December Counselor Spotlights
Hello! My name is Terrie and I graduated from Biola University with a B.A. in Psychology and am now working on my Master’s in Clinical Psychology with an emphasis in Marriage and Family Therapy at Azusa Pacific University. One of the main reasons that I wanted to work for CPLA is because of my passion for working with children and adolescents in underserved communities. I also love how CPLA provides accessibility and awareness to mental health through school-based services. I am so grateful for the opportunity to be working for CPLA because of the guidance and constant support that I receive from my supervisors, FSP, and last but not least, my co-counselor. I absolutely adore my co-counselor, Nickella, so shout out to her!
I hope to change the world, even if it’s one child’s world, by providing them with a safe space where they feel seen and heard. Recently, I had a bunch of kindergarteners running up to me for hugs, screaming “We love you, Miss Terrie!” This was the moment that I knew that I was made to work with this population. I hope that I can continue to be someone who can have a positive impact in the life of children by continuously providing them with warmth and care that they deserve.
In 10 years, I see myself having my own private practice where I specialize in working with school-age children and their families. My hope is to continue to bring awareness to mental health and serve as a resource to underserved communities. I also would love to be in the process of starting my own non-profit organization geared towards encouraging and empowering the youth to pursue their aspirations.
On my free days, I enjoy spending time with my friends and family as well as making time for self-care. Within the past 2 years, I have been loving film photography so I’ve been capturing every moment that I possibly can on my film camera. I find it so exciting to wait to see how the photos turn out in the end!
I'm currently attending Pepperdine University. I'm passionate about human rights, science, and education. I like to hike or walk around my neighborhood, listening to tiny desk concerts, baking, dancing, vinyasa, and kundalini yoga practice. I also love spontaneous road trips with my friends, family, and my dog Panela.
I love working at CPLA because I have a lot of support from my FSP and supervisors. I have the freedom to be authentic but at the same time know that I'm not alone and that my team is there for me every step of the way. I didn't think twice about choosing CPLA as my practicum site. In 2019 I completed a master's degree, and my grant proposal was specifically about school-based mental health services in Hispanic communities of Los Angeles. I spent a year researching what causes the underutilization of mental health services in this community and solution-based approaches. The concept of familismo and stigma play a major impact on help-seeking behavior. Hispanics are at higher risk of developing psychopathology than other ethnic groups. However, we are least likely to use mental health services. The underutilization of mental health services in our community serves as a threat to children born in this environment since the risk for psychopathology experienced at an early age can be carried on to adulthood if early intervention does not occur. With early intervention in mind, I moved on to research the importance of school-based mental health services. I learned about CPLA a year later from a friend who was doing his practicum there at the time. When I returned to Pepperdine to get the specialization in Marriage and Family Therapy, I already knew what my top site was to get my hours and experience.
I think everyone has the power to impact someone else's life. You don't have to be in the mental health field to show empathy and kindness to another person. I think it starts with our willingness to make changes in ourselves and evolve mentally and spiritually. Being yourself and genuine with your intentions. In ten years from now, I see myself having my own practice but also dedicating time to a non-profit to be able to serve clients who can't afford private insurance.
My name is Joelle Russum and I am currently studying to get my MFT at California State University, Dominguez Hills. After teaching English abroad to children and teens in both Spain and Colombia, I decided that I wanted to support teens with their mental health needs. CPLA provided me with a wonderful opportunity to continue to grow!
I love working at CPLA because of the unconditional support that I receive from my FSP, all the way to the top of the organization. CPLA provides me with resources, great supervisors and interesting trainings/workshops!
In ten years I see myself working in both private practice and community mental health. I would like to support families through difficult life cycles and transitions. I hope to change the world by providing psychoeducation at schools and helping as many families as possible during a crisis.
In my free time I enjoy practicing yoga, biking by the beach and hiking in the mountains. I am passionate about traveling and knowing more about different cultures.
I previously attended CSU Northridge and graduated with a bachelor's in psychology. Now I am currently in my third year at The Chicago School of Professional Psychology working towards my master's in Marriage and Family Therapy. I am currently also working, and have worked for three years at an adult mental health inpatient and outpatient treatment center. My official title is Client Assistant, and my responsibilities are to work in the residences providing support for the clients. I also worked for some time in the psychiatry office helping with administrative duties before returning to school for my master's program. In addition, I also TA for my professor in helping with the community partnerships department. In my free time, I absolutely love reading! Anything from a dystopian series, to mysteries, and even romance. There is just nothing like the feeling of losing myself in a book. A few months ago I became motivated to try something new and I decided to attend aerial fitness classes. It has now become my new favorite hobby.
I first heard about CPLA through a practicum fair at school. I was immediately captivated by their mission and values, and working with children has always been an interest of mine. They also demonstrate an immense amount of support for their counselors, something I truly value during this journey. I love working with CPLA because I truly enjoy working with the students at the schools. Also, because of the monumental amount of support we receive from our FSPs, supervisors, directors and from other counselors as well.
In ten years, I see myself having my own private practice where I continue to work with children and families. My hope is to be able to reach the lives of as many children and families as I can. We live in such uncertain and difficult times that having a strong support system is crucial for everyone. I hope that I can make a change by being able to provide that much needed support, and a safe space for all the children I get to work with.