Marriage and Family Therapy Program Prepares Students for Rewarding Careers
Ellen Wilson '13 is enrolled in Pfeiffer’s Marriage and Family Therapy Program and works with the Pfeiffer Institute for Marriage and Family Therapy, a community-based therapy and training clinic that offers counseling serviced to individuals, couples and families. She is a Charlotte native and holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Davidson College.
Why do you want to become a marriage and family therapist?
An internship during my junior year of college at Broughton Hospital in Morganton sparked an interest in clinical psychology and family therapy. After graduating, I worked for five years at Thompson Child and Family Focus, a psychiatric residential treatment facility where I became acutely aware of the impact that early childhood attachment trauma has on emotional and mental health in later childhood and adolescence. My work with the children at Thompsons inspired me to continue my education so I could better serve individuals, couples and families suffering from attachment-related injuries.
How did you discover Pfeiffer’s Marriage and Family Therapy program?
While researching counseling and psychology programs on the Internet, I discovered the Marriage and Family Therapy Program at Pfeiffer. I attended an information session and became confident that the program would be a good fit for me because it would allow me the flexibility to continue working while enrolled in a rigorous graduate program.
How has working for the Pfeiffer Institute enhanced your experience?
I’ve had the opportunity to intern for two semesters at the Pfeiffer Institute where I have had an extremely meaningful experience. Through individual supervision, group supervision and collaboration with my peers and mentors, I have further developed my therapeutic skills and learned more about the systemic nature of the challenges and issues people face, which will impact positively the quality of my counseling skills.
How has Pfeiffer prepared you for the future?
My time at Pfeiffer has equipped me with the knowledge to know that the field of therapy is ever-evolving. I must constantly further my education by reading, researching, and collaborating with others in the field, while practicing self-care and self-growth.