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Social work became my career years ago through the guidance of many mentors, but I did not truly understand my passion behind it until I finished school and began working with people in need. I developed a strong passion to understand, listen, and know people's stories. I often felt judged and misunderstood throughout my life, so it drives me to help others feel understood, not be judged, but fully accepted.
I have now been in the social field for over 24 years and have worked with a variety of people. I began my studies at Elizabethtown College, but family strife brought me back to the Lehigh Valley to help care for a loved one. This led me to pursue my associate degree at Northampton Community College, where I focused on childcare and development. During this time, I volunteered in an assisted living home and worked for a crisis line for trauma victims. These experiences along with my mentors encouraged me to pursue my bachelor's degree in social work. I completed my degree at Edinboro University, and then ultimately attended Marywood College to complete my master's degree in social work. While in college, I gained experience working as a case manager and moving up to a position as an executive director for a non-profit company. After completing my master's degree, I then worked at an adult behavioral unit supporting people that struggled with anxiety and depression to the severest of mental health issues. A change of pace was needed so I transitioned into working at a teen youth residential facility as a case manager/counselor. All these working experiences have given me the expertise and ability to work with youth as well as adults supporting them through their mental health journey.
Seven years ago, I decided to pursue a more intense role working with people as an outpatient mental health therapist supporting those that I saw in acute and residential settings into supporting them in the day-to-day world. I now utilize my passion for listening and accepting others as a client-centered and strengths-based approach. I have expanded my social work training to include Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Motivational Interviewing, and Eye-Movement Desensitization Reprocessing (EMDR).
The focus of my work as a therapist is now supporting those individuals who are battling mental illness but also people who have experienced grief, loss, and trauma and others who may be struggling with relationship issues and life adjustments. I believe that therapy is a way to “find out who you are and do it on purpose.” (Dolly Parton)
When we get lost, emotionally, physically, and spiritually it ends up being easier to believe the negative thoughts or to have the negative thinking. Therapy is a place to be heard, validated, and accepted for who you are and reminded how valuable you can be while providing the client with the “tools” to do so.