Professional Development Workshop

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Professional Development Workshop

April 12, 2013 - Hyland Hall 1308

Workshop 1 : 9:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
An Introduction to Sex-Positive Therapeutic

While the field of therapy has begun integrating supportive, strength-based practices for LBGTQIA clients, the same cannot be said for clients with other alternative sexual practices. Traditional therapy often views power dynamics and exploration of sexual fetishes as unhealthy and/or abusive. This leads traditional (and hopefully well-meaning) therapists to judge their client's sexual choices as "negative" and needing correction for a positive outcome.

In contrast, alternative sex therapists work from a supportive, strength-based stance to facilitate an interaction that is healthy and empowering for all individual and relationship needs. A key premise of this approach is the idea that relationships are strongest when all parties enter at their healthiest, most empowered and connected place. Relationships should not be based on fear, insecurity or abuse. At the base level the goal is no different than in any healthy relationship. Where alt-sex therapy differs is that there is an effort to tease out what is actually distressing to the clients without making sweeping assumptions about certain sexual choices, actions or behaviors.

This presentation focuses on an emerging therapeutic approach that embraces varying sexual expressions beyond sexual and gender identification utilizing a sex positive, strength-based approach with alternative sexuality clients.


W. Jay Blevins

Jay earned his Master's of Science Degree in Marriage and Family Therapy from Edgewood College in Madison, Wisconsin. He specializes in alternative sex therapy, alternative spirituality therapy and working with adolescents. Jay spent numerous years working at Briarpatch, a nationally recognized teen runaway and counseling center in Madison. Jay is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist with a private practice in Madison, Wisconsin. He has presented workshops on alternative sexuality at the Wisconsin Association of Marriage and Family Therapists Annual Conference, Sinsations in Leather and the CARAS Fifth Annual Alternative Sexualities Conference. Jay has contributed articles to CARAS' Standard Deviations and AASECT's Contemporary Sexuality. In addition, Jay has an MBA and has owned numerous small businesses. More about Jay and his practice is available at

Jasmine St. John

After earning her Master's of Science Degree, Jasmine spent numerous years working for various LGBTQIA and alt-sex friendly agencies. Jasmine is a licensed Systems Therapist specializing in alternative sexuality. She currently has a private practice in Madison, Wisconsin, where she sees clients from across the U.S. using a sex-positive, strength-based approach. Jasmine is a frequent conference speaker including: Sex Out Loud (2005), Outreach Speakers Bureau (2005), Satryicon (2005, 2006, 2007) Rape Crisis Annual Benefit Keynote (2006), GRUE (2008), Kinky Kollege (2008, 2009), Shibaricon (2009), Kink Fest (2008, 2009), Spank Fest (2010), Sins Leather (2011), SHINE Empowerment Conference (2011), WAMFT (2011) and the CARAS Fifth Annual Alternative Sexualities Conference (2012). Jasmine also regularly contributes her expertise to various media outlets. She has conducted interviews for WORT, Poly Weekly, Young/Kinky and Good Vibrations as well as various web publications. She has written articles for Sex Workers Magazine, Daily News and Skin Magazine. She is a member of the CARAS BDSM & Therapy Project and a writer for the CARAS newsletter Standard Deviations. Jasmine is a regular book reviewer for Contemporary Sexuality. She was most recently asked to be a contributor to the updated Encyclopedia of Human Sexuality. Jasmine's professional memberships include AAMFT, AASECT, CARAS, NCFS, Polyamory Leadership Network, Good Vibrations - Sex Educators Organization and the Greater Madison LGBT Chamber of Commerce. For more information you can view Jasmine's website and blog:

Workshop 2 : 1:00 p.m.- 4:00 p.m.
Framing Public Schooling’s Approach to Culturally Responsive Education

The demographics of the United States are constantly changing and increasingly diversifying; this indeed includes the population of young children. The percentage of “Hispanics”, for example, has been the fastest growing group of any other racial or ethnic group, growing from 9 percent of the child population in 1980 to 20 percent of the population in 2006 (FICFS, 2007). Regardless of place of origin, racial background, or socioeconomic status, schools are the first and most prominent source of interaction with children. This places a unique challenge for schools and communities around the United States to provide curriculum and educational experiences that are sensitive to such diverse communities, providing the most competent, socially and culturally appropriate environment for the well being and development of all children.

It is imperative that counselors understand school environments and curriculum beyond the visible materials within a classroom, including the less visible curricular structures, the local and national processes and discourses and system-wide interventions seeking to address academic and behavioral needs of students. Information needs to be both accessible and available to all students and families. This presentation will focus on how counselors can engage in culturally responsive practices to include the voices of all students and families. Specifically, we will examine how programs such as RTI and PBIS frame cultural and linguistic diversity and the development of more culturally responsive practices for students and families. We will discuss specific strategies and initiatives that address these issues within two elementary schools.


Esmeralda M. Rodriguez

Esmeralda received her B.A. in Psychology and Social Behavior from the University of California, Irvine, and her M.S. in Counseling Psychology, with an emphasis in School Counseling from the University of Wisconsin, Madison. She currently works as an Elementary School Counselor and is a doctoral candidate in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction at UW-Madison. Her research interests include Critical Race Theory and LatCrit in Education, particularly understanding the social, historical, cultural, political and economic factors that shape the experiences of low-income, immigrant and first generation students, and Students of Color in K-12 education.

Jennifer Schultz

Jennifer has an M.S. in Counseling Psychology from UW-Madison in 2005. Since that time, Jennifer has worked in an elementary school setting in Verona, Wisconsin. In 2009, Jennifer began to diversify the methods of communication and collaboration with ELL families. As part of her work, she created a multifaceted program called T.A.R.E.A. (Teaching and Reaching Every Area) T.A.R.E.A.'s objective is to increase student achievement through community-based school efforts and to decrease obstacles hindering parent involvement. In addition to currently working as a School Counselor, Jennifer is a Licensed Professional Counselor.

Additional Information

3 Continuing Education Units will be offered for each half day workshop participants attend, and
6 Continuing Education Units will be received by those who attend the whole day workshop.


Each camper will be covered by a limited accident insurance policy. The insurance includes primary coverage up to $7,500 and $300 maximum dental insurance. Insurance does not cover pre-existing injuries and is for accidents only. The cost of insurance is included in the registration fee.

Special Notice

The University of Wisconsin-Whitewater is committed to equal opportunity in its educational programs, activities and employment policies, for all persons, regardless of race, color, gender, creed, religion, age, ancestry, national origin, disability, sexual orientation, political affiliation, marital status, Vietnam-era veteran status, parental status and pregnancy.

If you have any disabling condition that requires special accommodations or attention, please advise us well in advance. We will make every effort to accommodate your special needs.

I understand that the University may take photographs and or videos of event participants and activities. I agree that the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater shall be the owner of and may use such photographs and or videos relating to the promotion of future events. I relinquish all rights that I may claim in relation to use of said photographs and/or videos.