Access Institute is proud to introduce you to our 2019-2020 class of postgraduate fellows. Whether serving clients at our Hayes Valley Clinic, working with children at seven public elementary schools, or providing comprehensive treatment to seniors at the Bayview Adult Day Health Center, our fellows are committed to making a positive impact on the mental health of our community. We asked the fellows what inspires their work, and have shared their responses below.
Anaïs Wong, Psy.D.
"Whether psychotherapy or psychological assessment, these services have the potential to have a profound impact on people’s sense of self and hope for a better life."
Genevieve Vidal, MSW
"The Elder track at the Adult Day Health Center allows individuals the chance to reflect on their life and process some of the physical, emotional, and relational changes that may emerge with aging. It’s so rare for therapy services to be offered to an older population - and rarer still for the therapy to be grounded in psychoanalytic thinking. In the work I do at the ADHC, I aspire to create a safe, therapeutic atmosphere that makes it possible to uncover unconscious parts of the self from childhood that continue to impact individuals into their elder years."
Emily Semow, Psy.D.
"For many of my child clients, being at school can be a very stressful experience. I think this experience becomes more manageable and more positive when they know that they have an adult at school who will consistently provide undivided attention and an accepting space to express whatever feelings they have. I also like that by working in a school, I have easy access to teachers and administration, which allows me to make more of an impact on my child clients’ environments."
Lucia Sekoff, MSW
"As part of the intake team I am one of the first people to connect with those seeking mental health services. I often encounter individuals who have been met with many obstacles in finding therapeutic support and who feel disgruntled and disheartened by the lack of affordable, quality care. It’s a joy to be able to help people finally connect to a place that offers rich psychodynamic work which will support them in their lives moving forward."
Corey Datz-Greenberg, MSW
"We live in a society that makes it hard for dependent seniors to break out of isolation. That's what makes the work of the Bayview ADHC so inspiring. With us, they can process the challenges of getting older and being dependent on others more than they would like to be. They talk about how they can face the real challenges and still maintain their sense of purpose in life and their sense of wonder. Together, we unearth deep sources of validation for their efforts to create supportive communities for themselves, both at the ADHC and outside."
José Buenrostro, MFT
"My work at Sanchez Elementary School is important because I get to provide therapeutic services to a vulnerable population of children and their families who are struggling to settle in a new life in the United States. Access Institute's partnership with these schools makes this work possible."
Roxane Cohanim, M.A., A.M.F.T.
"It feels meaningful to be providing low-cost services to the community, particularly during a time and in a place where mental health services can be costly and difficult to access. Connecting deeply with patients, supporting them as they move through their lives, and helping them overcome challenges to engage with the world more freely and fully is, to me, the most gratifying and inspiring way to serve our community."
Melinda Gottesman, Psy.D.
"Through school-based work, we are providing students with services in which they otherwise would not be able to access. Working at schools also provides us with a passageway into our clients’ everyday lives, helping us understand and make sense of the ways in which they function in the world."
Rebecca Weinstein, Psy.D.
"It feels humbling and meaningful entering into this community to offer thoughtful care to its senior members, who have suffered immense loss of relationships and physical functioning. It feels important to hear their stories and do whatever it takes to connect on a human level."
Yaron Aronowicz, MSW
"Our city schools serve children and families who experience systemic racism, xenophobia, poverty and complex trauma. It is so important to give these children a therapeutic space and relationship in which they can have a real connection to a safe, caring adult. It’s just as important to help the adults at the school think about and make space for the pain the families they serve have experienced and to nurture these kids’ astounding capacities to learn and form meaningful relationships despite their hardships."
Greta Klaber, MA
"The treatment is important for such a wide variety of reasons, but broadly it is a place where people can feel connected to something, listened to, and supported through difficult times in their lives. It can be a beautiful thing to accompany someone through processes of change."