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Psych Club: Counseling in Action

Release date: April 16, 2008

Mr. Raymond Green, a licensed clinical professional counselor, presented two case vignettes in which he role-played with Joanne Hohn, a registered nurse.  The first situation involved a freshman dealing with adjustment issues such as missing her family and struggling to make new friends. Green acknowledges that this scenario “happens quite frequently.” He often finds it helpful to give home assignments to clients that are later discussed in the therapy sessions. According to Green, “Moving forward is the purpose of therapy and home assignments assist with that.”

           

The second vignette depicted an intake session with a junior who had been referred to the counseling center for problems with alcohol. Throughout the session, Green inquired about such things as drinking habits, family history, and personal goals. After the session was complete, Green revealed one of the major difficulties associated with intake sessions. Although it is necessary to take some notes, “some people find it very offensive.” To remedy this problem, he tries to minimize note taking by making with brief bullet points and a lot of listening. One student asked about the challenge of clients who are in denial about their addiction. Green believes that it is helpful to “acknowledge their opinion, but voice your concerns.”

 

In concluding the event, Green spoke about Goucher’s Health and Counseling Center. The center has four counselors on staff. Green sees about five to seven students a day. Joanna Hohn has seen an increase over the last few years in students coming in for counseling services. She stated, “I am really encouraged to see that students are utilizing our resources more.” Sessions are free for students and they offer referrals. Green describes the center as “a safe place to come and talk.” When asked about common issues seen in the therapy session, he spoke of adjustment problems, eating disorders, self esteem issues, and substance abuse. However, Green happily offered, “If you just want to talk about how bad your week was, come on in!”