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Alice McDowell, Ph.D., founder and director of the Hidden Treasure program, is a counselor in private practice, retreat guide, author, and co-founder of Light on the Hill Retreat Center. Formerly a professor of religious studies at Ithaca College for 18 years, she now facilitates groups devoted to inner work. Her award winning book, Hidden Treasure: How to Break Free of Five Patterns that Hide Your True Self is used as a text for the program.

She has trained with healers, humanist and transpersonal psychologists, Sufi and Buddhist teachers, and Christian contemplatives, and has guided people in their personal and spiritual journeys for over 30 years. She draws upon her diverse training and life experience to help others awaken to their true selves, their divinity within.

Julie Schnepel, Ph.D. (in music), is a Hidden Treasure graduate, and she has been assisting with the program since 2006. She holds graduate degrees in music and heads the U.S. office of an international database of music literature at Cornell University. She has taught music history at Ithaca College, and is active in the music and spiritual gifts ministries at St. Paul’s United Methodist Church in Ithaca. Her experience with the Hidden Treasure program has profoundly affected all areas of her life and has deepened her connections with her family, friends, and colleagues.

Elisa Sciscioli, M.A Transpersonal Psychology, is a Hidden Treasure graduate and teacher of the program for 7 years. She began working with Alice while finishing degrees in music education and vocal performance in 2002. Elisa is the facilitator and founder of the Joy of Group Singing program, designed to help people connect more deeply with themselves and others while learning simple multicultural songs and chants. She offers integrative voice sessions for adults and teenagers. Many of her song lyrics have been influenced by the teachings of Hidden Treasure. 

Jamie Portrait 1

Jamie Yaman, B.A. is a Hidden Treasure graduate. He graduated from the University of Massachusetts Amherst and works with his family’s real estate company in the Cortland area as an agent and manager. He is a performing musician and an active member of his community. Attending leadership conferences, personal development seminars, and retreats has been a primary focus for his growth. He has also gained spiritual and psychological insights through his travels, especially to India. His experience with the Hidden Treasure program has deeply influenced him, and through this program he has experienced profound growth in his relationship with others, as well as himself.