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“It’s really the aha moments that energize my work,” Stephanie Scovil explains. “Those little moments when youth or families are practicing the skills they learned to build healthy relationships—it’s so rewarding.”

As the Clinical Supervisor at Albertina Kerr’s Children’s Crisis Psychiatric facility (Subacute), Scovil and her team of mental health professionals support youth and their families experiencing a mental health crisis. “We help people during a very vulnerable time in their life by allowing them to be seen, heard, and validated,” she says.

A Licensed Marriage-Family Therapist and a Certified Drug and Alcohol Counselor in the state of Oregon, Scovil supports Kerr’ therapists, supervising them towards licensure as well as helping them with their cases. Her team helps youth and families reset, as well as navigate community resources, so they have the most support when they are discharged.

“I love seeing new therapists come into their own professional selves,” she says. “It’s really an interesting time where you are balancing everything you learned in grad school with the actual application of that knowledge, while also of figuring out who you are as a professional and how you want to bring yourself to this work.”

Scovil’s desire to pursue a career in mental health was ignited after volunteering at the Immigrant and Refugee Community Organization (IRCO). While there she volunteered as a mentor for the Somali refugee program, as well as provided support to incoming refugees by acclimating them to Portland’s school system. “I realized that despite all the incredible services available to folks, mental health was one that was lacking,” she notes.

These experiences led her to earn a master’s degree in Marriage and Family Therapy & Counseling from Lewis and Clark College. For nearly 10 years, she has worked with youth and adults in varying service settings locally, on the East Coast and internationally. “Throughout my career, I’ve always been passionate about making sure folks who really need care can get it,” she says.

Scovil will be part of the KATU-2 Recover NW Town Hall conversation focusing on youth mental health issues related to the pandemic. Tune in 6-7 p.m. on March 15, 2022.