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3rd Year Doctoral Cohort

Students

Top Row - Lindsay Vik, Aishwarya (Ash) Joshi (Meridian) and Kelsey Sarasqueta-Allen (Meridian). Front Row - Amirah Nelson and Seneka Arrington.

Seneka Arrington

Hello everyone! My name is Seneka Arrington and I am excited to begin my third year as a doctoral student at Idaho State University. Roar! Bengals Roar! I moved across the country from the sunshine state of Florida to the mountainous state of Idaho. I am a licensed professional counselor and looking forward to working in counseling education.

I was born in San Diego, California to military parents and have one younger sister. My early childhood was a typical middle-class environment circa the 1980’s. In 1997 my family relocated to Yokosuka, Japan, where I spent my coming-of-age years. Upon graduation in 2002, I was afforded the opportunity to attend the great Bethune-Cookman University in Daytona Beach, FL. I proudly engaged as a member of the BCU choir, Sigma Tau Delta national english honor society and cheerleading captain. I graduated in 2006 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in English and a minor in Pre-Law. Excitedly, I earned a Master of Science degree in Marriage and Family Therapy from Stetson University in 2010.

My academic and field experiences have allowed me to become proficient in marriage and family therapy, mental health, and school counseling. I am an active member of the American Counseling Association, as I serve as a member of the governing council. I have served on the executive board of the National Employment Counseling Association for eleven (11) years in the roles of graduate student representative, secretary/treasurer, president, and past president. I am also the doctoral representative for Phi Omicron Chi, ISU’s chapter of Chi Sigma Iota.

My research interests include homelessness, humanism, and interpersonal and systemic intersectionality. I am optimistic about this year and look forward to working with colleagues and students alike. 

Seneka Arrington, LPC, GCDF

Doctoral Student/Graduate Teaching Assistant

Idaho State University

"Roar! Bengals Roar!"

Aishwarya Joshi

Hey Everyone! My name is Ash and I am a third-year doctoral candidate. I am from India, where I received my Bachelor of Arts degree and I received my Master of Science degree in Criminal Justice & Forensic Psychology from Tiffin University, Ohio, and Master of Arts degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from Heidelberg University, Ohio. I am a licensed professional counselor in Ohio and Idaho and a board-certified counselor by NBCC. 

My research interests include ‘internationalism’ within counselor education, intersectionality and racist nativism in Counselor Education and Supervision, marginalization of Black women in STEM fields and, access to mental health education in Kenya. 

In my free time, I enjoy traveling with my friends, hiking, mud races, playing tennis, dancing, and attending pop/rock and k-pop concerts. Please feel free to reach out if you have any questions.

Email: joshaish@isu.edu

Ash she/her/hers

Amirah Nelson

Hi there! My name is Amirah (she/they), and I must say this is bittersweet *tear* that this will be my final year at ISU as a doctoral candidate, soon to be counselor educator! I am originally from Atlanta, GA and I ended up in Pocatello, by way of Newport, RI. I have my master’s in Holistic Counseling and a certificate of advanced graduate studies in Creative & Expressive Arts. I also have my bachelor’s in Psychology and Biology with a concentration in pre-medicine from my alma mater, Thee Jackson State University (thee I love) from Jackson, MS.

I thoroughly enjoy working with all populations and I am currently providing outpatient counseling services to clients in the Pocatello community that struggle with substance use as well as other clients experiencing mental health issues.  In the past, I have worked with various populations that consisted of providing inpatient counseling services to clients with substance use and other mental health diagnoses. Furthermore, I have provided in-home counseling services to families, experience working with adolescents in residential, and I worked as a Head Start teacher, which sparked my initial interest in counseling.

I have an active research agenda that consists of anything trauma related, specifically race-based trauma. As a doctoral candidate and future counselor educator that is a Black Muslim woman, I consistently utilize my social identities to model and facilitate conversations as it relates to advocacy and systemic issues in our world. Thus, my scholarly interests incorporate multicultural and social justice concerns such as advocating for, with, and on behalf of marginalized populations.

I am a proud recipient of the Dr. Daya & Mrs. Usha K. Sandhu Multicultural Counseling/Diversity Student Research Award from the Association for Multicultural Counseling and Development (that is a lot!). This research grant will help fund my dissertation topic that looks at how to support and retain Black women that are counselor educators and supervisors at predominately white institutions. In the past, I received the Counselor Education and Supervision fellowship where I reviewed manuscripts on research, theory development, and program application to help prepare future counselors in various clinical settings. For this reason, my passion and experiences within our profession inspires me to consistently cultivate relationships with peers and mentors.

When I am not engaging in school and/or professional roles, I spend as much time as I can with loved ones, especially my daughter Laila. I also enjoy reading, traveling, and exercising in my free time and those who know me, know I love being silly, laughing, and never miss an opportunity to turn down food, especially brunch! This has been quite the journey for me and the time I have spent here in our program has meant so much to me that I cannot believe it will be over soon. This has been such an enriching experience and it only feels like yesterday, I was sending in my first bio for our website. So, if you have any questions or comments about our program or in general, please reach out to me. I would love to chat with you!

Kelsey Sarasqueta-Allen

Hi! My name is Kelsey (she/hers), and I am enthusiastic to begin my third year as a doctoral candidate at Idaho State – Meridian.

I am originally from the agricultural central valley of California and have resided in the Boise region for the past 10 years. My educational background includes degrees from Boise State University (BA: Ethnic Studies, BS: Psychology, minor: Basque Studies) and Northwest Nazarene University (MS: Marital, Couple, and Family Counseling). I am passionate about macrosystemic advocacy to dismantle legislative oppression; this transcends into my identity in the counseling profession, as my previous service includes serving as the Public Policy & Legislation Chair for state and national counseling organizations (Idaho Mental Health Counselors Association, Idaho Counseling Association, and Association for Adult Development and Aging). Proudly, I received the AADA 2020 Government Relations award and was recently a 2019-2021 WWAMI AHEC Scholar. I hold dual licensure as an LPC and LAMFT in the state of Idaho and my clinical population foci include marital, couple, and family counseling in college and rural Idaho settings. My research passions include social justice advocacy, community organizing, rural mental health, interdisciplinary healthcare collaboration, spirituality, and public policy engagement.

Outside of counseling, I enjoy Basque folk dancing, SUP on the river, and backpacking. Please do not hesitate to contact me with any questions: kelseysarasquetaa@isu.edu

Lindsay Vik

Hey there! My name is Lindsay Vik (she/her) and I’m a third year doctoral candidate at ISU Pocatello campus. While I’ve been enjoying Poky for a couple of years now, I am originally from South Dakota where I completed my BS in human development and family studies, with a minor in psychology. After graduation, I moved to Omaha, Nebraska to complete my MS in Clinical Mental Health Counseling.

While I've worked with folks of all ages, much of my clinical experience has been in college counseling centers. Some of my research and clinical interests include adventure based counseling and ecotherapy, creative interventions in supervision and teaching, wellness, intersectionality and identity development. My primary focus within the doctoral program has been marriage, couple, and family courses and exploring a systemic view of our world.

To maintain balance in my life, you can often find me outdoors hiking, camping, or paddling. I’m usually enjoying these spaces with my partner and our dog, Willow. I also love spending time with friends and family and drinking hot tea while reading or embroidering at home. Please feel free to reach out with any questions you may have, I'd love to chat!

Lindsay M. Vik, LPC, NCC 

she/hers

Doctoral Candidate

Counselor Education and Counseling

Idaho State University

 

2nd Year Doctoral Cohort

Students

Back row: Amanda Arnold (Meridian), Kimberly Leishman and Jorge Lopez (Meridian). Front Row - Zaoxuan (Daisy) Zhou and Hannah Brinser.

Amanda Arnold

Hi! My name is Amanda Arnold and I am a second-year doctoral student based at the Meridian campus. I grew up in the California Bay Area but have called Arizona home for the last 6 years. I am a proud Sun Devil and earned my Bachelor’s degrees and Master’s degree (specializing in Clinical Mental Health Counseling) from Arizona State University. I am a Licensed Professional Counselor in Idaho and my clinical experiences include working with survivors of interpersonal trauma, EMDR therapy, and play therapy. My research interests include graduate student mental health (specifically in counselor training programs), the study of interpersonal trauma, and supervisory and counseling relationship dynamics. During my Master's program I was a member of the CareerWISE research program and studied the impact of race and gender within STEM degree programs, the impact of graduate STEM education on mental health, and the role of interpersonal support in STEM degree completion. Through this work, I have become passionate about recognizing privilege and oppression in my own life and dismantling oppressive systems through research and advocacy efforts. In this upcoming year, I look forward to continuing my development as an educator, supervisor, researcher, and counselor.

Outside of academia, I enjoy cycling classes, DIY home projects, traveling, and spending time with friends and family (especially my dog and cat). I am also an avid consumer of fiction novels, true crime podcasts, and reality TV. If you have any questions or would like to chat more, I would love to connect with you!

Hannah Brinser

Hello! My name is Hannah, and I am a second-year doctoral student here at Idaho State University. I grew up in a small agriculture town in south-central Washington (pop. 500). After high school, I completed a B.S. in Psychology from Western Washington University in Bellingham, Washington. During this time, I volunteered as a crisis counselor and worked as a community support specialist where I helped students with disabilities transition out of high school and gain career-related skills. After graduating, I earned my M.A. in School Counseling from Gonzaga University in Spokane, Washington (go Zags!!) While I have experience working with a wide variety of students in K-12 settings, I am especially passionate about working with middle and high school students.

I believe strongly in the unique role and opportunity school counselors have in creating meaningful change within schools and communities. My research and professional interests include leadership and advocacy in school counseling, school counselor professional identity, and cultivating trauma-informed schools. I am so excited to train and prepare the next generation of school counselors!

Please don’t hesitate to reach out to me with any questions you have, I’d love to hear from you! hannahbrinser@isu.edu

Kimberly Leishman

Hello! My name is Kimberly Leishman and I am delighted to be entering into my second year as a doctoral student in the Counselor Education and Counseling Program at Idaho State University!

I was born and raised in Idaho and am a Bengal through and through! I have completed a Bachelor of Arts in both Sociology (2012) and Social Work (2017) and a Masters of Counseling in Clinical Mental Health (2020) at Idaho State University. I am a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) and a National Certified Counselor (NCC). My clinical focus is in trauma-based practice, and I have had the opportunity to work with trauma through various populations in the community. I am trained in both EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) and TF-CBT (Trauma Focused - Cognitive Behavioral Therapy). I primarily work with survivors of domestic violence, sexual based offences, and child abuse at a local non-profit agency, Family Services Alliance. I have been blessed to work with this agency for five years, first as a victims advocate and now as a counselor. In addition to interpersonal based trauma, other professional research interests include religious trauma, animal assisted interventions, counselor supervision, and wellness.

Outside of school and professional work I enjoy the outdoors, traveling, new adventures, and enjoying time with my people.

Please feel free to reach out with any questions! Email: kimberlyleishman@isu.edu

Jorge Lopez

(He, Him, His) Hi everyone, my name is Jorge Rosales Lopez. I am a seond-year doctoral student on the Meridian campus. I come to Boise from Atlanta, GA where I completed my MS in clinical rehabilitation counseling at Georgia State University in 2020. I am originally from Los Angeles, CA and a bilingual Spanish and English speaker. Some personal hobbies are mine are playing all sports (primarily basketball and soccer), hanging with friends and family, and traveling.

Some professional interests of mine are multiculturalism, social justice advocacy, and disability advocacy. My clinical background includes working for the State of Georgia’s Vocational Rehabilitation Agency and conducting gerontology research linked to suicide and loneliness. Moving forward I aspire in bringing counseling services to underserved and marginalized populations. I am excited to begin this journey and looking forward to the challenges ahead.

Zhaoxuan (Daisy) Zhou

Hi there! My name is Daisy and I am a first-year doctoral student at Idaho State University! Preferred pronouns are she/her/hers.

I grew up in China and received my B.S. in psychology from Peking University. When working as a research assistant helping kindergarten children with cognitive tests, I found that I emphasized their ability to keep a positive attitude and stay calm in the face of challenges more than their performance on the tasks. Reflecting on this experience, I realized that counseling should be my career choice. After graduating, I spent four years at Stetson University (Go Hatters!) and earned my M.S. in Marriage Family and Couple Counseling. I also got my certificate in Clinical Mental Health Counseling and Play and Creativity in counseling. As an intern at the House Next Door in DeLand, Florida, I worked with underserved children and families and developed a passion for child-centered play therapy with young children. My research interests include counseling children and families, multicultural and international counseling issues, the use of expressive art techniques in counseling and supervision, and the LGBTQ community. I am also passionate about animal-assisted play therapy!

Outside of school and professional work, I enjoy visiting the zoo, writing popular science articles as part of my professional advocacy work, watching movies, and reading fanfiction stories. I am a big fan of Harry Potter and my English name, Daisy, is from Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone- “Sunshine, daisies, butter mellow, turn this stupid, fat rat yellow.”

Please feel free to reach out if you have any questions. Email: zhaoxuanzhou@isu.edu

“Roar! Bengals Roar!”

 

1st Year Doctoral Cohort

Students

Back Row: Anna Baird-Udy (Meridian), Aileen Tierney (Meridian), and Caroline Brown. Front Row: Kateryna Kuzyszyn, Minna Yoo and Lee Freed (Meridian).

Anna Baird-Udy

Caroline Brown

Hello everyone! My name is Caroline Brown (she/hers) I am beyond excited and grateful to begin my first year as a counseling and counseling education doctoral student at Idaho State University. I grew up in a small town in Maryland and have had the opportunity to live in many different places from then till now. I attended Utah State University as I obtained my bachelor’s degree in psychology and minor in human development. I then attended Idaho State University as I received my master’s degree in counseling with a specialty of marriage, couple, and family counseling. I have been able to work in the field as a substance abuse counselor for teens at an inpatient treatment center where I specialized in mental health, group, family, and individual counseling. As well as the START counselor for the College of Technology at Idaho State University. I am passionate about the systemic cycles that influence individuals, families, and communities. My research interests are found in addiction counseling and ecotherapy. In recognizing that the wellness model is tied to an array of areas I hope to continue to research the impact of acceptance and commitment therapy combined with ecotherapy in assisting people of all ages cope with addictions.

I love to spend my free time in the mountains with my two pups where I find myself most days either hiking, biking, or snowboarding depending on the season.

Lee Freed

Lee Freed (they/them pronouns) is a Licensed Clinical Mental Health Counselor from Vermont, USA. Lee has been practicing individual and group counseling for the past 5 years since graduating with their degree in Mental Health Counseling in 2016 from the University of Vermont. Lee specializes in therapy with youth and their families. Lee has a specialty interest in and experience with grief and loss counseling as well as providing support and education for the young lgbtqai+ community. In their free time Lee likes to roller skate in skateparks, read, and play video games.

Kateryna Kuzyszyn

Hi! My name is Kateryna Kuzyszyn, and I am excited to be a first-year doctoral student at ISU. I was born and raised in New Jersey with the accent to prove it and have enjoyed exploring the Pacific Northwest. I received my B.A. in Psychology and my M.A. in Counseling with a specialization in school counseling from Caldwell University. Throughout my graduate education I have had the opportunity to work with a variety of students in K-12 settings, and this work has opened my eyes to the need for competent school counselors and to focus on career identity and the lack of advocacy school counselors receive. 

My professional interests are shaped by educational and personal experiences and include incorporating social emotional learning and social justice into school counseling curriculums, school counselors as leaders and advocates, crisis and trauma in schools, animal assisted interventions within counselor supervision, animal assisted interventions within trauma-informed counseling, and potentially incorporating animal assisted interventions within school systems.

In my free time I enjoy listening to true crime podcasts, binge watching reality TV or Greys Anatomy, and meeting as many farm animals that I can while I’m in Idaho. Please feel free to reach out to me with any questions, my email is katerynakuzyszyn@isu.edu!

Aileen Tierney

Hello! My name is Aileen Tierney (she/her/hers). I am a first year doctoral student at Idaho State University, and I'm very excited to be continuing my education at the Meridian campus! I was born and raised in Illinois, so this is my first experience living outside of the Midwest. I graduated from Marquette University in Milwaukee, Wisconsin for my undergraduate degree in psychology in 2019. Then, I recently graduated in 2021 with my Master's in Counseling from Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois. I specialized in school counseling while interning as a master's student. I enjoy working with adolescents and young adults as they navigate the academic, social, and emotional changes they face on a daily basis.

I've had many previous experiences that have led me to pursue a PhD in Counselor Education and Supervision. At EIU, for example, I co-taught our Basic Skills (Pre-Practicum) and Group Counseling courses alongside the EIU faculty. I served on a handful of research teams in the department, learning the nuances of conducting counseling research. I also supervised first year master's students as they began their professional development, and I enjoyed coaching them through the counseling process and how to fine-tune their skills. These experiences showed me that I truly value education and connecting to students on a personal and professional level. I hope to gain more personal and professional experiences as a doctoral student, which will ultimately allow me to grow as a teacher, supervisor, and researcher.

In my free time, I enjoy many creative activities like journaling, painting, and drawing. I also enjoy reading, spending time with family, spending time outside, taking care of my houseplants, and finding new coffee shops to try out. I look forward to the adventures that will come from living and working in Idaho, and I am excited to begin my doctoral career!

Minna Yoo

Hello. My name is Minna(she/her/hers), and I’m a first year student in ISU doctoral program in Pocatello.

I grew up in South Korea, and had all my education there except 2 years in Athens, GA (when I was 10). I earned dual bachelor’s degrees in Education and English Education from Chung Ang University(S. Korea), and master’s degree in Educational Counseling from Seoul National University(S. Korea). I worked as a counselor at Seoul National University Counseling Center for about three years, meeting Korean and international students before I came to Idaho. While working in SNU, I developed my interest in support group/group counseling and supervision. Also, counselor growth and multicultural counseling is another research interest of mine.

Outside school, I have been a keyboard player in music bands for hobby. I enjoy all kinds of music. Also, I enjoy walking and sitting outside feeling the breeze. Baking is my new hobby after coming to Pocatello. I am happy and excited to be a part of ISU doc program. Feel free to contact me if you have any questions.