Dr. Andrea Bloomgarden is Clinical Assistant Professor and Practicum Coordinator in the Department of Psychology. She has been in Philadelphia since 1984, when she began her doctoral work in the Clinical Psychology program at the University of Pennsylvania. She received her Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania in 1991. She has been practicing as a licensed psychologist in Pennsylvania since 1993 and maintains a private practice in Center City, Philadelphia specializing in eating disorders, trauma, personality disorders, depression and anxiety.
Dr. Bloomgarden’s interests have evolved through her clinical experiences. From 1994-2002, as the Director of Outpatient Services at the Renfrew Center she became immersed in work with an eating disordered clientele. Her interest in the therapeutic alliance, boundaries and therapist self-disclosure was piqued because of the frequency with which these issues raised complex ethical dilemmas during her work at Renfrew. This stirred her to initiate various exploratory research projects at Renfrew in conjunction with Rosemary Mennuti, Ed.D., NCSP; Ellen Cohen, MSS, LCSW; Fran Gerstein, MSW, LCSW; and Carol Moss, MSS, LCSW focusing on therapeutically appropriate use of therapist self-disclosure, therapist self-care and self-awareness of therapists’ own issues around food and body image. She presented at various professional conferences and published articles on these topics. She continues to take great interest in these topics, encouraging their exploration in courses she teaches at PCOM.
In her efforts to expand her treatment repertoire when working with eating disordered clients, she studied EMDR and developed a research project examining its usefulness in the treatment of body image disturbance. She was the Principal Investigator of the study and presented the findings at various professional conferences with her co-investigator Rachel Calogero, MS. Through her study of EMDR, she was introduced to Dialectical Behavior Therapy and studied it for its application to eating disordered clients. She continues to utilize that approach and has been participating in a bimonthly DBT Consultation Team meeting with her colleagues since 1999. Her work with DBT and EMDR led to an interest in mindfulness meditation and its usefulness as a component of psychotherapy.
Prior to her work at Renfrew, during her Internship at Napa State Hospital, she treated clients who had been participants in violent crimes: homicide, sex offenses and gang-related crimes. She continues to take interest in forensic issues even though her current work is no longer closely connected to these topics.
Personally and professionally, Dr. Bloomgarden is passionate about the value of appreciating multicultural diversity in our clinical work. She believes that we are personally enriched when we can embrace difference, enjoying the uniqueness of people who are different than ourselves. She hopes to promote increased understanding and fairness in treatment for people of all races, ethnicities, classes, sexual orientations, gender orientations and other forms of cultural difference. Professionally, she co-facilitated breakfasts and luncheons to celebrate diversity at the Annual Renfrew Foundation Conference for many years, and at PCOM, she organized a Multicultural committee of students to facilitate ongoing discussion about these issues. In her classes, whenever possible, she tries to create safety for open, respectful discussion of difference, to facilitate a deeper understanding of different perspectives.
Mennuti, R. & Bloomgarden, A. (manuscript in preparation). Female adolescents with eating disorders: A cognitive behavioral approach, In R. Mennuti, A. Freeman, & R. W. Christner (Eds.), Cognitive behavioral interventions in educational settings. New York: Routledge.
Bloomgarden, A. (2004) Dialectical Behavior Therapy, in A. Freeman, M.H. Stone & D. Martin (Eds.), Comparative Psychological Treatment of the Patient with Borderline Personality Disorder. NY: Springer Publishing.
Ambrose, C. & Bloomgarden, A. (2004) Treatment for the False Self: Connecting with Others, Connecting with Self. The Renfrew Center Working Papers. Volume 2, Spring.
Bloomgarden, A., Mennuti, R. and Cohen, E. (2003) Therapist self-disclosure: Implications for the therapeutic connection. The Renfrew Center Working Papers, Volume 1, Fall.
Bloomgarden, A., Gerstein, F. and Moss, C. (2003) “A Recovered Enough Clinician?”, Eating Disorders: The Journal of Treatment & Prevention, 11, 163-16.
Bloomgarden, A. & Calogero, R. (2003) The Use of EMDR in the Treatment of Body Image disturbance, The Renfrew Perspective: A Professional Journal of The Renfrew Center Foundation.
Bloomgarden, A. (2000). Self-Disclosure: Is it Worth the Risk? The Renfrew Perspective: A Professional Journal of The Renfrew Center Foundation, 5, 8-9.
Bloomgarden, A. (2000). Therapist’s self-disclosure and genuine caring: Where do they belong in the therapeutic relationship? Eating Disorders: The Journal of Treatment & Prevention, 8, 347-352.
Bloomgarden, A. & Langone, M. (1984). Preventative education on cultism for high school students: A comparison of different programs’ effects on potential vulnerability to cults. Cultic Studies Journal, 1, 167-177.
Bloomgarden, A. & Brooks, G. (2002) Hosted the“Diversity Luncheon” at the Twelfth Annual Renfrew Center Foundation Conference. Discussions were held to sensitize participants to issues of diversity and respectful discussion of difference. Philadelphia, PA.
Bloomgarden, A. (2002). Roundtable Discussion of Therapist Self-Disclosure at the Washington Society for the Study of Eating Disorders and Obesity(WSSEDO), Washington, D.C.
Bloomgarden, A. & Calogero, R. (2002) EMDR in the Treatment of Body Image in an Inpatient Eating Disorder Population. Presented at the EMDRIA Annual Conference Poster Paper Session, Coronado, CA.
Bloomgarden, A.(2001). “Self-Disclosure in the Treatment of Adolescents”presented at the Eleventh Annual Renfrew Center Foundation Conference. Philadelphia, PA.
Bloomgarden, A., Stiver, I., Ehrenbach, D. & Rabinor, J. (1999) Keynote Speaker on a panel entitled "Expanding Therapeutic Boundaries: Taking Risks for Change" at the Ninth Annual Renfrew Center Foundation Conference, Philadelphia, PA.
Bloomgarden, A., Gerstein, F. & Moss, C. (1999) "We Are Family: Understanding Feminist Workplace Dynamics and Change in a Family Therapy Framework" at the Ninth Annual Renfrew Center Foundation Conference, Philadelphia, PA.
Bloomgarden, A., Mennuti, R., Cohen, E. & Dodd, S. (1999) “To Disclose or Not to Disclose: The Therapist’s Dilemma” at the 24th Annual Association of Women in Psychology Conference. Providence, RI.
Bloomgarden, A., Gerstein, F. & Moss, C. (1999) “Our Patients, Our Selves: Breaking a Culture of Silence in the Workplace” to Renfrew staff for CEU credits for professional development.