February 28, 2024

MaKenzie Briere, MS, MSEd, BCBA, LABA, has worked for The New England Center for Children’s (NECC) Intensive Treatment Team (ITT) since 2015, serving in a number of roles, including her current position as program specialist for ITT Apartment 4.

She was nominated by several colleagues because “she is supportive, takes the time for thorough explanation with staff, and is a great advocate for staff and students.” Others added, “It has been an absolute pleasure getting to know her as a person, clinician, and leader. She’s presented herself with so much kindness and grace such that it has allowed each of us the space to feel heard. Her willingness to be an active listener has allowed us to see her as approachable. Kenz’s openness to sharing that she may not have the solution to every situation has allowed us to feel accepted when we find ourselves in similar situations. Her thoroughness in follow-up provides us with actionable items and clear direction. Over the last few months, Kenz has gone above and beyond our expectations of a leader. Specifically, she has prioritized our professional development, allowed each of us opportunities to make clinical decisions and grow as clinicians, and maintained a collaborative work environment. She has become the heart of this team and brought us together to be one of the most collaborative supervisory teams we’ve been a part of. There is no doubt in our minds that she will continue to grow into an exceptional program specialist. Our team is beyond grateful that she was slotted to be our lead clinician. We hope she knows how impactful her hard work has been to each of us, and we are grateful to be able to grow and model our own behavior from hers.”

How long have you worked for NECC?

I started at NECC in June 2015. In my time here, I have always worked on the ITT, serving as a core shift manager (CSM), residential coordinator, education coordinator, and now as program specialist.

What is your favorite part of your job?

It’s so hard to pick just one—I love working with the students that we serve and supporting them in making progress towards their goals. I also enjoy working with the staff and supporting their professional development goals.

Why did you choose a career in helping children with autism?

In my undergrad, I worked in a program with children with autism and knew this was the field I wanted to be in. This work can be so impactful, and I have enjoyed learning and growing right alongside my colleagues and the students who we are serving.

Have you taken advantage of any of the grad programs or teacher training at NECC?

I completed the Simmons University program for my master’s in education and went on to complete the Western New England University master’s program in applied behavior analysis (ABA). I am so thankful for the opportunity to complete two graduate degrees while working at NECC!

Who is someone you look up to?

There are so many individuals I look up to here at NECC. My former supervisors have had such a positive impact on me as a clinician and an educator. I continue to try to incorporate their leadership styles into my professional development and am so thankful for their guidance.

What is your life philosophy or motto you like to live by?

“Who we are is how we lead. Self-awareness, kindness, vision, accountability, trust, just basic skills of being a good human being to other human beings”-Brene Brown