Counselors play a critical role in keeping people and communities healthy. At Menninger, with the support of donors to The Menninger Clinic Foundation, we are training new counselors to care for the increasing number of adults and adolescents living with anxiety, depression and other mental health conditions.
In 2021, Derry and Wendy Seldin endowed a counseling training fellowship in honor of counselor John Hart, PhD, who treated Derry with care and compassion during his stay at Menninger. The John Hart, PhD, LPC-S, Licensed Professional Counselor Fellowship enables those with a master’s degree in psychology, counseling or a related field to earn licensure as counselors.
During the rigorous 18-month program, fellows rotate through Menninger’s inpatient, outpatient and community-based programs to experience the full continuum of care. They also participate as members of interprofessional teams, attend educational seminars, and attend Grand Rounds held by Baylor College of Medicine’s Menninger Department of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences.
Current fellows Erin MacInerney and Elizabeth Kelati share the one-of-a-kind educational experience they have had through the Hart LPC Fellowship.
Erin MacInerney, MEd
As a journalism major at The University of Texas Austin, MacInerney gravitated to stories related to mental health. She went on to earn a psychology degree at UT and then a master’s in counseling from Vanderbilt University, where she worked side-by-side with future doctors, nurse practitioners, and pharmacists as part of a certificate program in interprofessional learning. Erin says she has enjoyed Menninger’s similar interdisciplinary environment and the support she has received from her colleagues in mental health.
“On any given week, we are getting multiple hours of people talking through our cases with us, helping us gain insight into what is going on with the clients,” MacInerney says. “I feel like this is something that not a lot of new counselors get, and it really sets the Menninger fellowship program apart from any other job right out of graduate school.”
Elizabeth Kelati, MEd
Kelati came to Menninger after spending eight years helping kids from low-income backgrounds get into college. She loved giving students a space to find themselves and figure out their next steps. But she wanted to do more. “While I was there advising them academically, I felt like I was missing a part of who they were.” Through the LPC Fellowship, Kelati says she’s learning firsthand from experts in the field about how to create a non-judgmental space for people to heal and to find themselves, and how to care for people of different ages and mental health needs.
"There’s a level of confidence that comes with, ‘I’ve done all these different things!’” Kelati says. “It is certainly not an experience that everyone gets to have, working in the different levels of care. I just think it is really unique.”