I obtained my Bachelor’s degree from Eastern Illinois University in Family Consumer Sciences with a focus on elementary education. During my undergraduate studies, I volunteered at the local domestic violence shelter and was heavily involved in programs focused on youth. I then spent three years teaching preschool and prekindergarten. I’d always known I wanted to work with children, but this experience led me away from the education route and more into the mental health field. My background in teaching helps when I’m giving psychoeducation, although providing therapy is more aligned with my personality and goals. Undergoing all my social work trainings and education, I’m able to focus on all the relevant aspects of communities, families, and individuals that impact their functioning.
I worked in a community mental health center for five and a half years, which helped me become more skilled with crisis work and providing services for those struggling with substance abuse. It was within this role that I gained more expertise as I worked with at-risk children/teens in the area. I then obtained my Master’s degree in Social Work at the University of Aurora so I could further the work I’d been doing.
Approach to Therapy
I primarily treat depression, anxiety, behavioral challenges, and high-risk behaviors in children, teens, young adults, and families. I have significant experience providing trauma-informed care and working with LGBTQ+ clients in a positive, affirming way. I look at situations from all angles which helps me to challenge my clients to do the same. I take a positive, encouraging approach and excel at making people feel comfortable. My clients often tell me they never feel judged around me, and this helps them to accept challenges and alternative perspectives even if it’s not what they want to hear. I adapt my approach to each client and each session; some days we might talk for the entire appointment, or some days I might have a worksheet or art activity prepared. This is also reflected in my theoretical orientations. I lean heavily on CBT, DBT, Motivational Interviewing, and IFS but I will incorporate aspects of other approaches when needed.