Posts Tagged ‘environmental issues’

Ecopsychology in Counseling Certificate

October 4th, 2011
Accepting New Students!

Ecopsychology in Counseling Certificate
Lewis & Clark Graduate School of Education & Counseling
Portland, Oregon USA

Lewis & Clark’s Ecopsychology in Counseling Certificate explores the
relationships between mental health, wellbeing, and the natural environment and investigates ways counseling psychologists can contribute to conservation and sustainability. The courses draw on a robust body of scientific research—on topics such as the restorative value of green spaces for health and stress reduction and the psychological determinants of sustainability behaviors—and applies these insights in counseling and mental health practice. Our course work is also informed by environmental philosophy and ethics, cultural diversity, spirituality, the arts, and contemporary movements toward social and environmental justice.

The Certificate provides an opportunity for masters students to combine comprehensive training in fields such as community counseling and marriage, couples, and family therapy with an evidence-based, experiential and socially progressive ecopsychology curriculum. A ten-credit sequence of courses provides an introduction to ecopsychology and its basis in environmental philosophy, empirical research, and critical theory; applied training in wilderness / adventure therapy and ecotherapy; and an opportunity to explore advanced topics such as nature and child development, eco-cultural diversity, and social and environmental justice. An integrative and self-designed capstone project, such as a thesis or supervised practicum, completes the certificate. The Certificate program is also accepting applications from students and recent graduates of comparable counseling masters programs.

By situating the Ecopsychology in Counseling Certificate within the accredited programs of the Lewis & Clark Graduate School of Education and Counseling, we seek to achieve our mission of creating license- eligible and employable counselors who are prepared to effectively engage the pressing social and environmental issues of our time.

Program Details

Credits: 10 semester hours
Program Start: Spring only
View program of study in current course catalog

Key Dates

The first course in the 2012 Ecopsychology in Counseling Certificate Cohort begins in January 2012.
Application deadlines for counseling programs at Lewis & Clark are by program; contact the Graduate Admissions Office.
Deadline for application to the Ecopsychology Certificate 2012 cohort (for graduates and non-Lewis & Clark Students): 11/15/11.

Contact Information:

Ecopsychology in Counseling Certificate

Thomas Doherty, Co-director

Tod Sloan, Co-director

Graduate Admissions Office

Sustainable Self at Sundance

July 18th, 2010

explore green


Sustainable Self

Identity, Coping And Thriving In An Ecological Age




In this exclusive and timely weekend workshop and film premiere, Dr. Thomas Doherty, a specialist in the psychology of human-nature relationship and environmental issues, will lead participants in a journey of personal discovery and restoration within the beautiful Sundance Resort and the Wasatch Range.

Dr. Doherty—called by The New York Times “the most prominent American advocate of a growing discipline of ecopsychology” — will weave insights from neuroscience, environmental psychology, and mind-body health to create a model of personal sustainability.

Dr. Doherty’s Complete Bio on Explore Green

Participants are invited to the Sundance premiere of Play Againan award-winning documentary by Meg Merrill and Tonje Hessen Schei.

Click here to view the Play Again trailer


7:30 PM: The Promise of Ecopsychology

This 90-minute talk will discuss the psychology of environmental issues and human-nature relationships, with a focus on how people develop their beliefs and behaviors regarding the natural environment and ways to cope with stressful events like the current Gulf oil spill.


9:00 AM: Nature-Based Stress Reduction

This 2-hour workshop will provide hands-on experience of stress management techniques and mindfulness meditation in natural settings, with a focus on developing motivation and peace of mind regarding the current environmental crisis. The workshop will include an indoor orientation and non-strenuous outdoor activities.

1:00 PM: Positive Psychology and the Environment

In this 2-hour outdoor workshop participants will nurture themselves and celebrate their connections to nature. Dr. Doherty will highlight topics such as the positive and inspiring emotions and experiences people experience in beautiful natural settings, the history of peoples’ sense of place, and the possibility of an expanded “ecological self.”

8:00 PM: Sundance Premiere of “Play Again” with commentary by the film’s producer, Meg Merrill


11:00 AM: Grounded Action

This 90 Minute workshop is the capstone to our weekend. Participants will identify useful personal sustainability practices, and goals and strategies for effective environmental engagement that make sense in the context of their lives.


Sundance Resort Mt. Timpanogos int1


$250 per person
for all weekend activities and film premiere.

Sundance Resort will provide a special
discounted room rate for the weekend.

Call 1-801-223-4006 and ask for Mara Gabis
to book your reservation.


About Sundance Resort: Nestled at the base of Utah’s 12,000-foot Mt. Timpanogos, Sundance is a 6,000-acre community destination resort, dedicated to maintaining the balance of art, nature and community. Created by Robert Redford, Sundance is a haven for discovery and inspiration that offers diverse mountain recreation experiences year round. Only an hour’s drive from Salt Lake City and 45 minutes from Park City, Sundance is the resort you’ve dreamed about. Sundance features 95 rustically elegant mountain cottages and 10 mountain homes that echo the simplicity of the natural setting. Award-winning dining, a Native American-inspired spa, horseback riding, mountain biking and hiking and an Art Shack that features classes in painting, pottery and jewelry making make Sundance the perfect mountain getaway.

To visit the Sundance website, CLICK HERE

Ecopsychology earns national media attention

February 18th, 2010

from the Lewis & Clark news story.
See article below as it was originally published HERE.

Sustainable Psychology

In an era when concerns about the health of the natural world spur grand global events, like last year’s Copenhagen Climate Change Conference, some psychologists are helping bring ecological anxieties into perspective for average people.

Ecopsychology is a contemporary movement toward recognizing a connection between mental health and the natural environment. Ecopsychologists are discovering the benefits of connecting people to nature to treat depression, stress, and addictions.

Lewis & Clark Graduate School of Education and Counseling is one of only a handful of colleges and universities offering coursework in ecopsychology. Led by Counseling Psychology Instructor Thomas Doherty, Lewis & Clark’s ecopsychology studies area offers students the opportunity to focus on the relationship between mental health and environmental issues.

Doherty discusses the burgeoning discipline in this recent New York Times Sunday Magazine feature: “Is There an Ecological Unconscious?” The article calls Doherty “the most prominent American advocate” for ecopsychology and explores Doherty’s leadership in the growing field.

Learn more about ecopsychology studies at Lewis & Clark in this video, featuring Doherty and his students.

In an interview in the December issue of Alternative and Complementary Therapies, Doherty talks about some of the ways ecopsychologists differ from other therapists and explains the need for ecopsychology in the contemporary world.

“Many people need help balancing their sustainability values with their need to support their families or to advance their careers,” he said. “That’s where I tend to work. Recently, I have also been interested in ways to help people manage apprehensions about climate change or their ecological footprint, or so-called ‘eco-anxiety.’”

In addition to teaching, Doherty runs his own private practice and last year launched the academic journal Ecopsychology. The journal seeks to place psychology and mental health disciplines in an ecological context and recognizes the links between human health, culture, and the health of the planet. With its groundbreaking and diverse collaboration of psychotherapists, social science researchers, and contributors from other environmental-related fields, Ecopsychology is the only peer-reviewed journal of its kind.

Doherty also participated in the American Psychological Association’s climate-change task force, which last year produced a 230-page report urging psychologists to play a larger role in limiting the effects of climate change. Doherty was the only clinician on the task force, and he took the lead on addressing the psychosocial impacts of climate change. The final report pointed to many psychological barriers that have led to society’s slow reaction to climate change, including mistrust, denial, and habit.

“We looked at issues ranging from the known effects of events like hurricane Katrina to developing knowledge about the emotional and psychological effects of climate change messages in the media,” Doherty said. “We also discussed issues like diversity and social and economic disparities among those who are directly impacted by climate change.”

Beyond questions of climate change at the global level, ecopsychology also offers new perspectives on problems individuals face in their day-to-day lives.

Another recent New York Times article examines the ways in which families across the country are negotiating the steps they can take to save the planet. In the article, Doherty argues that people can’t help but to ask themselves questions about their impact on the environment.

“It touches every part of how they live: what they eat, whether they want to fly, what kind of vacation they want,” he said.

Between his commitments in the classroom, his practice, advising local and national organizations, and leading the national discourse on ecopsychology, Doherty is fully engaged in the work he loves. In a recent post on his blog, Personal Sustainability, Doherty wrote the following:

“My work is not easy but I go to bed every night feeling like I am part of the solution. Where do I get my energy? From the good people that I work with.”

Ecopsychology Journal Interview • Shierry Weber Nicholsen

September 3rd, 2009
Shierry Weber Nicholsen

Shierry Weber Nicholsen

In this wide-ranging interview, psychoanalyst and author Shierry Weber Nicholsen discussed ways she addresses environmental issues with clients in her psychotherapy practice, the background of her book The Love of Nature and the End of the World (2002), and her thoughts about the benefits of a psychoanalytic perspective on individual and group processes regarding environmental issues.

Nicholsen also spoke about her intellectual and professional development and current artistic pursuits as a stone carver and practitioner of the cello.

She spoke to Ecopsychology editor Thomas Joseph Doherty from her office in Seattle, Washington.

READ THE FULL article:

pdf September 2009 Shierry Weber Nicholsen. Ecopsychology: 110-117