Cedar Crest College will offer Art Therapy master's program

Author: , Reporter, WLewis@wfmz.com
Published: Apr 09 2013 08:00:00 PM EDT   Updated On: Apr 10 2013 06:48:59 PM EDT
ALLENTOWN, Pa. -

Sometimes art therapy is the best therapy for those who have suffered traumatic situations.

Now students who want to carve out a career in the rapidly-growing field have a new opportunity in Allentown.

There will soon be an art studio filled with art therapy students earning a master's degree at Cedar Crest College in Allentown.

"It's about 15 years in the making," said Rebecca Arnold, director of art therapy for the college.

In 2011, Cedar Crest started an undergraduate program.

Now there are 34 students studying art therapy including junior, Francis Soto.

"Originally I wanted to do special ed, but that kind of changed because I felt like I wanted to get more emotional with the students," said Soto.

Soto says she's become more interested in the field since living with her uncle, a veteran who served in Iraq and Afghanistan.

"I just see how much he goes through with the PTSD and I just want to help him," added Soto.

"Art therapy is a mental health profession," said Arnold." "People who are trained art therapist can provide art therapy services."

Therapy students say it's not about the final product. It's more about the process.

Drawings can show a very emotional scene or they can just show how you're feeling at the moment.

"When you expose them to it and seeing them grow with it and really take their own spin on it I think that is the most amazing and interesting thing," said Angelique Calladonato, a senior, majoring in art therapy.

Students say they can't wait until the new studio opens this fall.

"It shows that the field and the world is ready and willing to accept it," said Calladonato.

The staff will be hosting an open house in the studio on April 30th.