2018 Symposium: Expanding the Focus of Research on MAPs

Event details

  • Saturday | September 22, 2018
  • 8:30 am - 5:00 pm
  • Baltimore, MD

Theme: Expanding the Focus

This day-long symposium will facilitate the exchange of ideas among researchers, scholars, mental health professionals, minor-attracted people, and others who have an interest in research on people who are attracted to children or adolescents (MAPs). A growing number of researchers and practitioners are realizing the inadequacy of common perceptions of MAPs and the importance of studies that move beyond abuse prevention toward understanding the development and well-being of MAPs. The symposium will address critical issues regarding the mental health of MAPs,treatment approaches that go beyond prevention, and educating practitioners and students in mental health and human sexuality.

Keynote Speaker

Dr. Jill S. Levenson, PhD, MSW, LCSW is a Professor of Social Work at Barry University in Miami, FL, and a clinical social worker in practice in South Florida. Her current research focuses on understanding the obstacles to help-seeking for MAPs, as well as their perspectives on their counseling needs. As a scientist-practitioner and an advocate for human rights and social justice, her ultimate goal is to combat stigma by preparing and training therapists to provide ethical, competent, compassionate care for MAPs.

Dr. Levenson’s talk is entitled “Beyond Beliefs: Shifting our Thinking About MAPs.” We don’t choose our sexual interests, but we choose what we do and how we think about our identity. This talk will offer a summary of research describing what MAPs tell us about their therapeutic needs and the barriers to help-seeking. A framework will be offered for reducing stigma, changing the dialogue, and improving access to ethical, relevant, competent, and compassionate clinical services best suited to help MAPs with their unique mental health needs and counseling goals.


The program is currently being developed. Check this page for updates over the next few weeks.

Both continental breakfast and lunch will be provided.

Social workers and psychologists who attend will receive 6 CEUs.


The symposium will be held at a conference facility approximately ten miles from downtown Baltimore, convenient to BWI Thurgood Marshall Airport. Details along with driving directions will be sent to attendees upon acceptance of their registration.


Online registration is required. The registration deadline is Friday, September 7, 2018.

Registration is open to researchers, scholars, practitioners, educators, and students in the mental health, sexuality, and related fields. Three or more students from the same university receive a group discount and may register together or separately.

Mental health or criminal justice advocates, members of the media, and friends and family members of MAPs may also use the online registration form to apply for an invitation to attend, and should delay payment until receiving an invitation.

MAPs may also use the online registration form to apply for an invitation to attend, and may protect their privacy by using a pseudonym and pseudo-address when registering. We carefully vet all workshop attendees to insure that the workshop will be safe for MAPs.

Registration fees are as follows:

  • Regular registration: $80
  • Students, friends or family members of MAPs: $40
  • Three or more students from the same university: $30 each
  • MAPs: free (donation is appreciated to cover lunch and snacks)


Questions? Email symposium@b4uact.org or call (410) 871-8156.