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Brandt Center to bring behavior health help for teens, young adults to Rutgers University

The Brandt Center is bringing a first of its kind mental wellness experience to New Jersey. It's geared toward helping teenagers and young adults ages 13 to 30.

Amanda Lee

Jun 11, 2024, 10:34 AM

Updated 40 days ago

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A new behavioral health and retreat center will soon be open to the public at Rutgers University in New Brunswick.
The Brandt Center is bringing a first of its kind mental wellness experience to New Jersey. It's geared toward helping teenagers and young adults ages 13 to 30.
Director, Micah Hillis told News 12, "We'll be serving a lot of folks who have challenges, who have anxiety, depression, mood disorders. Those are often what brings an adolescent or young adult, what's interrupting their life and making their daily function difficult."
The Brandt Center is comprised of the Blau Wellness Center, which is an outpatient and intensive outpatient building, where patients can stay for 3 to 6 weeks.
"There will be psychologists here, social workers, counselors and researchers as well, all here providing different components of treatment and therapy," Hillis said.
The center offers the basics such as one-on-one treatment and group treatment rooms. But it also brings a holistic approach to therapy by including music therapy, art therapy, a mind and body studio and an outdoor space. The retreat center has rooms for up to 16 patients, a spa and a theatre.
The idea came from Rutgers graduate Marlene Brandt's Youth Behavioral Health Initiative. She says the idea came from her daughter Casey who suffered with mental health as a teenager.
During the ribbon cutting for the Brandt Center, Brandt shared, "In a short span of time Caseys melancholy tumbled toward a terrifyingly dark juncture."
Brandt says her journey toward finding the right help for her daughter was long and difficult, but she ended up finding answers at a facility more than 200 miles away.
She says now other teenagers and young adults in New Jersey will be able to get specialized care right here at home.
During her speech, she added, "Casey's journey not only awakened a pressing need for such a facility but it also inspired a comprehensive and therapeutic design that is unlike any in existence."
The Brandt Center is expected to open later this year.


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