Kristin Sellke Koepke
I graduated from Southwestern in 2002 with my MA in Art Therapy. Since then I have lived in Illinois, Tennessee, and Wisconsin. I have spent most of my career working with children and adolescents, many of them in the foster care system. I am now an independent contractor in a private practice just outside of Milwaukee, Wisconsin. I continue to work with children and adolescents, as well as adults. I have developed an interest and further training in attachment therapy and looking at how attachments effect the relationships we have with others. This continues my work with foster children as well as those that have been adopted. I continue to use my art therapy skills and I am a Licensed Professional Counselor. I just finished up an art therapy group with adults creating mandalas. The clinic I work in is the only licensed clinic in Wisconsin that is holistic and does Intensive Outpatient Program for adult drug and alcohol. Most of my colleagues are certified in AODA and I work in collaboration with them through my art therapy skills, knowledge, and board certification, including being a holistic for the IOP. The clinic also has 4 psychiatrists and we have regular collaboration with them. It is a great working environment that is multi-faceted and we use a team approach.
I married in 2007 and have lived in various states due to my husbands work. We have 3 dogs including Oscar, our fawn pug, that I got when I was a second year student at SWC. We have been in the Milwaukee area for the past 4 years and enjoy it very much. I love being an aunt of 2 nieces and 1 nephew. And I continue to have my passion for travel and do it as much as possible. The photo above is of myself on safari in South Africa, September 2012.
What Do I Carry with Me From SWC? : There is such an importance to participate in your own therapy while in school at SWC. First of all it allows you to experience what it is like to be the client. Beyond that, it is super important to know what your issues are to understand the dynamics of transference and counter-transference. Your personal therapy will help in that professional manner. The other large learning experience is the importance of self-care. If you don’t find ways to take care of yourself, you will burn-out and leave this profession. I have seen it happen many times with new clinicians. In order to survive in this career path, you have to instill self-care techniques and know when you have had too much and when it is time to take a day of self-care. When you do not recognize that, it becomes easy to make large mistakes in session that can become a liability.
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