Youth at Risk (YAR) Conference | Salem State University Skip to main content

Youth at Risk (YAR) Conference

The 17th Annual Youth at Risk (YAR) conference is the region’s only annual all-day conference for professionals who work with at-risk youth. The event will feature over 20 morning workshops and a variety of afternoon breakout sessions, as well as keynote speakers, program exhibitions and networking opportunities.

2017 Keynote Speakers

Kenneth V. Hardy, PhD

Dr. Kenneth V. Hardy is a professor of family therapy at Drexel University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and is also director of the Eikenberg Institute for Relationships in New York where he maintains a private practice specializing in working with at-risk children and their families. He is the former chair of the Department of Child and Family Studies at Syracuse University in Syracuse, New York. 

Dr. Hardy’s work with children and families has earned him considerable public acclaim including appearances on the Oprah Winfrey Show, 20/20, Dateline NBC and PBS. He was also the featured therapist in "Living Room Wars," a Discovery Health Channel program devoted to providing family therapy to traumatized youth and their families.

Dr. Hardy has provided training and consultation to numerous organizations, agencies and institutions devoted to working with at-risk children and their families. He has also provided training, consultation and supervision to public and private schools throughout the United States and Canada. 

Dr. Hardy is a frequent presenter of conferences on the topics of at-risk youth, trauma and oppression. He has published prolifically and is the co-author of the following books: Minorities and Family Therapy; Teens Who Hurt: Clinical Interventions for Breaking the Cycle of Violence; and Revisioning Family Therapy: Race, Class, and Culture. In addition to his publications, Dr. Hardy is also featured in several videotapes including a documentary devoted to slavery. His videotape “The Psychological Residuals of Slavery” has been well received by both the professional and lay communities for serving as a catalyst to promote conversations about the intersections of race, oppression and trauma.

Susan Cooper

Susan Cooper is a licensed clinical social Worker with a passion for self-care and assisting others in finding and living their most authentic self. She has provided support and guidance for the past 25 years to the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Currently, she leads bereavement groups for local hospice facilities and conducts psychosocial assessments for new patients in psychiatric hospital care. As a consultant to managers, Susan provides trauma support and stress management to employees around the state teaching meditation and other relaxation and self-care techniques.

Who Should Attend

The YAR conference is geared toward individuals working with and caring for youth in a variety of settings—family, community, school, religious, healthcare, human service, recreational and legal. Attendees include social workers, psychologists, youth counselors, family therapists, educators, school adjustment counselors, guidance counselors, community and public health workers, program managers, agency and organization CEO's, police officers, juvenile court personnel, lawyers, and volunteers.


$100.00 per person.
Includes breakfast, lunch, networking opportunities, CEUs, two keynote speakers, and two workshops. 

YAR Brochure     
Salem State North Campus Map

Thank you to our sponsors:

The Peter and Elizabeth C. Tower Foundation

EBSCO Information Services
Lahey Health
Margaret M. Collins Charitable Trust
YAR Endowment Fund of Essex County Community Foundation

Belinda Fund of The Boston Foundation
East Boston Savings Bank
Merrimack College
Salem Five Charitable Foundation

When 4:00pm
Ellison Campus Center, North Campus
1 Meier Drive, Salem, MA 01970
North Campus
Jenney Dale Holland
Back to top