CPPNJ - The Center for Psychoanalysis and Psychotherapy of New Jersey

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Graduation and End of Year Celebration


Contributed by: Gail Kleinman

Sunday, June 5 marked the CPPNJ’s second Annual Graduation and End of Year Celebration at the Hamilton Park Hotel in Madison New Jersey. Two outstanding graduates of the Program in Psychoanalysis, Janet Hoffer, and Mary Lantz were honored. And it was good, very good. Janet and Mary had begun as candidates at CCAPS and IPPNJ respectively, but now they were becoming colleagues and faculty members at CCPNJ.

After some informal chatting and drinking, we entered the lovely dining room where Susan Masluk, representing the Events Committee, took the podium and warmly welcomed us all to this event. Tom Johnson, Dean of Faculty introduced our new faculty members, Maureen Gallagher and Nancy Hicks. We are proud to have these highly respected psychologists joining us. Both work with couples and individuals.

Channeling Theodor Seuss Geisel or simply displaying her Dr. Freud and Dr. Seuss self- states, Michelle Bauer paid tribute to the new graduates. Seth Warren, our Director of CPPNJ, at the helm for a full year now and Carolyn Hillman, Director of Training presented the Certificates in Psychoanalysis. Each paid tribute, not only to the graduates but to us all for our individual and group process of letting go of old identities enough to paradoxically hold on to them. This makes space for the new and integrating them into the whole. Rather than being depleted by loss, with ruptures repaired, we seem to be growing in shared purpose and creativity.

Our two successful graduates each shared their journeys and their thanks with the family, friends, colleagues and supervisors who were present for them. It should be noted that each has already taken on major leadership roles at CPPNJ already. Janet has been the Co-Chair of the Candidates Organization and Mary Lantz is Editor –in- chief of both the Website and the E-Newsletter.

Janet Hoffer spoke first. Janet alerted us to the fact that each of her three sons, all present had a major graduation last year. This was her special night. With wit, humility and gentle, personal humor Janet shared the highlights of her training and how each supervisor and her analyst and Final Case Committee specifically contributed in very special ways to her growth and development as a professional psychoanalyst and as a person. Janet shared her acceptance and trepidation at becoming a trailblazer, being the first CAPPS candidate to take a course with IPPNJ candidates and instructor. This courage led not only to a deeper level of self-knowledge and confidence based on courage but the awareness of her peers, that she is a leader.

Eric Sherman, who had been her teacher as well as her supervisor for the writing of her final paper reflected on his experience working with Janet, noticing her individual strengths and challenges as well as his joy in her achievement. Ronnie Bearison, the teacher/supervisor originally from the other side (IPPNJ) reflected on Janet’s passion for learning and making use of it.

Mary Lantz followed using a fine narrative style, not surprising from an editor –ours. The focus was family and community; those with whom she has lived, and this analytic community which has nurtured her development. She described how her whole life, including her first born status, Catholic education, analysis and psychoanalytic training have led her to this new career which she loves. She underscored the three most important things to her that make a good analyst or therapist. They are authenticity, being fully present to provide a secure base, and awareness of the part you yourself play in the relationship.

Mary too thanked her teachers, supervisors and analyst. She selected faculty member Laura Arrue to speak on her behalf. Laura had been a friend and mentor prior to becoming a colleague. She warmly shared aspects of Mary’s character and relationships that have led to her success. Tom Johnson, supervisor and teacher with his characteristic humor combined with keen intelligence, extolled Mary’s virtues as he has participated in her professional development.

Raffle winners were announced. Bill Lum won first prize, Rose Oosting won second and Natalie Brown won the third prize.

Dessert was served.

Seth Warren, Director graciously closed the evening congratulating, new faculty, graduates and raffle winners. Thanks were given to the Events Committee, which would welcome more members and to Cathy Van Voorhees, our administrator who helps keep us on track in many ways. We were encouraged to stay or get involved and to pass the word on to other professionals about the value of becoming part of the CPPNJ community as a candidate or faculty member.