Leslie Gerrard

What do I do at the Counseling Center?

I am a licensed psychologist and the coordinator of our Sexual Trauma Empowerment Program (STEP). I work with individual clients with a variety of concerns, I co-facilitate the STEP support group, participate in training as a supervisor and professional development facilitator, and engage in a variety of outreach activities. I also coordinate our wilderness therapy program and am the owner of one of the animal-assisted therapy dogs, Wicket. 

What's it like to work with me?

I work with clients from a collaborative approach, meaning that we work together to identify goals that fit with what they are hoping to gain from their experience at the Counseling Center. My theoretical perspective is interpersonal process oriented, and I am interested in patterns of interpersonal interactions that have developed over the lifespan and may influence a person’s current wellbeing. I also work from a strengths-based approach, which means that I focus on what is working well for clients and try to empower them in their lives. My training has been heavily influenced by multicultural and feminist perspectives and my time working in wilderness settings has led to a strengths-based, holistic approach with a focus on culture and community.

What do I do at JMU outside of the Counseling Center?

At JMU, I coordinate efforts to provide support at prevention and awareness-building events facilitated by different groups across campus (Take Back the Night, etc.). In an effort to address issues associated with sexual assault at JMU, I serve on various committees, teams, and task forces, including but not limited to the Title IX Task Force, Campus Coalition Against Sexual Assault, Dukes Step Up (Bystander Intervention), and Sexual Assault Response Team. I also collaborate with University Recreation in our joint effort to plan and facilitate the wilderness therapy program.