Professional Development

We offer trainings that help you grow as a professional and maintain your licensure.

Get in touch to learn more about training opportunities.

As a care professional, you know that no matter what life brings, people deserve to be seen by experts and for who they are. 

For 30 years, JSSA has provided high-quality training and continuing education to our community’s mental health and social work professionals. We offer training focused on everything from cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) practices to palliative care to ensure you continue to grow as a professional and receive the continuing education credits you need to maintain your licensure. 

Get in touch today to learn more about JSSA’s professional development offerings:


Tools for Therapists to Support Clients and Families Navigate the Special Education Process

TIME: 9:00 AM – 12:15 PM
COST: $70
3 Category I CE’S – This will be a live, real-time, interactive Webinar. A ZOOM link will be sent to you 24 hours before the training. 


This workshop will introduce attendees to special education laws and applications in a way that will enhance their ability to support clients attending public schools and their families. Mental Health practitioners will learn about the laws that underpin the US special education procedures and how they can help families navigate the system and support their children. This includes a better understanding of the IEP, 504, and BIP processes and the role they can play in ensuring that clients and families get their needs met.

Learning Objectives: Upon completion of this introductory course, participants will be able to:

1.       Name one piece of legislation that formed the groundwork for current special education laws.
2.       Name three steps schools must take before creating an Individualized Education Plan.
3.       Describe two accommodations that IEPs, 504s, and BIPs can provide for students.


Presenter Bios:

Alex Hammer, LCSW-C, is the Director of Clinical Operations for JSSA’s Fallsgrove location, supervising the outpatient therapists on the Children and Families team. Before working at JSSA, Alex was the Director of Mental Health for Linkages to Learning at the YMCA Youth and Family Services, connecting communities with school-based behavioral health therapy. Alex also has experience as the manager of inpatient behavioral health services at Adventist Behavioral Health Hospital working with individuals across the lifespan in a therapeutic inpatient setting with varying levels of acuity, with both voluntary and involuntary admissions.

Jennifer Connor, LCSW-C, is a clinician for MindCraft, JSSA’s school-based mental health services program. Prior to working at JSSA, Jen was a school social worker for a non-public special education high school that worked with clients from Montgomery County, Prince George’s County, Howard County, and D.C. public schools. There, she provided individual and group therapy services, created and implemented social-emotional goals on IEPs, and created and maintained FBAs and BIPs for all clients on her caseload.

Laney Park, LICSW, LCSW-C, LCSW, is a Program Director for MindCraft, JSSA’s school-based mental health services program. Before coming to JSSA, Laney provided professional development, consultation, and direct mental health support in public, private, and charter schools in Washington, D.C., and Maryland.


Addressing Implicit Bias*

TIME: 9:00 AM – 12:15 PM
COST: $70
3 Category I CE’S – This will be a live, real-time, interactive Webinar. A ZOOM link will be sent to you 24 hours before the training. 


This three-hour workshop is focused on the development of strategies to address the common yet complex issues concerning implicit bias that behavioral health professionals face in their practice. Content will cover the following: the legal definition of implicit bias, identification of implicit bias in behavioral health practice, strategies for addressing microaggressions, establishing and maintaining a practice of self-awareness, use of self, and examination of implicit bias for effective outcomes. Current legal references will be provided concerning relevant statutes and the codes of practice for behavioral health professionals.

Learning Objectives: Participants will be able to:
1. Examine the meaning of implicit bias and its impact on the delivery of behavioral health services.
2. Explore professional practice issues when delivering services to diverse clients and working with diverse co-workers.
3. Examine the Use of Professional Self


Presenter Bio:
Gisele Ferretto, MSW, LCSW-C, has over 35 years of social work experience in both clinical and macro practice areas. Her areas of expertise include policy, professional ethics, supervision and leadership, confidentiality, social work and field practicum education, child welfare practice, and curriculum development. Ms. Ferretto provides consultation and training for private and public agencies in her areas of expertise. She has served on a variety of committees and boards at the local, state, and national levels developing policy and program initiatives.

Currently, Ms. Ferretto is on the Faculty at the University of Maryland School of Social Work (SSW). During her tenure at the SSW, she has held positions in the Office of Field Education, Title IV-E Education for Public Child Welfare Program, Child Welfare Academy, Family Connections Baltimore, and Social Work Community Outreach Service (SWCOS). Prior to her time at the SSW, she served as an administrator at the Maryland Department of Human Services in the following programs: Child Protective Services, the Office of Equal Opportunity, and the Office of Staff Development and Training. Ms. Ferretto began her social work career as a Child Protective Services Worker at the Baltimore City Department of Social Services

*This workshop meets the criteria described in COMAR (Continuing Education Requirements) A (1) (d) which requires 3 Category I continuing education units on the topic of “anti-oppressive social work practice content focusing on race, culture, or equity, and include one or more of the following topics: (i) Cultural humility; (ii) Social justice;(iii) Racial equity;(iv) Implicit bias; or (v) Anti-racism practices.”

Training Institute Policies:
Refunds for JSSA’s CE training program cancellations are provided up to 5 days before the training date. After that time, a credit can be issued if JSSA receives a registrant’s cancellation up to two business days before the training date. This credit can be applied towards a future 3-hour CE training, symposium, or post-graduate course up to one year from the issue date.
The Jewish Social Service Agency (JSSA) is authorized by the Maryland Board of Social Work Examiners to sponsor Category 1 continuing education programs. The D.C. and Virginia Boards of Social Work usually recognize the Maryland Board of Social Work Examiners’ approval. Please contact your state board for verification. JSSA maintains responsibility for its program content.
JSSA is an approved sponsor of CE credits for psychologists in Maryland under the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene. JSSA maintains responsibility for its program content.
NBCC has approved JSSA as an Approved Continuing Education Provider, ACEP No. 6457. Programs that do not qualify for NBCC credit are clearly identified. JSSA is solely responsible for all aspects of the programs.
To receive a certificate, registrants must attend the entire session.