Emily Doolan

Position: PLAY Project Consultant
Categories: PLAY Project

Emily holds a Bachelor of Child and Youth Studies, a Diploma of Early Childhood Education and is currently completing a Bachelor of Education and PLAY Project Certification. Emily speaks both English and French.

Over the past eight years, Emily has been working in the field of early childhood education, as a Registered Early Childhood Educator, working in daycare settings and in the Full-Day Kindergarten Program for local school boards. Additionally, Emily has worked in Health Promotion as a community outreach worker implementing educational programming, including math, literacy, prenatal, childhood development and other health promotion programs for both children and parents living disproportionately impacted communities.

“I chose to work at ACT Learning Centre because I have always wanted to gain additional experience and training for supporting children with autism, as well as their families. ACT offered that change I needed! The team at ACT is made up of motivated and intelligent staff with different backgrounds of experience and education which make it all the more interesting to learn and grow professionally from one another!”

If you could visit anywhere in the world, where would it be?
New Zealand

If you had to eat one food for the rest of your life, what would it be?
Pasta

Are you a morning person or a night owl?
Morning person

This post is also available in: French

Emily Doolan

PLAY Project Consultant

Emily holds a Bachelor of Child and Youth Studies, a Diploma of Early Childhood Education and is currently completing a Bachelor of Education and PLAY...

Emma Gorham

Position: PLAY Project Consultant
Categories: PLAY Project

Emma graduated from Carleton University with a Bachelor of Psychology and Linguistics and went on to receive a Master of Educational Psychology. She also holds diplomas in both Early Childhood Education and Applied Behaviour Analysis from Algonquin College.

Emma has extensive experience working with children with special needs, including coordinating life skills programming, social activities and respite workers. She also grew up with siblings on the autism spectrum. In her spare time, you can find Emma drawing and painting.

If you could visit anywhere in the world, where would it be?
Greece

What’s your favourite holiday?
Halloween

Are you a morning person or a night owl?
Morning person

This post is also available in: French

Emma Gorham

PLAY Project Consultant

Emma graduated from Carleton University with a Bachelor of Psychology and Linguistics and went on to receive a Master of Educational Psychology. She also holds...

Jenna Crossman

Position: Assistant Manager - PLAY Project
Categories: PLAY Project

Jenna has extensive experience providing ABA therapy in-home and clinic settings. She also has experience providing programming, assessments and client intake. Jenna holds a Bachelor of Arts – Sociology, an Autism and Behavioural Science certificate and is currently completing her PLAY Consultant Certification. Jenna is a Registered Behaviour Technician (RBT) with the BACB. As the Assistant Manager for the PLAY Project at ACT, Jenna combines her clinical and administrative experience while supporting the team to provide the best services possible. On the weekends, you can find Jenna sitting around a table playing a board game with friends.

“When I was offered a job in the PLAY Project at ACT, I decided to take the leap and learn more about developmental approaches for supporting children with Autism. The team at ACT is so supportive and encouraging in every aspect and a positive work environment is so important to me. I’m glad I made the change!”

If you could have any exotic animal as a pet, what would it be?
Elephant, hands down.

If you had to eat one food for the rest of your life, what would it be?
Pizza

What’s your favourite holiday?
Christmas

This post is also available in: French

Jenna Crossman

Assistant Manager - PLAY Project

Jenna has extensive experience providing ABA therapy in-home and clinic settings. She also has experience providing programming, assessments and client intake. Jenna holds a Bachelor...

Jessica Raymond

Position: PLAY Project Consultant
Categories: PLAY Project

Jessica graduated from Algonquin College with a diploma of Early Childhood Education in 2017 and is a Registered Early Childhood Educator under the College of ECEs. She speaks English and French and has worked with children for over 10 years. She has been a Registered Early Childhood Educator for the past five years. Throughout her career, Jessica has provided children with a safe learning environment where they could develop their skills and learn through play.

I am passionate about learning more about early child development and different techniques and strategies that I can implement to help children progress and become successful. I am grateful to be a part of the Play Project where I can pass down my knowledge to families so that they as well can learn these techniques and strategies and be a part of their child’s learning journey.

If you could visit anywhere in the world, where would it be?

Australia

If you could have any exotic animal as a pet, what would it be?

Lion

What’s your favourite holiday?

Christmas

This post is also available in: French

Jessica Raymond

PLAY Project Consultant

Jessica graduated from Algonquin College with a diploma of Early Childhood Education in 2017 and is a Registered Early Childhood Educator under the College of...

Julie Tessier

Position: Occupational Therapist
Categories: Entry to School, Occupational Therapy, PLAY Project

Julie Tessier is a registered Occupational Therapist (OT) with the province of Ontario. She graduated from the University of Ottawa with a Bachelor’s degree in Human Kinetics and completed a Master of Health Science in Occupational Therapy in 2019. She provides Occupational Therapy services in both English and French. In addition to providing assessments, interventions and consultations in private practice, Julie is also part of many projects such as a registered PLAY consultant for the Play Project, a member of the supervisory team in the Entry to School (ETS) Program and a mentor for the Secret Agent Society (SAS) research project.

Julie’s love of helping kids has led her to acquire several years of experience working alongside experienced pediatric therapists. For the past eight years, she has worked with children on the autism spectrum in different settings. She has skillfully assisted with integration in day cares, has developed and led social groups as well as summer camps, provided respite services to families. She continues to pursue her passion as an Occupational Therapist with a special focus on working with children of all ages.

Julie aspires to help children gain independence in their everyday activities as well as work in an interdisciplinary setting. Julie provides quality interventions that emphasize promoting the child’s motivation and engagement within activities of their daily life. Julie is highly motivated to grow and develop as a therapist as she and completed various trainings.

In her spare time, Julie loves to travel, spend time outdoors, participate in various sports and being surrounded with her friends and family.

If you could travel to anywhere in the world, where would it be?

Iceland

If you had to eat one food for the rest of your life, what would it be?

Stir fry

If you could have any exotic animal as a pet, what would it be?

Goat

This post is also available in: French

Julie Tessier

Occupational Therapist

Julie Tessier is a registered Occupational Therapist (OT) with the province of Ontario. She graduated from the University of Ottawa with a Bachelor’s degree in...

Karen Matthews

Position: PLAY Project Consultant and Communicative Disorders Assistant
Categories: PLAY Project, Speech-Language Therapy

Karen has experience working with children and individuals with various speech and language disorders. She holds an Honours Bachelor of Cognitive Science of Language, and Sociology from McMaster University, as well as a Communicative Disorders Assistant (CDA) Graduate Certificate from St. Lawrence College.

Karen has had the opportunity to work with The University Health Network in their Adult Alternative and Augmentative Communication clinic. She worked as an Educator-therapist implementing ESDM therapy for young children for three years, before transitioning to ACT. As a PLAY Consultant, she supports parents and caregivers to develop joyous, meaningful engagement with their child. She continues to expand her skill set by supporting children as an Occupational Therapist Assistant. Karen speaks English and Spanish and loves dogs. She owns a two-year-old trouble-making German Shepherd.

If you had to eat one food for the rest of your life, what would it be?

Ice cream

What’s your favourite holiday?

Christmas

Are you a morning person or a night-owl?

Morning person

This post is also available in: French

Karen Matthews

PLAY Project Consultant and Communicative Disorders Assistant

Karen has experience working with children and individuals with various speech and language disorders. She holds an Honours Bachelor of Cognitive Science of Language, and...

Kathleen Simpson

Position: PLAY Consultant
Categories: PLAY Project

Kathleen holds an Occupational Therapist Assistant and Physiotherapist Assistant Diploma from Algonquin College. She has experience working with children in a variety of different environments. In her spare time, Kathleen loves baking and spending time hiking or doing something active with friends.

If you had to eat one food for the rest of your life, what would it be?
Stirfry

What’s your favourite holiday?
Thanksgiving

Are you a morning person or a night-owl?
Morning person

This post is also available in: French

Kathleen Simpson

PLAY Consultant

Kathleen holds an Occupational Therapist Assistant and Physiotherapist Assistant Diploma from Algonquin College. She has experience working with children in a variety of different environments....

Rebecca Nishimura

Position: Director of Speech-Language Pathology and the PLAY Project
Categories: Leadership, PLAY Project, Speech-Language Therapy

Rebecca Nishimura is the director of Speech-Language Pathology and the PLAY Project. She is a registered Speech-Language Pathologist with the province of Ontario. Since graduating with a Master of Communication Sciences and Disorders from McGill University in 2019, Rebecca has worked primarily with preschoolers and school-aged children with autism spectrum disorders and receptive/expressive language difficulties. She emphasizes finding meaningful ways to target communication with her clients by including their interests and using therapy activities that mirror real-life needs as much as possible. Rebecca provides direct therapy and consultation to support children’s communication skills across settings and modalities.

“I work at ACT because I love collaborating with and learning from other disciplines. I feel like I learn something new every day!”

If you had to eat one food for the rest of your life, what would it be?

Raspberries

If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would it be?

Japan

If you could have any exotic animal as a pet, what would it be?

Red Panda

This post is also available in: French

Rebecca Nishimura

Director of Speech-Language Pathology and the PLAY Project

Rebecca Nishimura is the director of Speech-Language Pathology and the PLAY Project. She is a registered Speech-Language Pathologist with the province of Ontario. Since graduating...

This post is also available in: French