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2011 Annual Conference
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Are You Coming? -- Answers to Questions First-Time Attendees Might Have ...

By Gray Otis, PhD, LPC, CCMHC, Chair,
Conference Planning Committee, and 2010–11
AMHCA President–Elect

Have you decided to attend our AMHCA Annual Conference July 14–16? Maybe you are like Jamison, not quite sure yet. He has never been to an AMHCA conference before, so here are questions that he and other first-time attendees might have, along with the answers, which should help them get excited about coming to San Francisco.

What makes this conference special?

For one thing, this is the first time we have two well-known keynote speakers, Scott Miller, PhD, and Rick Hanson, PhD, to kick off each full day of our conference. For another, Gerald Corey, EdD, ABPP, will be speaking Saturday afternoon on “The Counselor as a Person and as a Professional.” Make sure to register early.

How can I be inspired to be the best at what I do?

Scott Miller, PhD, never lets go of the wonderment of working with counselors and clients. If there is a way to gain greater insight on becoming a terrific clinical mental health counselor, Scott’s keynote address will show you how. Scott’s half-day special track is sure to fill up quickly. (For more information, click here.)

What does Buddha’s brain have to do with my brain?

Buddha lived a long time ago, but the philosophy he created has influenced millions. Rick Hanson, PhD, has researched how neuroscience can unlock a greater sense of virtue, mindfulness, and wisdom that leads to transformative self-beliefs. Rick will also present a half-day special track.

How can I gain advanced knowledge about “Ethical Issues in Counseling Practice” by Gerald Corey, EdD, ABPP, or about psycho-pharmacology in “Think Like a Psychiatrist” by Leslie Lundt, MD?

If you are in town on Thursday, be sure to register for one of these remarkable pre-conference presentations from two of the nation’s leading professionals.

Where will my next great idea come from?

My dad used to say, “Son, if you are not learning something every day, you are dead. You just don’t know it yet.” With workshops galore, the only problem with gaining new knowledge at AMHCA’s conference is that there so much—it’s like trying to drink out of a fire hose! And just think of all the CEs you will earn (up to 19!).

If I bring someone with me, what will they do while I’m in conference sessions?

To me, San Francisco is the world’s biggest playground. Fantastic museums, shops, sightseeing, great food, and the clang of Cable Car bells are all within a few blocks of our hotel, the Parc 55 Wyndham. But bring a jacket. Even in July, San Francisco can sometimes be downright chilly.

What is an AMHCA Diplomate?

With an ever-increasing demand for clinical mental health counselors, the profession has developed the means for counselors to be recognized as specialists. If you are a clinician who is never content to be average, you will want to learn how to better serve through outstanding practice. The AMHCA Diplomate is just one way the money you spend on conference registration goes to help our profession and each of us.

Isn’t AMHCA just like any other conference?

No, it’s really not. AMHCA’s Annual Conference is the only national conference devoted exclusively to mental health counselors. Whether you are a seasoned clinician, a newly licensed counselor, or a graduate student—this conference belongs to you. Everyone is a welcome colleague joining together to encourage and inspire one another. Come and find out for yourself.

Jamison (a real person) has decided that he would be missing out on too much if he did not attend. Since the connections among AMHCA members are one of the highlights of all of our conferences, I hope he meets all of you! See you there.

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