As an experienced teacher, school counselor, and play therapist, Jen Alexander believes that we can make a big difference with kids – one relationship at a time, which is why she is a passionate leader in the movement to build trauma-sensitive schools. Jen loves helping others help kids and has done so in schools, as a volunteer for the Attachment & Trauma Network (ATN), and when facilitating her own trainings for educators. Her new book Building Trauma-Sensitive Schools: Your Guide to Creating Safe, Supportive Learning Environments for All Students is now available.
Most know Jen as Ms. Jen (grown-ups included). Let’s give a collective thanks to the 1970s most popular female name for several years running for that. When there are many Jennifers and Jens in every circle of your life, one figures out a way to be specific.
Ms. Jen is an educator with more than 15 years of experience helping youth (some traumatized, some not) as a former special education teacher and current school counselor in Iowa. Ms. Jen is also a mother, author, and someone who appreciates all things creative.
Specifically, Ms. Jen trains educators on the “what works” and “why” when it comes to building trauma-sensitive schools. She brings her experience as a parent, former special education teacher, current school counselor, and trauma expert together, resulting in a unique ability to connect with both educators, other helpers, and parents. Ms. Jen also has a witty sense of humor, making her a popular presenter.
Jen holds degrees in psychology and special education teaching as well as a master’s degree in professional school counseling from the University of Northern Iowa. She is a nationally certified counselor and registered school-based play therapist. Ms. Jen enjoys writing along with reading, gardening, and swimming as well as spending time with loved ones, friends, and her cocker spaniel Macy.