above all, he loves being a father, even when it means trading epic adventures in far-away lands for laying on the living room floor building massive toy train tracks and Lego sets with his sons.

Creating Student Success

Brandon recalls working with a boy who was nearly 18 who had struggled previously with self destructive behaviors around substance abuse and oppositionality with his parents and teachers. With the help and support of the residential structure, including feedback from his peers and insight from staff members, Brandon was able to assist this young man to develop greater awareness of his rationalization and justification for treating others so poorly and how he used substances as a way to avoid his negative self beliefs.  Eventually, this young man was able to identify the ways he was pushing others away through his avoidant coping strategies. He began using running and his previous love for sports as a way to cope with his anxiety and depression. He repaired his relationships with his parents little by little as he was more open to others and more comfortable with himself as an individual.

Cooper Golden, MA (Counseling Psychology), LCMHC

Cooper Golden, MA (Counseling Psychology), LCMHC

Alpine Therapist

“The Gateway program is superbly structured and organized with evidenced based practices. Clear objectives and healthy relationships are modeled from the top down. Each student and staff is treated with respect and kindness. With an emotional focus, healthy conflict resolution and skill building, students are able to practice more effective ways to navigate and succeed in life. I’m proud to be a part of this the Gateway organization.”

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CREDENTIALS

  • Master of Counseling Psychology, Gonzaga University
  • Bachelor of Arts, Willamette University
  • Licensed Clinical Mental Health Counselor

PHILOSOPHY
A genuine relationship, where the therapist models responsibility and continued dedication to personal growth, is of utmost importance. Cooper believes building relationships from a non-judgmental standpoint gives the students at Gateway a chance to openly share the root of their issues more deeply. Once this relationship is established, students begin to work at improving their life skills in relationships, emotional regulation, behaviors and learn how to navigate more complex environments. Cooper understands the benefits of emotional safety and thorough communication in a milieu environment, which at Gateway serves as a foundation for a lifetime of future growth.
 
Cooper recommends parents read: Integral Recovery, John Dupuy. Quirky Kids: Understanding and Helping Your Child Who Doesn't Fit In- When to Worry and When Not to Worry, Perri Klass.

 
PROFESSIONAL
Cooper has been working as a therapist with adolescents and young adults at residential treatment centers since 2009. Cooper began his work with State dependent youth who could no longer be placed in foster homes. In 2011, Cooper began working at a program that specializes in severe mental health issues like schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and personality disorders. As a result, Cooper brings a depth of varied experience to assist families in working with and setting boundaries for their children.  Cooper is especially adept at finding the problem and helping family systems create realistic expectations through appropriate and respectful communication.   

PERSONAL
Cooper spends his free time mountain biking, running, crossfit training, playing basketball, fishing, hunting, cooking and painting. He never stops improving or wanting to improve his quality of life, as he believes this is the foundation for being a good therapist.
 
CREATING STUDENT SUCCESS
At Gateway, the staff works hard under the presumption that the success of the student is also the success of the staff. Highly communicative positive peer culture and staff dedication lays the foundation for growth and change at Gateway. The therapist’s role is to keep a pulse on the overall direction of treatment and to create appropriate interventions specified for the student’s individualized needs. Internal motivation, accountability, resilience and openness are modeled from day 1 of the student’s arrival to provide peak experiences in therapy.  Opportunities for trust and incidents of failure are seen not as punishable offences but learning opportunities. As a result, students gain a sense of autonomy and healthy responsibility to themselves and their family system.

Sue Hinds, MSW, LCSW

Sue Hinds, MSW, LCSW

Summit Therapist

“Working as a therapist with youth is such a rewarding career.  Every day I look forward to learning from, and adding to, my students’ life experiences. Being allowed to share in such an intimate journey to healing is why I continue in this line of work.  I always swore I would only work doing something that I truly love—and after all this time, I do!”

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Credentials

  • Licensed Clinical Social Worker
  • Master of Social Work, University of Utah
  • Trainer of Trainers in Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder, University of Wisconsin-Madison
  • Bachelor of Science, Sociology, Weber State University
  • Career focus in adolescent programming and treatment since 1997.

Philosophy

Healthy change has to be wanted and cannot be forced upon you.   That is why building relationships and creating a safe place to share is critical.  The greatest catalyst for change is a relationship that is healthy emotionally, and has boundaries. These relationship skills are sometimes forgotten or just never learned in earlier years.

Professional

Sue started her career as a mental health worker at an adolescent treatment center 1997.  After only 18 months, because of her skill and leadership, she was promoted to a residential manager at a therapeutic boarding school. This experience sparked her love for adolescents and the potential they hold. So Sue decided to go to graduate school to train as a therapist. She obtained her MSW in 2002 from the University of Utah.  Sue has experience working with at risk youth in crisis shelters and respite care and adult substance abuse treatment.  After finishing graduate school, Sue worked at a large residential facility known for their relationship model of change.  This provided the foundation for Sue’s therapeutic work to this day.  She then worked for a treatment center specializing in care for adolescents and young adults with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder.  From this experience, she developed expertise in working with youth with learning and social skill differences.

Personal

Sue enjoys spending time with her family.  Sue and her husband are actively raising a daughter who keeps them on their toes at all times. Sue and her family enjoy growing vegetables in their garden and getting outdoors as much as possible. Sue also enjoys cooking her latest recipe—“experiments” she shares with her family.

Creating Student Success

I recently was able to reconnect with a youth I had worked with over 6 years ago.  He initially presented in residential care with a severe anxiety disorder that had unfortunately led to self-medicating with alcohol that eventually lead him further down the path of drug use.  After learning in therapy to cope with his trauma, learning strategies to deal with the anxiety, and learning to communicate effectively with his parents he was able to finish high school.  Getting to see him recently was amazing.  He again thanked me but I reminded him that he did all the work—I was just allowed to be a part of the journey.  He said going to residential saved his life. 

Matt Jackman, LCMHC

Matt Jackman, LCMHC

Summit Therapist

“For me, Gateway is a place where a group of special people come together to help clients realize their potential.  It is a humbling experience to come together as a team and see the growth and development that happens to the boys and their families here at Gateway. I am grateful that I am trusted and able to be a small part of these boys' life long journey.”

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CREDENTIALS

  • Master of Science in Professional Counseling, Westminster University
  • Bachelors of Science, Psychology, University of Utah
  • Licensed Clinical Mental Health Counselor

PHILOSOPHY

Matt believes that everyone has potential, and that through support and hard work each of us can make this life what we want it to be. Matt uses the strong relationships he creates with his students as a way to address their difficult topics while assisting them to maintain a high level of accountability in the work they do together. He loves the individualized and experiential approach at Gateway and opportunities to spend time with his students outside the office to goof around and play a pickup game of basketball or ultimate Frisbee. He appreciates how much he learns from his students and their families as he supports them through their transformative journey.

 Matt recommends parents read Parenting From The Inside Out as well as The Anatomy of Peace: Resolving The Heart Of Conflict.

PROFESSIONAL

Matt’s professional experience began in 2008 as a milieu staff at Gateway Academy.  Matt was quickly promoted to the position of lead staff where he worked for several years while he attended graduate school.  Before his eventual return to Gateway Academy in his current position as a therapist, Matt worked for several years as a therapist in both residential and outpatient settings.  Matt also volunteers at The Sharing Place, a local grief counseling center for children. 

PERSONAL

Matt enjoys spending his free time with family and friends.  He enjoys experiencing the outdoors during Utah’s four diverse seasons.  His hobbies include snowmobiling, snowboarding, hiking, camping, fishing, boating, wakeboarding, and four wheeling.

CREATING STUDENT SUCCESS

Matt recalls working with a youth who was nearly 16 who came to Gateway with a history of depression, anxiety, aggressive behaviors, family relationship problems and school refusal. With the help and support of the residential structure, including feedback from his peers and insight from staff members, Matt was able to assist this boy to develop greater awareness of his emotional process and how his behaviors were bringing unwanted consequences into his life.  Through a collaborative effort with this boy, he was able to develop insight and motivation which lead to improved skills and behavioral changes that altered his unhealthy coping patterns. He began to open up and communicate with his parents and peers.  He also started to engage in several interactive activities including group games and sports.  This created a way for him to connect more meaningfully with others which in turn helped to reduce his anxiety and depression.  His relationship with those around him improved and he was able to accomplish his academic requirements.  This helped him create a positive self identity where he saw himself as competent and worthy of connection with others. 

Jen Sheridan, LCMHC

Jen Sheridan, LCMHC

Summit Therapist

“The best parenting advice I have received, I applied to my career, “Your child’s personality is formed before they come out of the womb...the best thing you can do is try to understand them, embrace their personality (whatever that is), and try to work with it...anything else would be a losing battle.”

 

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Credentials:
Master's of Counseling, University of Phoenix
Bachelor of Arts, Sociology, Colorado State University

 

Philosophy:

Jen values the strengths in every personality and works hard to identify those and highlight them to her clients and their families. Jen focuses on developing relationships with her students in order to create a safe place for them to explore maladaptive behaviors. From there, she empowers her students to advocate for themselves and problem solve so they gain a sense of control over their situation and ultimately their own life.

In addition to her work with her students, she challenges her students' parents to identify patterns and create a language to talk about them. What changes are made at home while a boy is away from home is as important as what happens at Gateway.

Jen recommends reading The Parallel Process by Krissy Pozatek, Raising an Emotionally Intelligent Child and The Relationship Cure by John Gottman. The latter is a book about marriage, but most of the principles can be applied to any relationship.

Professional:

Jen has been in the helping profession for as long as she can remember, starting with her volunteer position as a candystripper in the same hospital where she was born. In high school, she volunteered at an orphanage, and throughout her undergrad years, she served as a legal advocate at the domestic violence safehouse in town. She began working with adolescents in 2001 as a field staff for a wilderness program in Utah. Since then, she has worked in wilderness programs and residential programs as both milieu staff and then as a therapist. Jen enjoys working with boys who struggle with authority and have had difficulty trusting the adults in their life.

Personal:

When Jen isn’t working, you’ll most likely find her with her husband and daughter doing something outside. Whether it is snowboarding, skiing, cross country skiing, mountain biking, hiking, or playing fetch with her dogs depends on the season.

Creating Student Success:

A common theme with the boys that come to Gateway is some type of academic struggle in the past. Often, by the time boys are in high school an undiagnosed learning difference has taken it’s toll on the boys’ behavior, relationships, and most importantly their self esteem. Jen has seen the Gateway program as a whole teach the boys how to effectively identify their beliefs and emotions and how to then use that information to advocate for their own needs in a positive way. This empowerment can help repair the damaged ego strength that is so common with our boys. By the time a boy leaves, he has had many types of success thus creating momentum to help him take on the next step beyond Gateway.

Colleen Croff, MSW, LCSW

Colleen Croff, MSW, LCSW

Gateway House Therapist

"Youth have to believe in themselves and possibility. Humans have great capacity for change and growth, but if they don’t see this and feel it, they remain stifled and stuck. Youth not only need to believe in themselves but also have people in their lives who regularly remind them of their capacity to change despite the circumstances that may be happening at the time. Through a team approach at Gateway with parents, we all support each other in helping each student discover and develop these possibilities so that he and his family can move forward."

 

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Credentials

  • Master of Social Work, Arizona State University
  • Bachelor of Science in Psychology, University of Utah
  • Licensed Clinical Social Worker
  • Master Track & Health Track Certified in Neuro-Linguistic Programming
  • Trained in Dialectical Behavior Therapy and EMDR
  • Certified in EAGALA

Philosophy

Trust is key and the foundation of everything. It is essential to have trust and create a meaningful relationship to elicit and create change. There is great power in having these two things. Also, there is not anything that cannot change in some way. Nothing is ever fixed. We are moldable and capable of learning and changing so why not shoot for the highest stars. At least you can get somewhere and further than where you are now. The brain has a tremendous capacity to do more if we learn to optimize our abilty to learn. So I believe in helping my students challenge themselves and learn how to push themselves to reach their ultimate capabilities. 

Professional Experience

Colleen began working at Gateway in 2015 as the primary therapist at the Gateway House helping students in their final phase at Gateway to prepare for transition. Colleen began her therapeutic work after receiving her Bachelor Degree in Psychology, in 2001. During this time, she wanted to gain experience to explore what she would ultimately do with her degree. First, she started working in a residential treatment center with latency age children as a day staff.  Later, she has also worked in two different inpatient psychiatric facilities with patients ranging in age from young children to adults. It was in the next 2 years that she became clear she wanted to be a therapist and pursue her Master Degree in social work. During this time she was also conducting research for her psychology professor at the University of Utah on inner city youth and pregnancy. She felt a need to explore more why people did what they did and how to best help them become more productive and satisfied in their lives. While Colleen was pursuing her Masters degree at Arizona State University in Social Work, she interned for the Mayo Clinic doing hospital social work with transplant patients and as a therapist working with high risk families in the community who were at risk of losing their children to the State. After completing her Masters degree, Colleen returned to Salt Lake City and was hired at a residential treatment program for teen girls where she worked for the next 10 years. She gained great experience working with teens and their families on a variety of issues: mood disorders, personality disorders, attachment/adoption issues, trauma, ADHD, autism spectrum disorders, NLD, family relational issues, substance abuse, and self-esteem and identity issues. Colleen also has a small private practice where she provides outpatient therapy.

Personal

Colleen has a love for animals. She has one dog and one cat who are quite spoiled. Colleen has 2 boys and a girl who she loves dearly. She enjoys spending time with her family, fostering family growth and staying active through exercising, being outdoors and keeping up with her very active kids. She also enjoys watching NBA basketball, reading, gardening and yard work, traveling, learning new things, and spiritual growth.