I am a clinical psychologist running a primarily forensic group practice in Lafayette, Louisiana.
What did you do after graduating from USM and what are you doing now?
After graduating from USM, I worked as a Drug Abuse Program Coordinator at the Federal Correctional Complex in Oakdale, LA. I am now a Clinical Psychologist in private forensic practice in Lafayette, Louisiana. My private practice focuses primarily on forensic evaluation but I maintain a treatment caseload of adults, adolescents, and children with trauma histories, mental health management difficulties, and behavioral issues. I also conduct contracted evaluations of veterans seeking compensation and services, and I serve on the Louisiana State Board of Examiners of Psychologists as the Complaints Coordinator for the ethics committee.
How has your education in your doctoral program at USM and work in the lab helped prepare you for what you are doing now/career?
In my work with offender and correctional populations, very little is “certain.” Working in the lab provided opportunities to discuss important issues, relevant research, and options to learn more. I learned how to become comfortable with ambiguity and to discuss openly and clearly what was still unknown. The lab allowed me to develop a process for critical thinking in all areas and for intentional work with clients. These are invaluable skills when confronted with court testimony.
What did you enjoy most about your time at USM and in the research lab?
The best part of working in the lab was having a team of other students and faculty who could use their individual skill sets to develop solutions and to support each other. Having other lab students in my dissertation defense was an unbelievable source of support for me!
What words of wisdom would you provide to those thinking about studying counseling psychology at USM?
I have had the opportunity to work in a number of other regions, and USM’s reputation is unmatched. The training I received has prepared me well for clinical work, and the alumni support around the country provides for networking almost everywhere!