Mandt Student Academy

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Four Oaks is committed to the safety of all individuals, including community members, youth, families, and professionals. By helping providers understand the importance of creating an engaging, safe environment, we foster opportunities to build connections and learning.

By partnering with the Mandt System®, we provide an opportunity for educators, parents, and partners to feel more confident and prepare to support our most vulnerable, challenging individuals. We also offer abbreviate, re-certification classes for those with a current certification. You can learn more about the Mandt System® here.

See our calendar of scheduled trainings here.

Training Opportunities

We offer two options to best fit your schedule.

  • Join a regularly-scheduled training with Four Oaks. This is best for small groups or individuals looking for training opportunities.
  • Customize a training session for your team or group with Four Oaks trainers. We can provide training at your location, or at a Four Oaks location as available. A minimum of eight participants is required.
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Class Types

We offer two types of Mandt System® methods - relational and technical. Both classes are regularly available through Four Oaks or can be scheduled as a customized training session with your team.

Relational training is the foundation of the system and includes how to be engaged and build positive, healthy relationships to prevent situations from becoming crisis incidences. Our classes cover a variety of topics. Learn about each of the focus areas designed to prepare you for potential crisis situations.

Building Healthy Relationships – Learn about healthy relationships, graded system of alternatives, professional and personal boundaries, Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, the Crisis Cycle, and more.

Building Healthy Communication – Learn about communication processes, non-verbal communication, active listening, para language, principles of touching, and more.

Conflict Resolution – Learn about building healthy conflict resolution, understanding confrontation and communication in conflict, fear, how to resolve conflicts, and more.

Technical training teaches users how to protect people when a situation does become a crisis situation. Our classes cover a variety of topics. Learn about each of the focus areas designed to prepare you for potential crisis situations.

Assisting & Supporting Skills – Learn about physical interactions, implementing physical interactions, stance and balance, body mechanics and movement, side body hug, and more.

Separating Technical Skills – Learn about restrictive physical interactions, conflict resolution (SODAS), non-physical ways of gaining cooperation, finger holds, clothing release, and more.

Restraining Skills – Learn about medical risks and signs of distress, prohibited practices, physical restraint, key points of restraining, one-arm restraint, two person restraint, and more.

Four Oaks Certified Mandt System® Instructors

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Tim Cart

Program Director

Tim has been with Four Oaks for 19 years, and has experience in Foster Group Care, CWES/Shelter, and Community-Based programming. He is AHA CPR and First Aid Instructor and is certified in Psychological First Aid.

His mission is "to inspire meaningful change through teaching, coaching, mentoring and role modeling." He believes in helping families, children and staff work toward meaningful change that matters to them and finding creative ways to do it.

Prior to joining the Four Oaks family, Tim served in the United States Army as a Staff Sergeant for 9 years as both Light Infantry and Military Police. When not providing leadership for the enterprise, Tim prefers to spend time at home with his family.

You can contact Tim at tcart@fouroaks.org.


Ashley Brooks

Trainer/Shift Leader, PMIC

Serving in a dual role as shift leader and trainer, Ashley both leads youth counselors in daily learning, and trains staff development through the agency. She has helped develop programming, and provides consistent support to other programs around campus, as well as the school.

Ashley is a certified Mandt (Crisis Management) trainer, as well as AHA CPR and First Aid Instructor, and is in the process of becoming an Understanding Trauma
Trainer for the CWPTA.

She currently serves in the Iowa Army National Guard as a Lieutenant. She enjoys spending time with her wife and dogs, and supporting children in her home as a licensed foster parent.

You can contact Ashley at abrooks@fouroaks.org.

Jody Unsen

TRAINING AND STAFF DEVELOPMENT MANAGER

Jody Unsen has been with Four Oaks for almost 27 years. She has helped develop trauma-based curriculum and programming for Four Oaks PMIC and Foster Group Care settings.

Jody has had several supervisory roles within Four Oaks, and she has mentored numerous staff members, many of which are now in leadership positions.

Jody has been an Understanding Trauma facilitator with the Child Welfare Provider Training Academy since 2012. She is certified in Psychological First Aid and Trauma Informed Yoga, a certified Mandt (Crisis Management) Trainer, AHA CPR and First Aid Instructor, and a Training Center Faculty Member.

You can contact Jody at junsen@fouroaks.org.