ACA Blog

Pam Ebert
Jul 20, 2012

Appalachian Culture and Counseling

Hi all! My name is Pam Ebert and I am a new blogger on the ACA web site. This all came about because I was kind of irritated about the lack of scholarly attention directed at Appalachian peoples, and my professor suggested that I try nontraditional methods of getting heard. His exact words were something like “a nod is as good as a wink to a blind horse,” which I love and will probably put on my tombstone.  Thank you Dr. J.!

Well, anyway, here I am. Hope some of you have similar interests and we can discuss issues related to Appalachian heritages, lifestyles and a bunch of other stuff. I invite you all to comment on the posts and maybe, just maybe we can start conversations here that will spark other ideas and actions. For those of you who are counselors in Appalachia, what has your experience been? What do counseling students need to know about Appalachian culture? What do you love about living and working in the region?

This is one of my favorite things about where I live: picking blueberries at a really great local fruit farm called Dillon’s. After an hour of picking, I find I am recharged, rejuvenated and ready to face another day. Check out their Facebook page here http://www.facebook.com/pages/Dillon-Fruit-Farm/140600755976287.

This leads me to the next part; a little bit about me. I am a PC, an LCDCIII and a DOT/SAP and also recently started a private practice, Thrive Counseling & Wellness. I live in Lisbon, Ohio (which is in the eastern part of Ohio, adjacent to Pennsylvania, the Ohio River and West Virginia) and my county is one of the areas classified as Appalachian by the Appalachian Regional Commission. My husband and I have two children, a son who is ten and a daughter who is seven. In addition to being a counselor, I am a doctoral student at Kent State University in Counseling and Human Development, volunteer sometimes at my kids’ school and am a member of the National Alliance on Mental Illness, Columbiana County chapter.

In addition to all of this, my research and clinical interests are Appalachian culture related to counseling, multiculturalism, higher education, alcohol and drug dependency and the use of creative therapies. I hope to sprinkle all of these into the blog as appropriate.

Here are some of my favorite resources about Appalachia, its culture and heritages:
http://www.lazylanecabins.com A great business that rents cabins in Hocking Hills, Ohio
http://appalshop.org Appalshop is a non-profit multi-disciplinary arts and education center in the heart of Appalachia producing original films, video, theater, music and spoken-word recordings, radio, photography, multimedia, and books.
http://www.appalachianstudies.org/jas The Journal of Appalachian Studies

So for all of you out there in the blogosphere; what are your favorite sites? What do you find is important in your clinical work with Appalachian clients? What types of posts would be informative and helpful to you?
See you next week!


Pam Ebert is a counselor in private practice while completing her doctoral work. She has a special interest in both rural and Appalachian cultures and how they pertain to the world of counseling.

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