BS, Environmental Studies - UNC Wilmington
BA, Psychology - UNC Wilmington
MS, Clinical Mental Health Counseling - Western Carolina University
Licensed Clinical Mental Health Counselor (NC) #11739 Integrative Somatic Trauma Therapy Certificate (60 hrs) PMBIA Level 1 Mountain Bike Instructor
Wilderness First Responder (WFR)
In college, I needed change from the formal classroom and my social environment, so I went on a NOLS expedition. The four months I spent in the deserts of the Southwest and the lush forests and waters of the Pacific Northwest pushed me in ways that I did not know I could be pushed. On that course, I learned that making mistakes was okay and necessary for growth, that I had more to offer than I gave myself credit for, and that I could thrive in the face of adversity. I wanted to share this experience with others, so the week after I graduated from college I drove west to Wyoming and worked towards becoming an instructor myself.
I spent a lot of time in the wilderness as a young adult. When I was working through a rock climb or helping students navigate off-trail travel, I felt confident and free. I also felt relaxed in the simplicities and complexities of nature. I learned to be an independent and strong woman when I was immersed in the beauty of the mountains and supporting students in their personal growth.
As wonderful as life in the backcountry is, it’s a difficult lifestyle to maintain in the long term. Other opportunities eventually led me to a more structured lifestyle with less time spent in the outdoors. While this is what I wanted, it also made me feel like I’d lost a huge part of my sense of self. My own experience with counseling, along with mountain biking, helped me to see that I was still the same brave, confident, and strong woman—I was simply in the midst of a huge transition and needed support.
I went to graduate school for Clinical Mental Health Counseling because the therapeutic relationship in counseling is so similar to the relationships that I have with my NOLS students. I found that building connections and empowering others—whether they were challenged by life back home or by the mountain environment—is what I am most passionate about.
Transitions, trauma, anxiety, and all of the other struggles that we face can feel immobilizing. We can feel stuck and need support. I witness my clients being vulnerable, trying new and scary things while pushing their limits, and experiencing growth through the process.
I am excited to walk alongside my clients during their journey in counseling and offer a therapeutic space that is safe, non-judgmental, and compassionate.