Derek believes that everyone possesses the inner wisdom, courage, and capability to live a life guided by their own values and sees that his role as the counsellor is to walk alongside clients in this journey.
Within the counselling relationship, he aims to develop a connection built on safety, trust, and compassion, but also one that encourages the client to move towards acceptance and growth (even when it's uncomfortable). Derek's counselling style integrates elements of mindfulness, acceptance and commitment therapy, emotion-focused therapy, AEDP, experiential approaches and existentialism. As a student, his approach is still growing, but overall, he aims to help clients develop healthy ways to adapt to life and bring themselves back to a place of clarity, calm, courage, and connectedness. He has provided counselling to a wide variety of clientele and has experience working with anxiety, depression, stress, belonging, identity, self-esteem, spirituality, trauma, and mental performance psychology.
Derek also happens to be an alumnus of the Spartan men's volleyball program and attended TWU from 2009 to 2014. Derek is passionate about working with athletes in the mental health space and hopes to create a setting in which student-athletes can feel heard, understood, and seen as they go through their own trials and triumphs. He brings experience and understanding of what it’s like to be a student-athlete at TWU, but by no means assumes this permits him to say he has ever walked a mile in another athlete’s shoes. His experience simply offers him a window from which he can better appreciate, connect, and empathize with the unique challenges that athletes face.