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Massage Today
March, 2005, Vol. 05, Issue 03

Council of Schools Conference Hits the Beach

By Editorial Staff

While much of the country was suffering the wrath of Mother Nature under snow, rain, and single-digit temperatures, those in attendance at the 2005 American Massage Therapy Association (AMTA) Council of Schools Leadership Conference and Annual Meeting, Jan.

20-22, 2005, were enjoying spring-like Southern California weather in beautiful Newport Beach. This year's event focused on "Excellence in Education," which was also the topic addressed by keynote speaker George Kousaleos, a leader in the massage community and founder of the CORE Institute in Tallahassee, Fla.

Newport Beach bay with sailboats. - Copyright – Stock Photo / Register Mark Photo courtesy of the Newport Beach Conference and Visitors Bureau. On opening day, representatives from the AMTA, National Certification Board of Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork (NCBTMB), Massage Therapy Foundation, and Commission on Massage Therapy Accreditation (COMTA) gave 15-minute presentations updating members on the latest events in their respective organizations. AMTA President Laurel Freeman discussed the rapid growth of the massage profession and noted several of AMTA's goals this year and beyond, including working to build relationships within both the massage profession and health care community at large, among other things.

Winona Bontrager, Liz Lucas, Laurel Freeman, John Balletto, Judy Dean, Ellen Bateman and John Goss. - Copyright – Stock Photo / Register Mark Panel presenters at the COS conference included (l to r): COS President Winona Bontrager; AMTA Executive Director Liz Lucas; AMTA President Laurel Freeman; Massage Therapy Foundation President John Balletto; NCBTMB Chair Judy Dean; COMTA Executive Director Ellen Bateman; and COMTA Chair/Chief Executive Officer John Goss. Educational workshops during the conference included "Branding, Marketing and Lead Management for Massage Schools" by Michael J. Cooney; "Practical Strategic Planning for Schools Owners and Directors" by Paul Rerucha; and "Orthopedic Assessment: Enhancing Students' Critical Thinking Skills" by Whitney Lowe. Facilitated discussion groups covered "Keeping the Spirit in Mind, Body, Spirit," "School Issues," and "Tracking the Elusive Graduate."

During the closing dinner, Massage Today columnist Ruth Werner of Myotherapy College of Utah, was announced as this year's recipient of the 2005 Jerome Perlinski Teacher of the Year Award for exceptional teaching and her commitment to maintaining high standards of massage therapy education. Jerome Perlinski, though not a massage therapist, was a strong advocate of massage therapy and used his expertise as an educator to help raise training standards, improve teaching methods, and educate massage practitioners about the importance of ethical and professional behavior. The award will be presented to Ms. Werner during the COS Teachers Conference, Aug. 11-14, 2005, in Secaucus, N.J.

For more information about the AMTA Council of Schools, visit www.amtamassage.org.

 

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