Mentor Training Director
Jennifer Beckham found her passion for working with children at Sharpe Community Center in Joliet. She worked in their after-school program while simultaneously attending Lewis University in 2000. It was there that she realized she enjoyed working with children and that doing so was her calling. She graduated in 2004 with her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and Human Resource Management.
Her first job after graduation was as a Crisis Counselor for a program called SASS. She provided therapy and crisis intervention for children who were homicidal and suicidal. While working in SASS, she determined that she wanted to be better equipped to support the needs of the children. So, she decided to go back to school to get her Master in Social Work as a part-time student at Aurora University. She worked full time, went to school at night, and completed her internship on the weekends all while being a single mom. She worked diligently to finish her master’s program and completed her Master in Social Work in 2011 with a 3.8 GPA.
At the time she received her master’s degree, she was also working at S.E.A.L. South therapeutic day school and has now worked there for 11 years. In 2012, she was promoted to a Supervisor at S.E.A.L. South where she helps students learn appropriate ways to manage their behaviors by creating programming to support the needs of the students. In addition to supervising/training a staff of 27 de-escalation techniques, rapport building strategies, and crisis intervention, she also supports the day-to-day function of the school. Jennifer worked as a Child and Family Therapist at Ada S. McKinley. She currently works as a school social worker. She has spent over 18 years learning, adapting, and implementing programs that support positive behavior and working to understand the needs of our youth today. Her passion is helping children learn how to push past their current situation and
find their resilience.