About Us

Trauma Response Institute Logo - Photo of the earth with TRI written on it

Guiding Principles 

Collaborative

In all its activities, the institute seeks to collaborate with service organizations, government agencies, schools, faith communities and traumatology experts from a variety of professions committed to disaster response.

Ecosystemic

The ecosystemic orientation of the Institute embraces a holistic approach to understanding human experience and functioning. Educational programs focusing on a biological, psychological, social, cultural and spiritual inquiry into the impact of traumatic events set the stage for the application of a context-sensitive multi-modal response based on the needs identified by the affected community.

Resiliency

The guiding feature of the Institute is its embrace of resiliency of individuals and communities to survive and thrive in the face of adversity. All activities of the Trauma Response Institute are grounded in the belief that each community impacted by a traumatic event has the capacity to find hope, purpose, and meaning as it rebuilds itself, with our services intending to facilitate this process of recovery.

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Frequently Asked Questions

1. How do I get a Trauma Response Certificate?

2. How long are the classes?

3. Where are the classes located?

4. How do I apply or register for a Trauma Response class?

5. Can I attend a Trauma Response class if I’m not getting the certificate?

6. Do I have to be in one of the counseling programs to take a Trauma Response class?

7. Do I have to be enrolled in a Trauma Response class to volunteer for Trauma Response opportunities and events?

8. Why is trauma-informed counseling training important?

1. How do I get a Trauma Response Certificate?

Specialized curriculum and research opportunities are available in a full certificate program. Professionals with a completed graduate degree in the mental health, education, medical or ministerial fields are eligible for the post-graduate certificate program. The program is also open to current graduate students.

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2. How long are the classes?

Each TRI course is 1-semester unit, consisting of 15 hours of class time. Most courses are hybrid, meaning a portion of the class time occurs online and a portion occurs in-person and on campus, in addition to graded activities. Some courses for school professionals are offered exclusively online.

3. Where are the classes located?

All in-person class time activities occur on the Portland Center (Tigard) campus.

4. How do I apply or register for a Trauma Response class?

Professionals from the community with a qualifying graduate degree are invited to take individual courses in Trauma Response Services for either graduate credit or continuing education (CE) credit. Professionals, or current graduate students, with a graduate degree in the mental health, education, medical or ministerial fields are eligible to take individual courses.

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5. Can I attend a Trauma Response class if I’m not getting the certificate?

Yes.  Depending on space availability, qualified student registrants may enroll in the following Trauma Response (TRMA) courses, offered on a yearly or biyearly basis:

  • TRMA 500: Introduction to Traumatology and Trauma-Informed Care
  • TRMA 501: Best Practices in Trauma-Informed Care
  • TRMA 502: Interpersonal Neurobiology of Trauma
  • TRMA 503: Grief and Loss Across the Lifespan
  • TRMA 541: Race and Trauma
  • TRMA 542: Developing a Professional Online Identity
  • TRMA 543: Trauma-Informed Emotion Focused Therapy
  • TRMA 544: Trauma-Informed Treatment with Adult Survivors of Sexual Abuse
  • TRMA 560: Trauma-Informed Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Applications

Learn more about taking classes for either graduate credit or continuing education

6. Do I have to be in one of the counseling programs to take a Trauma Response class?

No. All registrants either enrolled in a qualifying graduate degree program or with an earned graduate degree in a qualifying profession may enroll. Professionals, or current graduate students, with a graduate degree in the mental health, education, medical or ministerial fields are eligible to take individual courses.

7. Do I have to be enrolled in a Trauma Response class to volunteer for Trauma Response opportunities and events?

The TRI sponsors a variety of activities and events each year designed for all university community members to participate. A few activities are restricted to TRI students due to the nature of the event and the knowledge level and skills expected of the volunteer.

8. Why is trauma-informed counseling training important?

Every mental health professional works with individuals and relationship systems (e.g. couples, families) whose lives have been touched by stress, grief, and trauma. So in many ways, all counselors and therapists are trauma counselors. 

But over the years, research has helped us understand more specifically how trauma impacts us neurologically, which impacts how we think, feel, and physically react. Typical or common therapeutic interventions do not always “fit” what is needed when a person is experiencing specific types of stress and trauma.

So, the courses in the TRI program teach professionals what trauma-informed practice actually means. It is the integration of advancements in neurobiology and attachment theory, combined with best-practice data on what is most effective to help persons overwhelmed by particular types of stress and trauma. We think this body of knowledge and skills is imperative in addition to the basics of most mental health degree programs.