Counselor Education Online - 6th Annual Virtual Conference
May 16-19, 2023

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DAY 1 - Tuesday, May 16, 2023

This presentation explores the changes in skilled nursing and assisted living facilities, particularly since the pandemic, and the challenges and opportunities this presents mental health professionals in working with this population.

Self-Care Strategies for Success: Practical Strategies for Students and Professionals – Presented by Elizabeth Jarquin and Joshua Hernandez

Whether you are a counseling student or mental health professional, self-care is essential. Students are expected to balance their courses, coursework, internships, work responsibilities, and relationships. Similarly, mental health professionals face many of these same expectations and challenges. The global Covid-19 pandemic created even more stressors that have led to negative mental health effects in both groups, making self-careessential. Self-care strategies can help individuals effectively navigate the expectations, challenges, and stressors that arise both inside and outside of the counseling field by helping individuals cope better, decrease stressors, increase happiness and wellness, and create a healthier work-life balance. During this workshop, participants will learn simple and practical self-care strategies they can easily implement in their everyday lives.

Rape by Omission – Non-Violent Sexual Abuse – Presented by Alena Porter, MA, LPC

There are a multitude of situations in which people feel forced to consent to sexual activities which they do not want to do. Individuals who experience unwanted sexual attention or activity may experience the same physical and psychological reactions as those who have experienced rape or sexual abuse. These clients tend to feel that they do not deserve or warrant trauma treatment because what they went through was “not that bad.” How do therapists help clients with these experiences?

Presented by Susan Foster, Kristy Eldredge, Cody Dickson, and Andy Brown

This presentation will focus on consultation and ethical decision-making in trauma work. Presenters will discuss the effectively assessing of how trauma shows up in counseling, identify appropriate trauma informed decision-making model, apply trauma informed ethical decision-making models to case studies, Identify trauma informed consultation strategies, and apply trauma informed consultation strategies to case studies.

Moving Toward Wellness: Integrating Physical Activity with Counseling – Presented by Ruth Ouzts Moore, Ph.D., NCC and Corey Burks

Research has shown the benefits of physical activity in maintaining health and preventing certain medical conditions. Regular physical activity has also been found to alleviate symptoms of depression, anxiety, and other mental health conditions. There is limited research focusing on a theoretical framework integrating physical activity in mental health counseling practice. The presenters will discuss the importance of physical activity from a humanistic perspective to enhance clients’ social and emotional well-being.

Teaching and Supervision of Human Trafficking in Counselor Education Programs

There are unique challenges in training counseling students in both classroom and fieldwork settings on the complex issue of human trafficking. Counselor education programs will benefit from taking the initiative to train students on this critical issue. In this presentation, teaching and supervision models and specific strategies will be provided from the presenters’ own experiences as counselor educators, supervisors, and graduate students.

For more information regarding continuing education, please email [email protected].

Strategies for Creating Effective Experiential Group Therapy Programs for Trauma Victims – Presented by Sabriya Dobbins

Experiential therapy group provides victims of trauma with the opportunity to focus on the subjective experience of their situations through the use of multiple activity-based therapeutic modalities. Group therapy helps victims to develop emotional regulation skills through in vivo experiencing with peers (Cowden et al., 2022). This presentation will focus on the components of creating effective experiential groups by exploring theoretical orientations involved, cohesion indicators, and steps to designing groups.

Chronic Pain and Depression: An Interprofessional Approach to Promote Positive Health Outcomes – Presented by Alyssa Weiss, Ph.D., LMFT, CCTP and Sally Weiss

Chronic pain presents a major issue in health care today and is considered a “stress state,” leading to depression (Sheng et al, 2017). This presentation addresses the importance of interprofessional collaboration in the treatment of clients who experience chronic pain accompanied by depression. The role of both the healthcare provider and the therapist will be discussed. Additionally, theories and therapeutic approaches that improve client outcomes and psychosocial functioning will be presented.

Intersection Between Holistic Substance Abuse Treatment and Restorative Justice – Presented by Ruth Ouzts Moore, Ph.D., NCC

This presentation discusses the importance of embracing a holistic approach to substance dependency and abuse while addressing the integration of restorative practices. Personal needs and skills such as co-occurring disorders, coping strategies, resiliency, interpersonal skills, and support networks are critical factors to consider when addressing substance use, dependency or abuse.

Mental Health Concerns Counselors Should Be Aware of When Working with Women Experiencing Infertility – Presented by Corinna Harris and Kellie Forziat-Pytel

Throughout the course of an infertility journey, women are met with numerous challenges that impact various aspects of their well being. Research is limited on effective counseling strategies for counselors to utilize when working with women experiencing infertility. This presentation will provide participants with an understanding of the mental health concerns reported by women experiencing infertility. In addition, participants will explore counseling strategies that can be used to address these concerns.

Focus on YOU: Your Contribution to the Mental Health Counseling Field – Presented by Dr. Yuleinys A. Castillo, LPC, CRC and Gitima Sharma

Infusing attentiveness to professional practices can help increase level of self-awareness about wellness. As mental health professionals navigate personal and professional demands, finding time to focus on self can be challenging. Understanding personal priorities and sense of purpose can help practitioners refocus their energy on self-FIRST then on their profession. Mental health professionals can buffer the impact work related demands to perform their counseling skills and enhance their wellness.

Existential Theory and Practice: Round Table Discussion – Presented by Susan Foster, Andy Brown, and Omar Troutman

The round table discussion will feature department faculty, exploring their experiences and expertise in the field of Existential Theory and Practice. Questions from attendees will be encouraged, as panelists look to be comprehensive in their presentation.

Professional Counselors Attitudes Towards Juvenile Sex Offenders – Presented by Brandt Briggs, Ph.D.

This presentation is a review of research conducted on professional counselors attitudes towards juvenile sex offenders. The presentation will review of religion or spirituality have any significant impact on the relationship between counselors attitudes towards juveniles sex offenders. As professional counselors it is part of our ethical responsibility to maintain no bias towards our clients and ensure that they receive the highest level of care we can provide.

DAY 2 - Wednesday, May 17, 2023

“Hey, That Was Creative!”: Using Metaphor As a Tool in Counseling and Counselor Education — Presented by Dr. Tiffany Rush-Wilson, Jane Hirsch, and Charmaine Lane 

Counseling concepts can be challenging to grasp for counseling students and clients. This presentation focuses on delivering information in educational and clinical settings using accessible modalities and learning processes, such as via metaphor. Presenters will use metaphor to explain various issues in counselor education, such as the differences between mental health professions. Clinical constructs, such as explaining the expected course of mental health diagnoses, will also be explained.

Supporting Youth Through Effective Mental Health Strategies — Presented by Breeda McGrath, Felice Mayes, and Rana Fouani

Factors that influence the mental health of youth include parenting strategies, traumatic events, community culture and resources. However, researchers have found a relationship between mental health and positive learning strategies that promote engagement, belonging, and feelings of accomplishment. This presentation will offer evidence-based research on interventions from positive psychology and ecological perspectives focusing on resilience and the whole child.

Trauma-Informed Teaching: Addressing Burnout and Increasing Diversity in the Profession – Presented by Olivia Bentley, PhD

Burnout is currently high across professions, and mental health professionals are needed more than ever. How do we create an environment where our students learn the knowledge and skills to be effective as clinicians, while also nurturing them so they do not leave our programs already experiencing burnout? This presentation applies a trauma-informed approach to preparing students for the mental health workforce. Practical strategies for creating a more inclusive and supportive learning environment are offered.

Healing Through Expression: The Use of Creative Interventions for Emerging Adults Experiencing Grief and Loss – Presented by Dr. Laura Fazio-Griffith, June Williams, and Javunte Andrews

This presentation will explore the use of creative interventions including expressive art and play therapy for working with emerging adults who have experienced grief and loss. An overview of emerging adulthood and the impact of grief and loss on this population will be discussed. Participants will engage in creative interventions to assist in the therapeutic process of healing through expression.

Presented by Aiden Rohwer-Nutter and Kristy Eldredge

Each year, hundreds of thousands of people die by suicide across the world. Mental health counselors need to be prepared to work with clients thinking of suicide, and meet their unique needs while balancing client autonomy with keeping the client safe from suicide. This presentation will focus on the needs of clients in counseling, how to normalize discussions of suicide, what legal and ethical standards counselors should be working within, and ways to support client autonomy while also ensuring safety from suicide. Finally, the presentation will cover how counselors can increase their competency and self-efficacy around suicide risk screenings, as well as additional resources they can utilize to support clients.

The Importance of LGBTQIA+ Competencies in Internship Supervision – Presented by Jordan Grassé and Ami Crowley

Many graduate school internship experiences include supervision on treating general client populations, rather than specific identities and presenting issues. In addition to limited scholarly training in graduate programs on working with the LGBTQIA+ population, student interns report that their supervisory experience did not reflect the necessary competencies when working with this population.

Becoming Sex Positive: Insights into Sex-Positive Therapy – Presented by Sarah E. Dalton

Human sexuality is an exciting topic but few therapists feel prepared to competently and confidently discuss sex in a session. Then, clinicians refer clients to sex therapists when that is not always required. All clinicians can be sex positive in their work. This presentation will discuss the benefits of training in human sexuality, the path to receiving certification in sex therapy, will offer examples of sex therapy in a session, and will provide suggestions for becoming sex positive in the clinical setting.

Providing Trauma Informed Clinical Supervision in Training Mental Health Professionals – Presented by Amanda Brown and Shu-Han Su

Are you a mental health professional who provides supervision for new clinicians? This workshop is designed to help supervisors navigate how to provide supervision from a trauma-informed lens that can be adapted into other supervision models. Supervisors will learn basic information about trauma-informed supervision and some practical ways to use it in their clinical supervision.

The Pedagogy of Trauma – Presented by Elisabeth Fincher

Exposure to trauma is part of the experiential learning process for counselors. Leaders of care organizations may have no training or experience in responding to traumas. There is a gap in the literature regarding the evidence-based practices for the teaching of trauma. This work is a collection of best practices to teach clinicians and leaders how to respond to traumas while reducing the risk of inducing secondary and vicarious traumas in the educational process.


Unpacking the Therapeutic Relationship in CBT with Youth: Finding the Secret Sauce Through Contextual Complexities – Presented by Vivian Chen, Isabella (Yiru) Xie, and Robert Friedberg

The therapeutic relationship in child psychotherapy has been studied for decades but remained unquestioned until recently. When this process is conceptualized homogeneously, studies find mixed results showing small to moderate effects in the relationship-outcome association. Consequently, a more precise understanding is indicated. This presentation highlights the essential components in therapeutic relationships in CBT with youth, moderating factors, and offers guidelines for forming treatment relationships with youth.

Mental Health and Wellness of Working Parents – Presented by Hannah Addison and Lindsey Brown McCormick

This presentation will cover supporting the mental health and wellness of working parents. The 3 sections include 1) common struggles of working parents, 2) how to support them on an individual level through psychotherapy and practical applications and 3) advocating for them on a community, state, and/or national level via paid parental leave, childcare stipends, mental healthcare access and more.

Five Practices of Exemplary Leadership: An Approach for Advocacy and Community with the Black Community – Presented by James Rujimora and Tim Eng

In the United States, the Black community has been challenged by inherent structural and systemic injustice manifested through racism and the legal system. These structural and systemic barriers have produced racial inequalities preventing Black advancement in education, healthcare, employment, and their relationship with law enforcement. This poster presentation will demonstrate how helping professionals can apply the Five Practices of Exemplary Leadership within the Black community.

Working with Child and Adolescent Clients: Round Table Discussion – Presented by Cory Clark, DA Erickson, and Ruth Ouzts Moore

The round table discussion will feature department faculty, exploring their experiences and expertise in the field of working with Child and Adolescent clients. Questions from attendees will be encouraged, as panelists look to be comprehensive in their presentation.

The Relationship Between Adverse Childhood Experiences and Mental Health Outcomes – Presented by James Rujimora, Dania Fakhro, and Sarah Mendoza

Adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) have been associated with long-term impacts on developmental processes and mental health disorders in adulthood. Less is known about the role of counseling in combatting the effects of ACEs. We will present data from a community counseling clinic and discuss the relationships between ACE scores and overall distress.

DAY 3 - Thursday, May 18, 2023

Embodiment in the Counseling Classroom: Perspectives from the Professor and Student – Presented by Amanda Grieme and Mary Ellen Alexander

With the emerging emphasis of including the body in counseling, counselor educators could benefit from integrating embodiment into the classroom. This presentation will offer participants the opportunity to learn more about embodiment and how it can be incorporated into the student experience. Through the perspective of the professor and student, each will provide practical tools in which embodiment can be assimilated into the classroom in order to facilitate a richer experience in counseling education.

Creative Ideas for Students and Professors During In-Person Counseling – Presented by Meg Bauhof and Kristy Eldredge

Learning counseling skills is one of the most daunting tasks of counselor training. Similarly, faculty are charged with helping students master skills while also regulating student emotions and building confidence. Studies show that differentiated instruction can reduce anxiety and promote learning, especially with skills-based material (Tolleson et al., 2017). In this interactive presentation, participants will learn creative activities for student and faculty approaches to in-person residencies.

Mitigating Intolerance of Uncertainty in Pediatric Patients with Comorbid Medical and Psychiatric Conditions – Presented by Andrea Hanna, Robert Friedberg, and Megan Neelley

Chronic medical conditions are highly comorbid with pediatric mood, anxiety, and behavior problems. Intolerance of uncertainty (IU) is associated with both physical and mental illnesses. Counselors often fail to target this important common factor. A variety of CBT procedures including psychoeducation, mindfulness, cognitive restructuring, behavioral experiments, and exposure are well-suited to mitigating IU. This poster presents counselors with information on comorbidities, IU, and recommended interventions.

Got Skills? Core Competencies for Working in Integrated Pediatric Behavioral Health Settings — Presented by Yasaman Movahedi, Robert Friedberg, Callie Goodman, and Joe Zucker

Integrated pediatric behavioral healthcare offers advantages including better clinical accountability decreased stigma. Workforce trends show growth in job openings in these clinics. Behavioral health professionals must be equipped with proper skills. This presentation outlines unique core competencies such as reliance on the biopsychosocial model, focus on population health, familiarity with a primary care medical culture, skills in functional analysis, brief assessment/therapy, consultation, and practice management.


The Transformational Leader: Tools and Approaches to Conflict Resolution — Presented by Dr. Shawn Davis and Kimberly Judd

Conflict takes on many forms and can impact both groups and individuals. In business, a goal of the transformational leader is to minimize negative conflict and successfully utilize positive conflict. There are many approaches to managing conflict available to the transformational leader, however, not all have been found to be equally effective when wrongly applied. Methods of successful conflict resolution will be discussed along with how these methods relate to the counseling profession. This program does not offer NBCC Clock Hours.


Mentoring for Counselor Longevity — Presented by Jeff Rice

This presentation will address the reason counselors leave the field and explore the ways that having a mentor can alleviate some of the stressors. New counselors can become jaded by resistant clients, third party payers, organizational politics and a host of other reasons that can lead to counselor burnout or frustration. By gaining a mentor there can be a shift of expectations. to ensure that neophyte counselors have the tools and resources to succeed beyond the scope of supervision for licensure.

Presented by Michelle Colarusso and Cody Dickson

Practicing counselors are often asked to supervise counselors-in-training without having been taught supervisory skills in their master’s program (Bernard & Goodyear, 1998; Lazovsky & Shimoni, 2005). Lack of training can lead to a variety of concerns with supervisors that will be reviewed in depth. In this presentation, participants will review the importance of regular supervision, review best practices for site supervisors including supervision agreements and informed consents, and assess gatekeeping from each roles’ perspective.

The Importance of Self-Care in Counselor Identity: An Experiential Practice for Supervisors and Supervisor Trainees – Presented by Tricia M. Mikolon, PhD, CRC, LPC, BC-TMH, Debra Perez, and Brooke Murphy

Wellness is especially important because counselors are one of the primary instruments in their own work (Shallcross, 2011). Supervision provides a structured interaction with the counselor trainee in which self-care education and techniques can be incorporated, intertwining it with the foundational core of counseling and counselor identity. Assisting supervisors and counselor trainees identify how to incorporate self-care into counselor identity is essential.


Ending the Vicious Cycle: Play Therapy with Diverse Families in Conflict, Chaos, and Crisis — Presented by Ruth Ouzts Moore, Ph.D., NCC, and Cheyenne Gonzales

Adolescents involved in play therapy often struggle with depression, anxiety, and trauma-related symptoms. Many conceal their emotions from others, and as a result, their underlying feelings manifest into problem behaviors. Unsurprisingly, they are often later diagnosed with disruptive behavior disorders, because their primary emotional disorders have not been treated. The presenters will provide techniques that can be implemented with culturally diverse families who are experiencing severe conflicts and crises.

Licensed to Lead: ​ A Need for Leadership Development for Professional Counselors – Presented by Lawrence Richardson and Guy Beauduy

As a profession, we primarily focus on counseling practice and clinical supervision; however, many professional counselors eventually find their way into leadership positions that focus on managing and leading teams. The counseling profession needs to accommodate the professional development of early-career counselors. By integrating concepts from human resources management and organizational development, this session will focus on maximizing the potential of professional counselors into professional leaders.


Integrating Creative Strategies in Group Therapy — Presented by Kellie Forziat-Pytel, Ph.D., Karissa Celona, Anja Whitehead, and Laura Matheny

Group counseling is a powerful therapeutic option that allows several individuals to grow and change together. Participants who attend this session will learn 3 creative group counseling techniques that can be used in many settings of practice, to facilitate group members self-awareness and progress towards their identified goals. Participants will have the opportunity to be a group member to deepen their level of understanding of how effective one of these techniques can be in the virtual setting.

The Journey of Cultural Competence: Implementing a Life-Long Model – Presented by Dr. Shanel Robinson, Jacob Hill, and Lucy Tykal

Alongside technical and theoretical skills, counselors practice cultural humility and competency to provide equitable and ethical care to diverse clientele. Many existing models used to track cultural skill formation approach the concept analytically as a linear progression with a finite destination, however, cultural identities evolve over time in response to novel or existing environments. Counselors are called to consider cultural competency as a continuum rather than destination in our learning.

International Students of Color: Members of the $45 Billion Club — Presented by Dr. Tremaine Leslie, Hilda George, Shu-Han Su, and Smruthi Vaishnavi Chintakunta

International students of color come from more than 100 countries across the world (Institute of International Education [IIE], 2021). Eleven percent hail from Latin America, the Caribbean, Africa, and the Sub-Saharan Regions (Open Doors, 2019). Additionally, eighty percent of international students studying in the US are students of color (Yao et al., 2019), and are enrolled in accredited, degree-granting institutions in the United States (IIE, 2021; Stein & Andreotti, 2016).

Poster Presentations – Doctoral Students

Poster sessions are designed to convey a research idea supporting a formal topic, which may include a novel approach to an area of study within the field of Counselor Education. Through Zoom, attendees will visit with one or as many of the presenters of the sessions as they want and engage in interactive dialogue. Participants may stay for only a few minutes and then move on to another presentation. Presenters will remain with their posters to discuss their dissertation topic, research findings and/or novel approaches with attendees. This program does not offer NBCC Clock Hours.

Examining the Relationship Between Misdiagnosis, The Legal System & Life Beyond It — Presented by Heidi Kiesling and Shannon Lott- SESSION CANCELLED 

This program will take a deep dive into the long-term effects of misdiagnosing individuals who have been incarcerated. This sample population will consist of people from various backgrounds – sexual orientation, race, socioeconomic status. This is a daily occurrence both globally & in the US. Young children are stigmatized and labeled as troublemakers at home, in the community & at school. Often leading to social isolation, misdiagnosis & has lasting repercussions for the individual’s health & quality of life.

DAY 4 - Friday, May 19, 2023

Mending Anxious Minds: Recommendations for Increasing the Use of Exposure-Based Procedures by Counselors – Presented by Elise Adamopoulos, Ellie Choate, and Robert Friedberg

Anxieties are rising in youth. Exposure-based treatment is effective for diverse patients, applicable to many settings and deliverable via multiple platforms. Unfortunately, exposure-based methods are infrequently implemented due to lack of training, misunderstanding, intolerance of uncertainty, and discomfort with distress. Thus, this poster yields updated information on exposure to enhance counselors’ training as well as mitigate mistaken assumptions and intolerance of uncertainty.


Creative Counseling Strategies for Children with Autism and Their Families — Presented by Ruth Ouzts Moore, Ph.D., NCC and Derya Sari

Children on the autism spectrum frequently experience issues with emotional dysregulation. Parents often feel challenged managing meltdowns and other emotional and behavioral issues. Creative strategies such as yoga, meditation, and breathing techniques can help children regulate their emotions. Also, the use of music, movement, and dance can help counselors and family members engage with the child. This presentation will provide creative strategies that can be implemented in counseling, as well as at home.

Understanding the Intersectionality in Mental Health Needs of Widows Across Cultures – Presented by Buthiana Alanoom

This presentation will include the presenter’s experience when working with widows internationally and locally. There were several commonalities between the two groups. Understanding the intersectionality of mental health needs between widows across cultures can shed light on issues on that counselors can focus on when offering their services to this population. Counselors must continuously work on their multicultural competency thus learning ways to work with diverse population in various settings.

Beyond the Simple User-Interface: Supervision for CBT with Youth — Presented by Hannah Zelcer and Robert Friedberg

CBT has deceptively simple theoretical concepts and practical techniques that are compelling to practitioners. However, there is a lackof adherence to theory and technical competence in community settings due to procedures being misapplied to incorrect targets,delivered at the wrong dose, and/or implemented in an incorrect sequence. Therefore, a competency-based supervision modelincorporating modeling, behavioral rehearsal, role-play, corrective feedback, and structured rating scales is presented in this poster.

Presented by Michelle Colarusso and Cody Dickson

Supervision is meant to foster growth, self-exploration, and skill building while learning and understanding how to be an effective counselor (Lazovsky & Shimoni, 2005; Osborn & Kelly 2010). While supervision is still required throughout the Counseling practice and relationship in all states, there have been various changes around supervision through telehealth and expectations for not only students, but also site supervisors. This presentation will review best practices for supervision through telehealth, expectations for students, site supervisors, and university supervisors along with screenings and informed consent for students to assess readiness.

Working in Tandem: A Co-Supervision Model – Presented by Dr. Tanupreet Suri and Katie Brammer

Supervision aims to generate mental health professionals who are proficient in their practice. Supervisors may choose different modalities of supervision, which come in the form of individual, triadic, or group supervision. The co-supervision model presented employs a collaborative process pertaining to co-supervision of co-learners. The presenters will inform the attendees of their integration of the co-supervision model and share their experiences with this practice.

Toward Transformation for Student Mothers in CES Doctoral Programs: Lessons from the COVID-19 Pandemic — Presented by Shannon Pugh, Joy Mwendwa, Kerbie Marc, Ketluimar Vallecillo-Samot, Karen Robinson-Yaw, Jessica Wiggs, and Victoria Evans-Fulton 

Counselor Education and Supervision (CES) doctoral student mothers were disproportionately impacted by the COVID-19 global pandemic, highlighting the need for increased support for these women to persist in their academic programs. . Using current literature review and case studies, presenters who are mothers and are currently in and or have been part of CACREP programs will highlight the pandemic’s disproportionate and provide strategies for working with CES doctoral student mothers.

The Counseling Compact became active on April 19, 2022 when Nebraska (the 10th state) enacted the Interstate Counseling Compact into law. Since then, the Counseling Compact has grown to include more than 20 states and is one of the fastest moving Occupational License compacts. This presentation will review how the compact was created, the current status of the compact, how to stay informed of compact developments, and how to professionally advocate for the compact.