Dissertation Title:

Psychological Impact on Adult Women Who Attended a Therapeutic Boarding School


Elissa Hurand

Date, Time & Place:

July 21, 2021 at 4:00 pm


Adolescents are sent to therapeutic boarding school as an intervention for various behaviors that illicit concern from parents with the primary focus being removal from their immediate environment and forced to comply to new rules and expectations to correct behavior. Using Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis, the experiences of six women were explored to understand the psychological impact of attending therapeutic boarding school during adolescence. The findings are discussed in terms of how their lives were impacted then and now with themes including living in fear, labeling and diagnoses, relationship to parents, resilience and strength, healing journey and the final message about their experience. The results of this study will provide insight for clinicians in the mental health field, families in crisis with adolescents and researchers in gaining a deeper understanding of the psychological impacts of sending youth away to therapeutic boarding school and the lasting impacts into adulthood.

  • Program/Track/Year: Clinical Psychology, A, 2013
  • Chair: Dr. Avedis Panajian
  • Reader: Dr. Christine Lewis
  • External Reader: Dr. Giovanni Aponte
  • Keywords: Therapeutic Boarding School, Adolescence, Female Adolescence, Psychological Impact, Intervention, Fear, PTSD, Crisis, Resilience