Kimberly Crow M.A. ’15 has been named student commencement speaker
March 31, 2015
Kimberly Crow MA ’15 has been named the 2015 student commencement speaker. Crow is a student in the Professional Mental Health Counseling—Addictions program.
She graduated from Willamette University in 2004 with a B.A. in Theatre. Before coming to Lewis & Clark she had varied experience in both the public and private sector, working for nonprofits, multinational corporations, and local small business. Her passion for helping others is equaled by her passion for creative expression—Crow has worked for years as a freelance dramaturg at theaters in Washington, D.C. and around Portland.
Crow grew up in San Jose, California and left for Salem, Oregon in 2000. She has now lived in Portland for almost 10 years. In her free time she enjoys reading books, metalsmithing, writing, traveling, and spending time with her cat, Buster.
Lewis & Clark: Why did you want to become a mental health professional?
Kimberly Crow: I like working with people and thinking creatively. My mom will soon be retiring from a 45-year career in school counseling. Growing up, I enjoyed hearing about aspects of her work, but didn’t want to follow directly in her footsteps. I also have also been managing depression since my late teens and that definitely influenced my decision to pursue work in this field.
Why did you choose to pursue this program at Lewis & Clark?
I chose Lewis & Clark for its progressive, social justice-oriented perspective. I also knew that I wanted a degree with a clinical emphasis.
I hadn’t originally considered addictions counseling, but it has turned out to be a good fit. The emphasis on co-occurring addiction and mental health is a good lens for me. I really enjoy working with concerned significant others and family members who are dealing with both active addictions and mental health issues or the legacy of these issues within the family system.
Where do you hope to work after graduation? What impact do you hope to have on the lives of clients, and your professional field?
I love working with a variety of people. Immediately after graduation, I’d like to gain more experience in a clinical mental health setting. I like hospitals more than most people, so I’d like to try working in in-patient or intensive out-patient. Eventually, I’d like to go in to private practice. However, my Internship has been at a small group private practice and it made me more aware of the challenges I will face when I do decide to go out on my own.
Can you reflect on some of your favorite aspects of grad school?
Life in grad school has been great, especially the people I’ve met here. I felt so energized by learning. My peers seemed to respect me for my thoughts and contributions and it has meant a great deal to me. My favorite place on campus is in the parking lot under the trees and the estate pool in the summer. My favorite class has been my Practicum and Internship supervision group because it is such an honor to be witness to the growth that has occurred there, both from the clinicians and the clients.
Can you tell us more about your cat Buster?
Buster is a really fabulous cat and an important member of my family. He’s top notch, and very popular with the L&C students who’ve met him.