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Impact Maker: Michelle Altman, Outpatient Behavioral Health Therapist

Impact Maker: Michelle Altman, Outpatient Behavioral Health Therapist
Meet Michelle Altman, one of our team members making an impact through our behavioral health services. With pediatric mental health as her specialty, Michelle enjoys working with families and meeting clients “where they are” to help both children and caregivers navigate life’s challenges.

Whether you’re looking for behavioral health services that can best support your child and family or are interested in starting a new career where you can make an impact, we want to hear from you. Learn more about our behavioral health services or view our career opportunities today.

Michelle Altman, LCSW
Outpatient Behavioral Health Therapist

When you think of The Children’s Institute, what comes to your mind?
"First, I primarily think of the size of our agency and the wide net of services we offer. When I first visited the Squirrel Hill campus, I was amazed at the size of the facility taking a whole city block. It’s wonderful to work in a place where families can get all of their appointments in one location. Integrated physical and mental health care is path to holistic care and I’m happy to work at an organization where this is possible."

How does being a part of The Children's Institute's mission make you feel?
"Being a part of our mission makes me feel enthusiastic to serve the kids and families in Southwestern PA. The families are the best part of working here. Early on, I noted to my spouse that The Children's Institute was the first place I’ve worked where I received more 'thank you's' and words of gratitude from clients than elsewhere. I think this speaks to how appreciative and responsive our families are for the services we provide."

What inspires you?
"Professionally, seeing the strength of our families every day keeps me motivated to do this work. Psychotherapy is a place where being 'brave' means facing vulnerability, no matter how scary it may be. I love helping families achieve their 'Life Worth Living' goals and dreams. I am also passionate about providing evidence-based care in Spanish as a Latinx, bilingual therapist."

What is your most memorable, positive on-the-job experience?
"Earlier this year I had the opportunity to start a caregiver 4-week psychoeducation group called 'Helping Kids with Big Emotions.' This group was centered on helping caregivers navigate their child’s emotion dyregulation. The feedback and support for this group has been incredible, so much so that we continue to offer the 4-week group rotationally and have created a 'graduate' ongoing support group for past participants."

'Fun' is one of our core values. What does your team do to make every day more fun?
"I think the Behavioral Health team is known to use humor quite a bit in our work with each other (laughter is the best medicine!). We love to send each other memes, TikTok videos, or anything else to make each other laugh."

What is your favorite part of your job?
"My coworkers. I have never worked in a place where I developed real friendships with my team; not just 'colleagues.' We text and hang out with each other outside of work all the time!"

Why would you encourage parents to look into The Children's Institute for their child?
"If you are looking for evidence-based care centered on validating your child’s experience and meeting them where they are, The Children's Institute might be the right fit! I always say finding a therapist is like trying on a pair of shoes or test-driving a car - we have different types of therapists and clinical orientations on our team that could suit the style you’re looking for!"

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