“I have always had a personal interest in promoting culturally-informed and responsible healthcare services and I knew that becoming a psychologist would provide me with the opportunity to work towards a solution.”
What was your path to becoming a therapist?
As an Afro-Caribbean immigrant, I am drawn to issues affecting minoritized groups, immigrants, and underserved populations. I have clinical experience working with asylum seekers, US veterans, and cancer survivors. I have always had a personal interest in promoting culturally-informed and responsible healthcare services and I knew that becoming a psychologist would provide me with the opportunity to work towards a solution. This led me to pursue a doctorate in psychology as well as a postdoctoral fellowship specializing in geropsychology (which addresses mental health issues in older adults). I bring education and clinical experience to our partnership while you bring the expertise of self. Together, we work to learn from your past and envision what you want for your future.
What should someone know about working with you?
The first visit with a new therapist is very important and questions are natural. In the intake session, I spend time understanding the reasons you came to therapy. During our first meetings, we discuss the proposed treatment, the therapeutic objectives, and the possible outcomes. I work from an integrative perspective and rely on a broad range of techniques, including narrative, cognitive-behavioral, and family systems interventions. Our work together may include goal-setting and, sometimes, homework outside of sessions.
What advice would you give to someone who is hesitant to try therapy?
Choosing to take the first step in speaking with a professional about the difficulties you are facing is courageous and important! I provide a safe and empathic space where you can delve into your struggles and collaborate on a plan to address these challenges, empowering you in the process. I help my clients identify and develop the skills, tools, and inner resources they need to achieve emotional balance and well-being. My mission is to foster a secure, comfortable, confidential, and professional environment where the client can view me as a true partner, counting on the services they need with the assurance of privacy and clinical excellence.
What are you most excited about within the evolving mental health landscape?
I am most excited about the evolution of multicultural competence and the changes in how it’s addressed in academic institutions. My perspective is that multicultural competency is an ongoing endeavor where one adopts the role of humility, openness to learning, and continued introspection. I invite discussions of the salient aspects of one’s identity, as we examine the multiple intersecting factors that make us human. These include gender, race, religion, socioeconomic status, age, and sexual orientation.
Have you done any research-based work that you found particularly exciting? How does it inform your practice today?
My research focuses on examining the barriers to mental health services felt across different populations. Along with economics and lack of access, stigma is a steadfast obstacle when it comes to asking for help. My studies inspire me to collaborate with other providers and better determine the methods that demystify and destigmatize therapy. In my personal life, I work to educate family and friends about symptoms of mental illness and correct misconceptions.
“I bring education and clinical experience to our partnership while you bring the expertise of self.”