April 18, 2020
I have the privilege to direct one of the most robust university-based BCIA-accredited neurofeedback programs in the country, which has not only trained almost 300 master and doctoral level counseling students in neurofeedback, but is contributing to the field by hosting annual conferences, workshops, and a growing body of research. The University of Texas at San Antonio Counseling Department in the College of Human Development and Education has been a generous supporter of this program through funds, curriculum integration, and faculty enthusiasm–through the vision and leadership of our department chair, Dr. Thelma Duffey. My colleague, Dr. Devon Romero, Assistant Professor, has significantly raised the bar in our research with her expertise, wisdom, and energy.
For the past several weeks the COVID-19 pandemic has deeply affected this program that I have put my heart and soul into over the past nine years. The leadership of the university has proactively and wisely responded to the crisis by putting all coursework online through the summer term and closing the campus, which includes the on-campus Sarabia Family Counseling Center, which is our home wherein we have provided training of students and professionals in the locale and pro bono treatment to hundreds of residents of our community.
My Introduction to Neurofeedback course content is now taught online, without hands on experiential in-class labs as done previously. Our advanced sections, however, are no longer able to meet as a student group and provide assessments and treatment sessions to our clients. These committed students are currently not able to continue their supervised neurofeedback hours for either BCIA certification or academically–through practicum and internships.
The Neurofeedback Society of UTSA, our enthusiastic and amazing student organization—under the leadership of doctoral student Claire Gregory—is continuing with their annual QEEG workshops albeit in an online format, and plans are progressing toward their annual neurofeedback conference in the fall.
Doctoral students, whose dissertation plans involve primary research on neurofeedback, are being affected by this current crisis.
Our current grant-funded research project on treating court-referred misdemeanor domestic violence defendants with PTSD, under Dr. Romero’s direction, has come to a stop due to closures of both the campus and courts.
My appeal to you is this: help us re-create this program as a remote neurofeedback model.
This is an unprecedented crisis which requires a creative response. With stretched university budgets, we need the support of our friends in order to procure additional equipment and software, and to re-tool our current systems. Specifically, in order to achieve an online and remote parity with our on-campus curriculum, a number of 2-4 channel systems are needed for client/subject treatment and online class instruction. Currently, we use BioExplorer software with Atlantis, QWiz, and Neurobit Optima+ amplifiers.
Thanks for your thoughtful consideration of donating equipment, software or funds toward our mission. Feel free to reply to at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Mark S. Jones, DMin, LPC, LMFT, BCN, QEEGD
Adjunct Professor, Director of Neurofeedback Program
University of Texas at San Antonio
Department of Counseling
501 Cesar Chavez Blvd.
Durango Building 3.304E
San Antonio, TX 78207