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An Introduction to the Science and Skills of Wellbeing - Recorded

Recorded July 19, 2023


Autism service professionals are the backbone of our system of care; championing their well-being is imperative to assuring autistic individuals achieve a high-quality life. Burnout and stress are rampant in the social service professions resulting in a workforce recruitment and retention crisis (Medicaid, 2021). 

The World Health Organization’s recent amendment to the International Classification of Diseases included Burnout as a classification (WHO, 2019); employee well-being has become a primary concern to society. PERMA is a model of well-being that has been implemented across many social service professions (Nuemeirier, 2017; Bazargan-Hajazi, 2021). The intentional application of the science and skills of PERMA can elevate the well-being of professionals, resulting in greater opportunity for effective intervention delivered by those professionals. Individuals being served by behavior analysts have a right to effective treatment (ABAI, 1999). A workforce prepared to serve is required for the delivery of effective treatment. In addition, there is a paucity of research in the assessment of mood in behavior analytic research addressing the needs of autistic individuals themselves (Ramey et al, 2022). PERMA+ may have applications in the autistic population.

This session will explore the PERMA theory of well-being and the application of this theory to autism services and supports. Some initial data will be shared from ongoing feasibility work with autism service providers.


Patricia Wright  

Dr. Patricia Wright’s commitment to ensuring all individuals with autism have access to effective services and supports has guided her work for more than 30 years, from her earliest responsibilities as a special educator, to state and national-level program management, her advocacy includes the management in the design of a statewide system of support for children with autism for the state of Hawaii, several years as the National Director of Autism Services for Easter Seals, her industry positions leveraging technology, and her current role at Proof Positive spreading the science and skills of happiness.

Patricia has held advisory roles for a number of professional associations and advocacy groups, including the Organization for Autism Research's Scientific Council, the Executive Committee for the Friends of the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, Board of Directors for the Association of Professional Behavior Analysts and the Autism Society Panel of Professional Advisors. She has been asked to provide expert testimony at Congressional Hearings and is a frequent contributor in the media, raising awareness of effective intervention for those living with disabilities.

Patricia completed her PhD and Master of Public Health from the University of Hawaii. Her research focuses on the delivery of evidence-based interventions in community-based settings and healthcare access for people with disabilities.

Katie Curran, MAPP

Katie’s commitment to enhancing the wellbeing of individuals in an effort to build thriving communities has guided her career. Whether she is working to improve special education, train resilience skills to soldiers in the United States Military, boost engagement alongside corporate leaders, or improve the performance of professional athletes, she has one goal - cultivate growth through joy and connection. In 2008, Katie founded Proof Positive, originally a professional consulting firm focused on improving the wellbeing, resilience, and performance of individuals, families, schools, and organizations. In 2021, Proof Positive evolved to become a national nonprofit whose mission is to spread the science and skills of happiness.

Katie has over 20 years of clinical experience working with individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders. She held tenure at three of the world’s leading behavioral institutions (i.e., Sheppard Pratt Mental Health Institute, Kennedy Krieger Institute, and Princeton Child Development Institute). She’s widely recognized as a creative force when it comes to autism intervention, developing strategies and tools that fuse Positive Psychology with Applied Behavior Analysis to improve wellbeing. Katie has authored articles on the topics of Goals Setting, Hope Theory, and Learned Happiness. She has served on numerous advisory boards, is a Global Representative at the International Positive Education Network, was a founding board member at The Global Autism Project, and holds a seat on the MAPP Alumni Board at U of Penn.

Katie holds a Masters of Applied Positive Psychology (MAPP) from the University of Pennsylvania and a Bachelors of Psychology from Towson University. Her unique use of and passion for both the evidence-based findings of positive psychology and principles of behavior allows her to draw out the best in all she works with.

If you already paid for the live event and would like to re-watch the recording, please email for a direct link. 

Please note:  If you would like to receive CEU credit, please do not complete this transaction. In order to receive CEU credit, this recording must be viewed on the CASP Online CEU Center.

Non-Member Price: $20
Member Price: $0