As a licensed clinical psychologist in PA, I received M.A. from University of Delaware and Ph.D. from Virginia Commonwealth University, both in Counseling Psychology, after receiving a Bachelor degree of Law in China. I made the transformation because I was inspired and called to work with people who may encounter emotional/mental adversity at times. In addition to scholarly research, I have practiced under supervision in several counseling centers, including doctoral internship at Johns Hopkins University and postdoctoral fellowship at Eastern University. I mostly worked with college and graduate students, but also with clients from more diverse background in hospital and community mental health services. Currently, I work part-time with geriatric population in nursing homes and rehab centers as well as with college students in a university.
My theoretical orientation is an integrated approach that combines interpersonal theory, CBT, object relations, and family systems. However, I am a believer of common-factor theory in psychotherapy which means that some common factors (e.g. empathy, experience of the therapist, client’s motivation, etc.) in different approaches and evidence-based practices contribute to success of psychotherapy. I strive to connect with clients from the heart, helping establish a solid therapeutic relationship. Perceived security, relaxation and trust will further open up clients’ heart to deeply explore their inner feelings and thoughts. The common issues that my clients bring to therapy are anxiety, depression, dysfunctional family issues, relationship issues, eating concerns, etc. I see myself as a generalist, but I have also developed clinical interest that focuses on religion and spirituality, multicultural issues, marriage and family conflicts and emotion management.
Mutual understanding and empathy are powerful in connecting human beings across different cultures and languages. They also form the foundation of my counseling practice. I am blessed to be bilingual in both Mandarin Chinese and English, which has served my clients well. I hope that understanding, empathy and language can work together for us to connect with each other and work on those life puzzles together.