Mina worked with a student in my 3K class of 14 students, 1 teacher and 1 assistant over eight months during the 2018-19 school year for two days a week. Mina’s calming, cheerful, and knowledgeable presence were always an asset to the class. Her targeted student improved tremendously, demonstrating greater ease and comfort in the classroom generally, improved self-regulation, and more and richer verbal and social interactions with peers and teachers. Furthermore, the other 13 students in the class also adored her and benefited from her expertise; she worked in small groups with them and also read to the class and gave brief lessons during whole group time when requested.
Mina shared her knowledge and insight with myself and my assistant and we were grateful. She has a range of experience and professional expertise that we did not, and was able to offer and implement suggestions and techniques that worked and benefited everyone in a class with several traumatized children.
Mina cultivated and maintained professional, affectionate, and beneficial relationships with all the children and staff. We were so glad to have her and I hope to work with her again. Please feel free to contact me for further information.
May 12, 2020
We had the immense pleasure of having Mina Roustayi as a learning facilitator for one of EdTherapy NYC’s monthly study group meetings. At EdTherapy NYC, we focus on high quality learning opportunities for our members, and Mina certainly exceeded our expectations. Her work on “The Nerve to Learn,” based on Dr. Stephen Porges’s Polyvagal Theory and her years of research, experience and expertise on the subject of trauma and learning was immensely useful for our members who have backgrounds across the fields of Educational Therapy, Neuropsychology, Psychology, Occupational Therapy, Speech/ Language Pathology and more. The ability to present such important and informative research in a way that strengthens our ability to work together as allied professionals to better serve our clients, regardless of age, is at the core of our mission as a professional learning community. Mina’s knowledge and warmth contributed to a positive learning environment, and everyone walked away with a more nuanced understanding of the complex connections between the learning process, the nervous system, and the brain. We highly recommend Mina as a presenter and a practitioner, and encourage the sharing of knowledge that will contribute to the greater good for those in our field and for the clients we serve.
My name is Vandana Chaudhry, and I am an Associate professor of Social Work and disability Studies at the college of Staten Island, City University of New York. I had the opportunity to invite Dr. Mina Roustayi to our university as a key note speaker and guest lecturer. Based on her engaging and informative presentations, I recommend Dr. Mina Roustayi as a lecturer and workshop facilitator.
Dr. Roustayi was one of the speakers I had invited to speak on mental health and neurodiversity in two of my classes, one for a Graduate-level course in the Social Work Department, and another one for an Undergraduate-level course in interdisciplinary Disability Studies miner program at our college in 2019.
I intended to expose my students to humanistic healing modalities for different mental health issues in neurodiverse populations, such as autism, developmental delays, and intellectual disabilities among others. The students responded to Dr. Roustayi’s presentations with great enthusiasm and immense curiosity. Her lecture on “Optimizing Learning: Cultivating Rainbow Brains” was an eye-opener for students in both groups, since none had considered the neurobiological roots of behavior and performance and how the effects of trauma can affect individuals throughout their lives. She also offered experiential mindful strategies that the students could include in their toolkits.
The graduate students found her lecture a game changer in their understanding of the unconscious, neurological driven and learning about trauma-informed best practices. Students reported that her lecture provided a better understanding of behavior based on the brain and Autonomic Nervous System, and trauma informed strategies to help their clients. They realized that they could shift from feeling frustrated and often blaming their clients for behavior that apparently was mostly outside their control to being curious as to how to support their nervous system feel safe. The training also helped them learn to observe their own emotional and physiological regulation, recognize their tendency to be judgmental, and not to take their client’s behaviors as personal.
Undergraduate students felt they learned a lot and some were excited to pursue trauma informed strategies. Impressed by Dr. Roustayi’s workshop, students were motivated to learn about the field of mental health at large, and her therapeutic approaches in particular. Her pedagogical approach was innovative, lively and engaging, and integrated multiple modalities of learning.
Dr. Roustayi’s years of experience in the field, interdisciplinary approaches, and cutting edge knowledge coupled with her respectful and compassionate orientation truly distinguishes her as a leader in her field. A well rounded therapist, she embodies ethics and values of a humanistic professional. As a social work professor with years of experience in human service systems, I recognize the transformative potential of Dr. Roustayi’s healing modalities, and the important contribution her work makes to the field.