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California State University Fullerton
Department of Counseling

Julie H. Lee, Ph.D., LMFT

I immigrated to the United States from South Korea when I was 6 years old and grew up in Orange County. I graduated from Rosary and went on to major in Special Education at Gonzaga University. I began to understand how students become "lost" and would "fall through the cracks" and wanted to do more. In order to provide one on one attention, therapy was the answer. I was honored to be accepted to the counseling program at CSUF. I was involved with GCSA as a student and CAA as an alum. While in my last year at CSUF, I wanted to go further so with the guidance of Dr. Englar-Carlson, I decided to enroll at Kent State University and received my doctorate in Counselor Education and Supervision.

I have worked with children in foster care, the chronically mentally ill adult population in day programs, special needs children, adolescents in the school setting, and adults in the private practice setting. My passion is working with young children, especially the 0-5 population, doing non-directive play therapy while working with the families empowering and giving them tools to advocate for their own children. It is very rewarding to see parents begin to understand how to interact effectively with their children. Utilizing the Child Parent Relationship Therapy (CPRT) model, I've trained parents to become the therapists and to implement play sessions at home.

My research interest is within the South Korean immigrant population and mental health, especially those who have children with disabilities. The biculturalism of an immigrant individual is both complex and fascinating in the way that they are able to toggle back and forth between their two cultures to fit in. I've always felt more Korean growing up but felt American when visiting Korea. It can be somewhat of a lonely journey and to add the stress of parenting a special needs child could be a definite game changer. My dissertation topic studied the experiences of South Korean immigrant parents who have a child with autism.

I hope to build a practice providing home based services to children in order to cultivate a level of comfort for them. This also seems to be a less threatening approach to working with children. This type of service delivery can also help those clients who are ashamed to leave the house and seek services which include a lot of the Asian communities. I love being in the classroom and am so ecstatic and thrilled to be back at CSUF in this capacity. The professors, colleagues, and all that the program entails has completely transformed my life and has helped to support who I am today as a clinician and an educator.

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