Hannah is originally from the Adirondacks in Northern New York and has always loved the outdoors. This love took her to Colorado where she studied psychology at the University of Denver. Upon graduating, she was excited to discover Aspiro, where she could combine psychology and outdoor adventure while working as a field guide. She quickly saw students thriving in the program and decided to further her education to become a therapist, obtaining her Master of Social Work at the University of Utah with a focus on substance abuse, and grief & loss.
Hannah is a firm believer in adventure therapy and recognizes the power and growth that adventure brings to her students. During her 5 years at Aspiro, Hannah has seen her students develop a more secure identity, develop grit, and embrace their ability to overcome difficult challenges through adventure therapy. Hannah not only sees this progress during therapy sessions, but she also takes the time to visit her students while they are out rock climbing, canyoneering, mountain biking, or skiing. She appreciates the opportunity to see her students in different environments and states that this provides an excellent platform for assessment in addition to an opportunity to get to know her students even better.
Hannah’s involved therapeutic approach allows her to individualize each student’s treatment plan. She also is trained in acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT), cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), and motivational interviewing, and utilizes multiple principles of dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT) as well, which all contribute to her ability to effectively address the therapeutic concerns of each of her student’s. These may include anxiety, depression, social/executive function deficits, defiance, impulsivity, poor decision making, substance abuse, school challenges, underdeveloped identity, and low sense of self.
Hannah recognizes that it is critical for teenagers to discover who they are, and having space to do this in the wilderness is especially beneficial as they have a space to be more introspective. She has found success in guiding her students on this journey of self-discovery and has found significant success in helping students with their identity formation, and she is especially gifted at getting to the root of issues by identifying and addressing underlying emotional problems. Hannah’s students leave Aspiro feeling more emotionally grounded and with a more communicative and open relationship with their parents. Hannah shares that upon completing Aspiro, her students often say that they “have the strength to overcome anything that comes their way.” Their development of this strength translates to academics as well, as they are less likely to be overwhelmed by day to day challenges. Parents report feeling more connected to their child more than ever before and are optimistic about the future.