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Conference Sessions



Friday workshop, 12:30-5 (will include breaks):


Dr. Debra Murray

Motivational Interviewing: Targeting Change


•      Review motivational interviewing key concepts in terms of spirit, principles, skills, and strategies

•      Apply the Stages of Change model in order to address ambivalence/resistance

Skill Development Objectives:

•      Practice communication strategies to reduce client resistance and resolve ambivalence (OARS)

•      Practice motivational interviewing strategies (decisional balance, rulers, and change plans)

•      Develop ability to recognize client readiness, and to negotiate a specific change plan that is acceptable and appropriate for the person.



Friday evening session, 6:30-8:30


Jeff Nerone, LPC

Documentary Film & Discussion 

Set inside a single room in Folsom Prison, THE WORK follows three men from outside as they participate in a four-day group therapy retreat with level-four convicts. Over the four days, each man in the room takes his turn at delving deep into his past. The raw and revealing process that the incarcerated men undertake exceeds the expectations of the free men, ripping them out of their comfort zones and forcing them to see themselves and the prisoners in unexpected ways. THE WORK offers a powerful and rare look past the cinder block walls, steel doors and the dehumanizing tropes in our culture to reveal a movement of change and redemption that transcends what we think of as rehabilitation.  



Saturday Keynote, Lunch:


Victoria Kress, Ph.D./LPCC-S, NCC, CCMHC

Counselor advocacy: Being an effective agent of change



Session 1, Saturday, 945-1045


Carol Smith, Ph.D., LPC, NCC

Status, Class & Poverty: Understanding social class and its influence on the counseling relationship and intervention

Social class and classism pervades our society (Liu, 2011 ) despite the fact that much of the United States often tries to overlook that class differences exist. Social class can influence what food we eat, what hobbies we may enjoy, as well as the values we hold and how we may view ourselves and others. Unlike race and gender, social class is invisible and has been a challenging construct to incorporate into counseling effectively. This session will explore how social class influences our perceptions of others by exploring our personal interactions with social class, gaining an understanding of the influence of social class on creating therapeutic relationships and appropriate interventions.



Karisse Callender, Ph.D., LPC, SAC

Using Single Case Research Designs to Measure Change in Counseling and Supervision

Counselors and supervisors are encouraged to actively participate in research and encouraged to design and conduct empirical research while abiding by institutional review boards, federal and state laws in relation to the conduct and reporting of research. Counselors and supervisors who engage in research are encouraged to make pertinent contributions to the knowledge and skill development of the profession. (ACA, 2016). Since counselors and supervisors are in a unique position to utilize various interventions with diverse clients, they should implement rigorous and flexible research practices to assess how these interventions influence outcomes. Counselors and supervisors should become knowledgeable and skilled in various research methodology, specifically single case research designs (SCRDs). In an attempt to bridge the practitioner-researcher gap, this presentation will teach participants a step-by-step approach that counselors and supervisors can implement to evaluate outcomes using a single case research design.



Victoria Kress, Ph.D./LPCC-S, NCC, CCMHC

Creative interventions for addressing nonsuicidal self-injury

In this presentation, attendees will learn about counseling approaches counselors can use with those who self-injure. Creative, engaging, interactive, and experiential counseling interventions that can be used in applying evidence-based counseling approaches across counseling settings will be provided.  Attendees will receive directions for applying the activities. 



Kathleen Harwood, MS, LPC, CPC

Childhood Emotional Neglect: What is it, how to treat it and how to avoid it

Childhood Emotional Neglect (CEN) is rarely identified and/or treated in counseling. This is in part due to CEN being a recently identified and discussed topic in psychological and counseling literature. CEN was researched, identified and written about by Dr. Jonice Webb in her book Running on Empty: Overcome Your Childhood Emotional Neglect" (2012) and following book, "Running on Empty No More."(2017) In her counseling practice and research she identified the types of parents who inadvertently emotionally neglect their children and the issues that emotionally neglected children struggle with as adults. In addition, she has developed useful strategies to help adults to access, identify and use their emotions as they learn to "re-parent" themselves. As a Certified parenting Coach I use Present Moment Parenting (PMP), a parenting method that uses emotional identification and attunement to help parents, especially those whose children have suffered trauma. PMP is an ideal tool for counselors to teach parents both as a preventive measure and also in re-parenting themselves if CEN has been identified.

Session 2, Saturday, 11-12


Jennalee Oefstedahl, LPC-IT

Baby Bumps: Counseling Women Before, During, and After Pregnancy

This session will examine the multifaceted needs of women before, during, and after pregnancy. Special attention will be given to the integrated medical and psychological components of care, as well as counseling interventions that meet those needs. The infant-mother attachment bond before, during, and after pregnancy will also be explored. 

Vicki Sepulveda, Ph.D, LPC, CSAC, NCC

Be an Ethical Practitioner, or Just Look like One

We know what the ACA Code of Ethics says, and we know about duty to warn, duty to protect, and other standards, or mandatory ethics. What about aspirational ethics, voluntary standards, and ways of carrying out our professional lives that are congruent with who we are as individuals? How do we triage our needs while triaging the needs of others? How can our self-care tactics be reflected in the services we provide as counselors? In this session, we will explore ethics at a deeper level in order to connect what we know as counselors and how to be our best versions of ourselves within our personal and professional lives. This will not be your conventional ethics presentation, so be prepared to reflect, reconnect, and recharge!

Judy Stevens, LPC

Lyme Disease 101 and Mental Health

The presenter will define Lyme Disease and the co-infections typically present. Participants will be given the opportunity to recognize early and late stages of Lyme Disease, to understand how and why it is misdiagnosed and referred to as "The Great Imitator" mimicking many mental health disorders, to apply assessments for differential diagnosis, to identify obstacles in treatment, and finally to support and to advocate for clients suspected/confirmed to have Lyme Disease.



Session 3, Saturday, 2-3


Chris Drosdick, MA-NCC, CSAC, ATR-BC, ICS

Treatment for Sex Trafficking Victims, Boys

Working with children who have been sexually abused and involved with sex trafficking is difficult for many reasons, but especially because youth are vulnerable and helpless against manipulative traffickers. Trauma-informed art therapy® was a major part in working with this family because of its effectiveness to address self-esteem, anxiety, safety and boundary issues, family communication, shame, gender role and healthy sexuality, and resiliency.

Stephanie Thorson-Olesen, Ph.D.; Ryan Frank

Vaping & E-Cigarettes: Are They A Healthy Alternative?

Vaping and e-cigarette use dramatically increased under the pretense that it is a “healthy alternative”, but is it? This interactive describes vaping and e-cigarette use and how it’s similar and different from traditional cigarette use. In addition, it will include the latest research, risk factors and motivational interviewing strategies.


Trauma-Informed Care at the End of Life

In an effort to optimize client-centered care when a patient presents for treatment, the recognition of the importance of an awareness of past and/or present trauma is vital in the overall assessment process.  The perspective of surviving trauma as a tool of resiliency rather than as a psychopathology is emphasized.  One of the most profound periods of existential uncertainty is at the end of a loved one’s life.  The purpose of this training is to present an understanding and appreciation for these separate, but related, topics in order to assist clinicians in providing best practices for identified patients and their significant others alike.

Jessica Shaw, MS, LPC, NCC

Technology Addiction and Teens

Can we create a healthy balance? Technology is everywhere, and it is not going away. In this session, we will gain a deeper understanding of what is technology addiction? What makes technology so addicting? We will dive into the internet, gaming, and social media.  We will explore the risks involved, the neurobiology of addiction and the major impact that technology is having on our teens.  This interactive workshop will hopefully leave you with tips and tricks of how to 'unplug'!



Session 4, Saturday, 315-415


Paul Deutsch, MS, LPC, CPT; Travis Michaels, BA, SAC-IT

Foundations of Feelings and Emotions

Understanding the foundations and differences of emotions and feelings can be difficult for clinicians as they are two very subjective constructs and often times the differences and definitions of the two exist in a gray area. It is important to understand the differences between the two so as to increase the therapeutic relationship with clients and other practitioners.



Karisse Callender, Ph.D., LPC, SAC; Sydney Snyder; Halie Ecker; Diane Heighway

The Quality of Life of Substance Abuse Counselors: What Counselors and Supervisors Need to Know

Substance abuse counselors (SACs) tend to work with more risky, demanding clients who are more likely to present with a co-occurring traumatic experience. According to Bride, Hatcher and Humble (2009), SACs are highly likely to be exposed to secondary trauma and are not adequately trained to deal with the effects of working with a traumatized population. SACs also work in an environment of high client (and staff) turnover, and high counselor burnout rates. In addition, SACs are highly susceptible to psychological distress and burnout as a result of their work (Baldwin-White, 2016; Giordano et at., 2016). Although this evidence exists, there is a limited research investigating the professional quality of life of SACs to understand their lived experience working with clients. This presentation will provide an overview of the research project and data with recommendations for suitable interventions to be used in clinical supervision with SACs that may mitigate stressors and enhance career sustaining behaviors.



James Lammers, MA, LPC

Workplace Equality and Struggles for the Transgender/Gender Non-Conforming Employee

There has been an increase of training regarding transgender/gender non-conforming (TGNC) individuals as clients, but what about as co-workers and peers? Come learn the advances within the employment world for gender identity equality along with the subtle areas & micro-aggressions that are still causing distress to TGNC individuals within the workplace.

Amy Evans, PhD., LPC (WI), LPCC (MN)


Ethical Decision Making In Our Personal Lives: Managing Professional Questions in Personal Settings

 In professional roles, we prepare to respond to a variety of different questions we might be asked by the clients, family members, colleagues and others. How do you respond when you are asked questions in your personal life that relate to the counseling field? How does your professional role impact your personal life? Our interactive discussion will cover ethical considerations for responding in our personal lives. Included will be personal reflection time and practice of a motivational interviewing technique that can be applied in these often perplexing interactions



Friday CE’s: 4.5

Saturday CE’s: 5

Total CE’s for the conference: 9.5