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Heather Schmutz

Heather is very proud of her academic background receiving her Bachelors in Psychology as well as her Masters in Social Work from Rutgers University School of Social Work. Her first job ever was working in the field at age 17 with a special needs school and she’s grateful that she’s always known her calling since she was young. Heather has a diverse background and work history from her beginning case management days as well as group counseling, admissions for a private behavioral health hospital, residential care, intensive outpatient, in community therapy, and a number of years as a Crisis Manager for Camden County where she was a certified screener for NJ. Her clinical hours were achieved in acute care settings and she is a fully Licensed Clinical Social Worker for the State of New Jersey.

Heather’s career has shifted from adolescents to adults, including small children utilizing her specialty skills in trauma, personality disorders, and working with those on the autistic spectrum. At the core of her treatment approach she believes in “practical application” (only setting realistic and desired goals) in addition to patient driven therapy. She strongly believes that the patient will work on all issues that need addressing on their own time and terms with her support and guidance from ages 5 to 105.

Heather approaches sessions in a relaxed casual manner inviting patients and loved ones to “make themselves at home” believing comfort is a priority. Patients are encouraged to be as honest and blunt as they wish, “because when we’re busy choosing ‘the right words’ we may lose our point(s) and passion.” She gladly welcomes patients to bring loved ones in as needed to work on barriers and remain involved in the process at the patients discretion. When working with young children Heather asks guardians to be in involved in the entire first session (post intake) then ease back gradually on future sessions. While children will spend majority of the session with Heather at the beginning or end of the session she invites families to join in.

Heather’s passions are patient advocacy and education feeling her role is also to teach patients and families the skills they need to accomplish goals in her absence. In conjunction with this Heather also began teaching undergraduate courses in the area hoping to be able to reach a larger audience outside of patients and staff. What keeps her there years later is her drive to educate students on human behaviors, rights and the importance of embracing culture and spirituality in everyday interactions. Heather considers herself very open minded and always strives to meet patients at their level as a partner in their healing process.

Heathers's Programs

This group allows younger teens a guided peer discussion format to address the stresses of school, social and family life. It’s a great place to ask all those awkward questions in a same space as members increase social skills and decrease anxiety.

 

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