Why have you chosen to join and get/stay involved in OCDA? What inspired you to take a leadership role?
I wanted to get more involved with OCDA after attending my first PDI. Being new to Oregon, I did not know anyone in the area working in career development. Everyone at the PDI was so welcoming, and it was such a rich experience. I was inspired to take a leadership role because I wanted to give back and contribute to our profession. Career development is such an important part of the human experience and something I truly value. I hope the work OCDA does contributes to the growth of others.
What do you most enjoy about career development work?
On the surface, career decision making seems fairly straight forward, but as career counselors we know this is not the case. It is a complex process that requires unpacking, and in my experience, it is this misunderstanding that can contribute to folks experiencing distress. I love being able to help others along in their journey through what is often the unknown. Hearing my clients' stories, helping them make sense of what they are experiencing, and moving forward is a privilege that I cherish.
Tell us about your organization and practice.
I am a career counselor in the Career Center at the University of Portland. I work with students, both one-on-one and in group settings to facilitate career discernment, self-exploration, and career research. Additionally, I work with students and alumni to navigate the emotional aspect of career exploration or transition. And finally, I work to develop and implement programming to meet such needs.
If you had to pick one favorite tool or resource you use regularly in your work with clients, what would it be and why?
At the risk of sounding clichéd, I think the counseling relationship is the most important tool in my work. There is not a tool or technique out there that can be effective without first having that trusting relationship as a foundation from which to build.
What's one interesting thing most people don't know about you?
I have eight brothers and sisters. Growing up with such a large family was often chaotic, but I think it has served me well in my practice.