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Friday, November 18, 2016
9:00 a.m.–4:00 p.m.


Thomas Dixon Lovely Ballroom
Ruth S. Harley University Center

The Triumph of Experience: What Psychotherapists Can Learn from a Longitudinal Study of the Last 50 Years of Life

With George Vaillant, M.D.

Special Event

6 CE and 6 NYS OASAS clock hours
50 years of life special event

Vaillant has spent his entire life studying prospectively the lives of hundreds of both rich and poor men in his most famous research at the Harvard University Health Center. His books have focused first on their adaptation to and successful coping with stress (“Adaptation to Life”, 1977), next on their recovery from alcoholism (“The Natural History of Alcoholism”, 1983), then including the lifetime development of women (“The Wisdom of the Ego”, 1996), then to what led to successful mental and physical aging (“Aging Well”, 2002), then to a study of positive emotions and what therapists can learn from Positive Psychology ( “Spiritual Evolution”, 2008) and finally, as the men pass 90, an empirical – not Erikson’s, admittedly brilliant, armchair view – study of adult development from 18 to 90 (“Spiritual Evolution”, 2012).

In 3 two hour sessions Vaillant will focus on the contribution of understanding of adult development, the addictions, Positive Psychology, and involuntary coping mechanisms to psychotherapy. Among other learning objectives, under the motto of: “The follow-up is the great exposer of truth, the rock upon which fine theories are wrecked.”

Vaillant will use this occasion to draw participants to multiple forbidden therapeutic subjects: Freudian defense mechanisms, love and joy and spirituality.  Come learn such valuable life secrets such as love and depression get better after age 70 or that cellulite, like adolescence…sensible people outgrow.   

» View workshop fees and register

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About the Workshop Leader

Dr. Vaillant is a Professor of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School and the Department of Psychiatry, Massachusetts General Hospital From 1970 to 2005 he was Director of the Study of Adult Development at the Harvard University Health Service.  The study is arguably the longest (75 years) prospective psychosocial and medical study of males in the world. In 2000 he became a founding member of Positive Psychology. More recently Vaillant has been interested in positive emotions and their relationship to Positive Psychology.

His published works include Adaptation to Life, 1977, The Natural History of Alcoholism-Revisited, 1995, Aging Well, 2002, Spiritual Evolution, 2008 and Triumphs of Experience, 2012.

This program has been approved for CE credits by the New York State Education Department’s State Board for Social Work. Adelphi University School of Social Work is an approved provider of continuing education for licensed social workers #0032.
New York State Office of the Professions (NYSED) regulations require that participants must be present for the entire approved educational activity in order to receive a certificate for continuing education credits. There is no accommodation in the State regulations for late arrival, late return from lunch or breaks, or early departure. At present, there is no procedure for granting partial credit for approved continuing education events. If there are any changes in State regulation, this policy will updated accordingly.  
Coronavirus Update: As New York is on a "pause" for social distancing purposes, all in-person events for the next several weeks have been converted to online, postponed or canceled. Please check this page as information will be updated as possible—and call ahead before any upcoming in-person events until further notice. Thanks. 

For further information, please contact:

Renee Rawcliffe, LMSW
Director, Continuing Education and Professional Development
Social Work Building, Room 235
p – 516-877-4339
e –

Joanna Suppa, LCSW-R
Coordinator of Continuing Education and Professional Development
p – 516.877.3216
e –