*Note* This scheduling program was not designed by folks who do a lot with APA Style and unfortunately it defaults to listing authors in alphabetical order. We cannot fix this for this online schedule, but the author orders are posted in the order submitted in the printed program available via pdf here.
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Saturday, March 7 • 1:05pm - 2:05pm
First Generation Immigrant Therapists: Transformation, Resistance, and Personal Growth

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This symposium will be led by four first generation immigrant women-therapists from varied cultural backgrounds. Our presentations will focus on challenges we encountered, and the ways our experiences have transformed us and encouraged personal voice and growth. Because of an increase in immigration, growing number of first generation (recent) immigrant women enter into mental health field, often seeking to improve the lives of their communities (Yakushko, 2009). Their work often focuses on issues of justice related to their community experiences, including racism, poverty, xenophobia, gender violence, and other forms of marginalization and oppression (Yakushko & Espin, 2010). Among key areas discussed by presenters the focus will be on juxtaposition of therapists’ own experiences of immigrant adaptation including clinical work in a second language and the way it contributes to and creates feelings of otherness as well as the role of language as the carrier of implicit cultural messages. Personal and professional identity development from a perspective of an immigrant therapist in training will be also discussed focusing on aspects of establishing personal and professional identity as a therapist, immigration as a possibility for maturation and mending of loss of culturally and personally grounding internally guiding structures, and mourning the loss of the home country. In addition, we will discuss experiences of migration as a psychological process and review its various aspects such as status of immigration, age, motivation to leave the home country, family related responsibilities, and the impact of loss of familiar environment. Lastly, we will focus on issues related to training and supervision with immigrant women who are training to be psychologists.

Saturday March 7, 2015 1:05pm - 2:05pm PST