Professor earns national Play Therapy recognition

10/16/2009 | By: Staff Report  |

Jill Packman, an associate professor in counseling and educational psychology in the University’s College of Education, recently helped the Nevada Association for Play Therapy earn national recognition by the Association for Play Therapy (APT).

The Nevada Association for Play Therapy was presented a 2009 Gold Branch Award by the APT on Oct. 11 during the organization’s annual conference in Atlanta, Ga. Nevada is one of 44 branches chartered by the APT in the U.S.

The Gold Branch Award recognizes branch performance during the past year that significantly exceeds minimal charter criteria that includes growing membership, communicating with members, providing play therapy continuing education workshops to mental health professionals, and publicly promoting the value of play therapy. Packman, a licensed marriage and family therapist, registered play therapist-supervisor and president of the Nevada association, assured that the Nevada branch satisfied such criteria.

Play therapy is a form of mental health counseling by which licensed mental health professionals incorporate the use of play when developmentally appropriate to better communicate with and help clients achieve optimal mental health. It is particularly effective with children because, just as adults use words to communicate ideas and feelings, children use play.

APT is a national professional society formed in 1982 to advance the field of play therapy. It sponsors research, training, and credentialing programs to assist the professional development of its nearly 6,000 member psychologists, social workers, counselors, and marriage and family therapists in 25 nations. Additional information is available at


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