Athina Olsen, LCSW-C received her Master’s in Clinical Social Work from the University of Chicago, School of Social Service Administration and her Bachelor’s in Psychology from the University of Maryland.
For the past several years, Athina has worked in community mental health settings, serving people of all ages and with diverse psychosocial needs. During this time she also assisted in developing a DBT program for her agency, and served as the program’s lead trainer to provide DBT-related trainings to agency staff, interns, and others.
Athina has a particular interest in a contextual behavior approach to DBT, developed by Dr. Paul Holmes from the University of Chicago, which integrates Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) into the structure of DBT. This approach utilizes mindfulness and acceptance strategies to one’s private experiences (thoughts, emotions, memories, urges), emphasizes values, and the development of psychological flexibility. Athina has received years of direct mentorship from Dr. Holmes and continues to enhance her training and expertise in both DBT and ACT.
Athina also has nearly 10 years of pre-clinical experience working with children, adolescents and adults in an outdoor education setting, promoting self-esteem, confidence and leadership, unity and positive dynamics within groups, and environmental stewardship.
Athina believes in the ACT notion that we all struggle – and uses her own experiences to connect with others and build warm, trusting and meaningful relationships. Within this context, she believes healing and growth are possible.